You are reading: Step 2 – Goals and Outcomes

Craig West

Founder & Chairman

Explore the critical aspects of setting goals and outcomes for your business exit strategy, particularly tailored for SME business owners like yourself. Visualizing a prosperous exit is a vital step in this endeavor. We’ll delve into this journey, concentrating on defining goals and desired outcomes for you, your business, your employees, and your financial future.

Clarify Your Business Exit Strategy

Begin with a clear vision of your exit strategy. Many business owners overlook this vital aspect or possess only a vague idea, like selling the business upon reaching a certain age. However, a successful exit demands thorough preparation and clarity in the approach.

Your exit strategy must be specific and time-based. Outline a clear date and envisage the type of buyer, be it a listed company or a private equity fund. Moreover, define the financial aspect of the sale – whether it’s a $2 million, $5 million, $10 million, or $50 million deal. Being specific allows you to strategize effectively to achieve your financial goals.

Tailoring Preparation to Your Exit Goals

Preparation varies based on your exit strategy. If you plan to list your company on a stock exchange, certain prerequisites like audited accounts and robust governance systems are necessary. Conversely, passing the business to your children requires structured training and possibly adding specialized roles within the management.

Understanding your intended outcome is crucial in shaping the decision-making and implementation processes throughout the transition.

Plan Your Post-Exit Role and Transition

Clearly define your role post-exit. Decide whether you’ll still be actively involved in the business or transition into an advisory or board position. This decision impacts the steps you’ll take in the lead-up to the exit.

Consider the expertise needed to support your successor, be it a family member or an external buyer. Plan and implement necessary changes in management and structure to ensure a smooth transition and the ongoing success of the business.

Communicate Your Vision

Effective communication is key. Discuss your exit plans with family members, business partners, and other stakeholders. Keeping everyone informed and aligned with your vision maximizes the likelihood of a successful transition.

Avoid the common mistake of keeping your exit strategy a secret. Sharing your vision and involving others can yield valuable insights and garner support for your journey.

Take Action and Document Your Journey

Document your goals and action plan in a clear, concise manner. Start a journal to record the steps you’ll take to achieve a successful exit. Make it a dynamic roadmap that evolves as you progress toward your goals.

In conclusion, setting clear and detailed exit goals is the cornerstone of a successful business exit. By documenting your strategy and involving stakeholders, you set the stage for a smooth transition that maximizes the value of your business.

So, take the next step – sit down, pen your goals, and lay the foundation for an exit that truly embodies exiting like a boss. Your future self and your business will thank you for the foresight and meticulous planning.

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