The unique thing about the six sections of this book is that you can start anywhere in the book depending on where you are in the life of your business. First, we covered the Pre-Business Planning and Start Up phases of a business. Last week, we addressed Human Resources and Operations. This week, take a moment to go through the self test of how you are creating your exit plan from your business. Most business owners, new or established, don’t have a roadmap to exit their business. Preparing your business for sale, and having a plan for your life after business is one of the most important (and one of the most overlooked) things a business owner should do.

Section 5: Building a Saleable Business and the Sale Once you have the business running smoothly, you need to plan for the eventual sale. Growing that saleable business takes some planning. Then once you decide to sell the business, there is a whole new set of issues that need to be handled to ensure that you get the most out of the sale. Section 5 of the book will help you answer these questions:

  • Does your business run smoothly without you?
  • What is your business worth?
  • Have you managed your debt so that you can afford to sell your business?
  • How can you minimize the tax consequences of a sale?
  • Who are the buyers for your business?
  • What do you need to know to negotiate a sale contract, and who should be involved?
  • How do you transition your customers to a new owner of your business?
  • How do you transition your employees to a new owner of your business?
  • What should you expect in the sale documents, and how will you structure the monetary transaction?

Section 6: Transitioning to Life After Business Once you’ve made the decision to sell, how do you manage the transition for everyone involved? How will you adjust to your life after the business? Sitting on a beach or playing daily rounds of golf sound appealing when you are in the thick of running a business, but will that last for very long? Proper reflection and planning helps to keep entrepreneurs from having seller’s remorse, and allows them to be fulfilled by the fruits of their labor. Section 6 of the book will help you answer these questions:

  • What do you need to know about wealth management?
  • How do you adjust to life after work?
  • How do you pass on your values to your kids?
  • How do you leave a legacy after you are gone?

We hope you have had a chance to really reflect over the last month on your business or business idea. Now that you have examined where you are and where you want to be, you will be able to pick the area that will have the most immediate impact for you, and start reading.

Also watch for the complete Table of Contents and ways to pre-order your copy of Six Steps to Small Business Success: Start, Manage and Exit Your Business