Let’s consider some statistics:1
- 50% of small business owners want to exit their business within the next 5 years and 75% want to exit within the next 10 years;
- 80% of all business owners have almost all of their net worth tied up in their business;
- Over 80% of small business owners have no written plan or strategy to exit their business.
Any good financial planner will tell you that this does not make for a good investment strategy. Perhaps a more telling statistic is that 50% of businesses do not survive the death of their owner1. This means, that for many businesses, all the effort, resources and time invested into the business just disappear. No written exit plan. Think about the negative impact that has on your family, your employees, your vendors and your customers.
We know that half of all business owners exit their business through one of the 5 D’s: Death, Disability, Divorce, Distress or Disagreement. None these things are unforeseeable. The smart owner will not only anticipate the 5 D’s but proactively take the strategic steps necessary to manage them with a well thought out exit plan.
Remember – you will exit your business one way or another. This can be an overwhelming concept but it doesn’t have to be. Your best bet is to stay ahead of the 5 D’s.
1 Peter Christman, The Master Plan: Exit Strategy for Successful Business Owners, (© Copyright 2015 by Peter G. Christman,) 22.