Original article shared by Partner, Ken Knapik
1. Like it or not, you are one year older
Long hard hours are what built your business and long hard hours have kept it running. How many more years of your life are you willing to invest in your business? Wouldn’t you prefer to reap the rewards of that hard work instead?
2. This recession was either a shot across the bow or it may have hit the boat.
It is difficult to get a clear picture of how hard this recession has been on small businesses. To get a glimpse, we can look at the increased bankruptcy numbers and the peak unemployment rates. Even if you’ve kept all your employees and managed to keep your business afloat, we can pretty much guarantee your business isn’t what it was four years ago.
3. The next upswing may be the last one you’ll see before you are in your 70′s.
In real estate, the saying is ‘location, location, location’. With business exits, the saying is ‘timing, timing, timing’. If we then look to the transfer spectrum chart, it indicates that the next exit ‘window’ is fast approaching from 2013 to 2018. If you are in your late 50′s or early 60′s, the window after this one puts you in your 70′s. How long will it take you to assemble your plan, your team, align your business and get prepared, both personally and within the business, for your exit?
4. More than ever, your kids probably don’t want the business.
Less than one-third of family-owned businesses survive the transition from the first generation of ownership to the second – and only 13 percent of family businesses remain in the family over 60 years. Why such challenging longevity statistics? It could be in part the added challenges that come with running a family owned business or, quite possibly, the many hurdles that can come with succession of that business. Take the time to analyze your exit options to determine which one works best for you as well as for your children. You may be surprised at what you decide.
5. Recessions make us realize how much is at risk.
Most often, the majority of a business owner’s wealth is tied to their privately held business. In addition, most of these owners depend upon that business for income, perks, and for the overall maintenance of their lifestyle. You are not alone if this recession has made you realize how much of your financial well-being is at stake in your business.