There comes a time in every business owner’s life when it’s time to let go. It could either be due to a strategic plan, or in other cases, it could be due to certain limitations in the business model. Regardless of the reason behind it, exiting a business often means having to sell it or dissolving it entirely.
As the founder of the business, it may be difficult to determine when the right time is to jump ship.
These three critical indicators can help identify the correct time to sell and to prepare an exit strategy.
Lack of enjoyment
If running your business makes you feel anxious, depressed, or downright sick, it may be time to move on. If there is a lack of enjoyment in what you are doing, it will be hard to do it well. In a business, challenges are commonplace, so if you get to a point where your stress levels are hitting dangerous levels, it could be an indication that you need to start working out an exit strategy. In the long term, you may realise that this was the best decision you made for yourself and for the business.
New market trends
Part of being an entrepreneur means recognising threats to the business and knowing when they are big enough to warrant an exit plan. For instance, if a new market trend is emerging and it is threatening to make your business irrelevant and erase it from the map, it’s time to move out and move on. Most if not all businesses are threatened by the rate at which the market is going and the technological trajectory at which society moves along. It’s important to keep up with trends so that you can prepare to take action if the situation calls for it.
Of course, not all exit plans are borne out of negative circumstances. In some cases, business owners create an exit strategy because another offer which is more lucrative has presented itself. For instance, a big business can take interest in a small enterprise and wants to buy it for a hefty amount; the small business owner can make a huge profit out of the deal and should seriously consider the offer. It may be difficult to make the decision to sell, but a multi-million dollar offer is surely something to think about.
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