Who Else To Tell About the Sale

Not only should you consider whether to tell your employees, there are also several other key stakeholders you may consider confiding in.

Professional Advisors

Telling your professional advisors is almost always a safe bet, assuming they are, in fact, professionals. They’re accustomed to their clients selling their businesses and are unlikely to be surprised at the news. Professional advisors, such as accountants and attorneys, don’t like surprises, and involving them early in the process may benefit you.


Landlords are also accustomed to businesses being bought and sold, and the news is unlikely to shock them. Informing your landlord early on also carries the benefit of being able to pre-negotiate the terms of the transfer in some cases.


I recommend informing those closest to you, especially if you live in the same house. Keeping the sale a secret from your nearest family members will be nearly impossible in any event. Also, it could result in hard feelings once they learn of the sale, especially if they hear about it through “unofficial” channels. If your family members work in the business, this should be handled with extreme caution.


I recommend telling only your closest friends about your plans, as most will have a difficult time keeping their lips sealed. If you trust and share a close bond with a friend or two, this confidant can be a safe person to talk to during the process, providing emotional stability for you during more stressful periods of the transition.


I don’t recommend informing your suppliers unless you believe they could be a source of potential buyers. Telling your suppliers is risky because they probably do business with your competition and are likely to spread the word.