Mergers & Acquisitions

Resources: M&A Encyclopedia

Comprehensive articles on every step of the process of buying or selling a business from the most exhaustive encyclopedia of M&A articles in the industry.

The Importance of Persistence When Selling a Business

Selling a business is ranked as one of the most stressful events in an entrepreneur’s life, somewhere below doing jail time and above getting into debt beyond your means.

Why? Because the process often brings with it setbacks, frustrations, and major disappointments. Imagine working on the largest transaction of your lifetime, only to have it implode at the last minute or never even get off the ground.

Preparation is critical to lowering your blood pressure and improving the chances of selling your business at the same time. And that requires organizational skills and a lot of hard work.

Once your business is on the market, patience and persistence are critical.

You will be actively involved in preparing your business for sale and negotiating the offer. The marketing process, however, tends to be more hands-off for you until an interested buyer is identified. And that’s where we can help.

Selling Your Business Tends to Feel “All or Nothing.”

We have had clients who felt despondent after several months of having their business on the market and not having an offer in hand. Selling a business is not like football or any other sport where you make slow, measurable progress toward the goal line. Because so many entrepreneurs tend to be goal-driven and have Type A personalities, they can become easily discouraged by this all-or-nothing game.

The process of selling your business tends to feel “all or nothing” because you either win or lose. There is no middle ground. Either you have an offer on your business or you don’t. If you don’t have an offer, it’s easy to get discouraged. This is where patience plays a major role for sellers. Being patient and letting us do our job is important.

Stay focused on your business.

Whatever you do, don’t take your hands off the steering wheel and let the revenues of your business decline.

This will kill the prospect of a sale faster than anything else.

Business owners are action-oriented people, and they feel best when taking action toward a goal. Because parts of the sale process are passive for the owner, patience during these passive parts of the sale is paramount.

What Can You Do to Improve the Chances of Selling Your Business?

Revise your marketing strategy.

There is one important thing you can do to sell your business. If your business is actively being marketed for sale and you are receiving poor results, you need to revise your marketing strategy.

If you were attempting to hire a new employee for 30 days without any results, would you continue blindly executing the same strategy for another six to 10 months? Or, would you revise your strategy? If our strategy is not working, then we must revise it — plain and simple.

Our successful clients (i.e., those who have sold their businesses) are those who are persistent and patient. If they received poor results from the initial marketing strategy, we revise the strategy and continue marching on. Most patient sellers may have to do this several times before successfully closing a deal. This is difficult for most entrepreneurs because they are used to either doing nothing or taking dramatic action.

If you want to sell your business, be patient and persistent, and you will be handsomely rewarded.