Apr 30, 201912:33 PMExit Stage Right
with Martha Sullivan
Confusing business discipline with being fancy
(page 2 of 2)
Ann was open about her fear in taking what she called a “fancy” (aka: structured and disciplined) approach: What if the process stirs up the hornets nest and:
- We find out what the market value is for the company and it’s not what we assumed;
- Some want to sell the company outright because they need or want the liquidity;
- We don’t have a third-generation family member who has the competence and desire to lead the company; or
- We discover we don’t agree.
There is a human tendency to avoid conflict to preserve the peace, whether in your family or in your business. Is it better not to know whether you have consensus up front? Is it easier and more economical to deal with disagreement when and if it comes up?
My personal bias is to know sooner than later. If we do all agree, we can be confident about our path throughout our transition. If we don’t agree, we have a chance to address it up front and create a better solution for us as individuals and as a family. Ann certainly knows her family dynamics better than I ever could. Yet, as she gives into her fear and rushes to a transaction, she may still find herself on a very slippery slope.
Every owner I talk to about transitioning his or her business wants a successful outcome. You can see it in their eyes and shining from their hearts. The challenge comes in building an understanding of the how they can make it happen. They need a process to address the personal, financial, and ongoing needs of the business and individual. Better outcomes don’t come from fancy; they come from rolling up your sleeves and doing the work — one straightforward, disciplined step at a time.
Click here to sign up for the free IB ezine — your twice-weekly resource for local business news, analysis, voices, and the names you need to know. If you are not already a subscriber to In Business magazine, be sure to sign up for our monthly print edition here.