Some business exits go smoothly; others, not so much. The key for business owners approaching the time when they’re poised to move on is to plan early and often, and to thoroughly think through their approach to the process.
Life happens. So does death. Professional advisers say business owners need to prepare for what happens to their companies in the event they’re taken out of commission by a sudden life-changing event — such as an illness or injury that leaves them incapacitated or debilitated, or worse. Even if an owner experiences a personal crisis that takes him away from the business for an extended period, it can have crushing effects on the company, especially without prior planning, advisers say.
For some, owning a company is the American dream. At some point in their lives, many Americans will develop and own companies. Some will thrive, and some will fail. For the ones who develop successful companies there will come a time where they will transfer control through sale, retirement, or even death.