Why Selling a Business is a Million-Dollar Aspirin

by | Sep 21, 2018 | Business Valuation, Concepts, Exit Planning, Mindset, Retirement | 0 comments

Running a business can be stressful because the typical CEO is involved in dozens of business systems. It’s a lot like spinning fifty plates. Sometimes the business owner’s involvement is significant, and that plate must be spun every day if not, it falls and breaks. Sometimes, the plate only needs to be spun once a month, but it still needs the owner to spin it, or it too falls.

I see business owners getting frustrated with the stress associated with keeping so many plates spinning at the same time. Many of these plates can only be spun by them. The owner possesses special skill or knowledge that makes them the only person who can keep the plate on the stick. As they approach retirement age, the owner gets worn down by the constant pressure of keeping the plates from breaking and sees a way out… sell the business.

They know that the income stream from the business is worth much more than the sales value, but something has to end the plate spinning.

too many plates to spin?

Selling the business can reduce your net worth by millions vs. Half-Retirement (see The 44% Rule). You don’t need to take a million-dollar aspirin just to end the business owner’s stress. Half-Retirement solves these problems too. Half-Retirement allows a business owner to keep the business income but removes the plate-spinning stress.  Here’s how:

  1. First, you must get an accurate inventory of what plates you are spinning and why you are the one spinning There’s a reason for this, and it’s never as simple as “just delegate it.”
  2. Use a system such as the FEVER process to a) remove a plate from your responsibility list; b) reduce how often you need to spin it.
  3. Identify your Picasso Work, the special genius that you (and all business owners) bring to the business. This is undelegable work. It’s a big reason why Half-Retirement works so much better than full retirement. When you completely remove the special genius of the business owner, you lose a lot.
  4. Gradually grow your team to take over complete responsibility for some of your plates and partial responsibility for some of your plates.
  5. Create a powerful magnet to pull you FROM work. Most business owners have the opposite – a magnetic force pulling them into the business. Once you take a month long trip to Italy or start that charity you have always wanted to, the progress you make removing yourself from the plate spinning will accelerate.

Learn more about Half-Retirement on our webinar.

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