How To Know When It Is Time to Sell Your Business

Running your own business can be rewarding on both a personal and a professional level. When you run your own business you have a direct stake in your financial future, and you benefit directly from all your hard work.

Whether you have been running your business for decades or have just started the firm, it is important to have a succession plan in place. Thinking about the future and what factors would make you sell the company is just smart business. Here are some signs that it may be time to sell and move on to greener pastures.

When You Have Lost the Passion

If you have lost the passion you had when you started the company, it may be time to sell and move on to an endeavor you are more passionate about. Passion is a driving force for any entrepreneur, and once that passion is gone it can be hard to recapture.

Do an honest assessment of the business you started and take a look at how you feel about it today. If you no longer have the passion you once did, you might want to work on succession planning and start testing the market for a future sale.

When the Company Has Outgrown You

Sometimes the founder of a business finds that the business they have created has simply outgrown their skill set. If this applies to you, it may be time to sell that startup and move on to other things.

Do an honest assessment of your current skill set and compare it to the skills now needed to run your business. If there is a mismatch, the time to sell and move on has probably come.

When You Have Outgrown the Company

In other cases the opposite happens. The founder of the company finds that they have outgrown the company they started and there is nothing more of value they can provide the firm.

If the business could arguably run just as well without your day-to-day guidance, it may be time to sell or pass the company on to a trusted employee. You will need to develop a strong succession plan to make it work, but in the end it could be a win-win for all involved.

When You Are Ready to Retire

If you are looking on to the next phase of your life, it may be time to sell the business and put the proceeds toward a secure retirement. Many company founders put so much time, effort and money into building their businesses that they neglect their own retirement planning. Turning the business you have built into cash can be a good way to make up for lost time and get ready for the next phase of your life.

When the Market is Unusually Strong

Sometimes the market is simply too strong to ignore. If you receive an offer that is hard to refuse, it might be time to take the money and move on.

If you are thinking about selling your business, it is a good idea to research the state of the market and think about how much it would take for you to sell and move on. You can always test the market, even if you have no immediate plans to sell the business.