“If you wait until you are ready, it is almost certainly too late.” ~Seth Godin
Setting goals and developing a plan for how to achieve them can be an extremely powerful experience. If you are an owner and you are thinking about selling your business, it can motivate you to turn your vision for life after your business into reality.
Preparing yourself is the first step to successfully transitioning out of your business. While it is, of course, important to focus on preparing your business for sale, it is also critical to make sure you are personally ready to move on. You may not remember who you were before you dove head first into your company, or know what to do with yourself after you leave it behind. You may also be asking yourself some tough questions:
- What’s next for my future?
- What should I do with my life?
- How can I remain engaged once I leave my business?
- How can I use my skills and experience to help others?
These aren’t easy questions to answer and may seem overwhelming to think about. As we discuss in our book Cashing Out of Your Business – Your Last Great Deal, your identity and that of the business may now actually be one and the same. Could this be keeping you from moving forward? Identifying your fears and concerns and exploring whether these may be keeping you from planning is a huge step toward overcoming them. Let’s look at some of the ways that you can start defining your goals for the future and getting yourself prepared to ensure a successful exit from your business.
Set Specific Goals for Life after Your Business
“Whilst we deliberate how to begin a thing, it grows too late to begin it.” ~Quintilian
The process of setting your future life goals can help you determine where you want to go and what you want to achieve, while helping you focus your time and effort.
Take time to consider your passions, and what is going to come next for you. Then think about setting goals and objectives for each area of your life and plan for the financial support of each. The Platinum Years suggests you consider all of the facets of your life which may include:
- Physical Health
- Intellectual Stimulation
- Social Connections
- Income-producing Work
Going through this exercise will help you visualize what you really want to do in your next phase of life.
Invest the Time to Get Yourself Prepared
After all of your hard work and dedication to your business, you deserve to achieve your goals for your wealth and your life. With proper planning and a plan of action, you can create the legacy and future you envision.
Your personal planning, as part of your overall business transition plan, can help you craft the next and hopefully the best stage of your life. As we discuss in our book, this is about remembering your true passions, determining what is most important to you, and what you want to do when you can spend less or no time with your business.
Take proactive steps now to avoid regrets and disappointment later:
- Identify your personal and financial objectives.
- Plan well in advance (at least 3-5 years) of your transition.
- Understand your transition options and the pros and cons of each.
- Be proactive; don’t procrastinate!