When a business owner engages me to sell their business, one of the first questions I ask is if they have a relationship with a wealth planner.
I approach selling a business as a team effort, including the attorney, accountant, key staff and wealth planner. While the accountant and attorney have very specific roles, the wealth planner is the team member who acts as the stabilizing influence for the business owner. He or she is the one who helps the client keep their eye on the end goal. Moreover, the wealth planner is critical to the process of deal structuring, so as to ensure the sale of the business is consistent with the owner’s short and long-term financial goals.
I recently closed a transaction that involved several twists and turns. Of course, every deal has its unexpected moments, but this one had a few that were particularly challenging. I’m not sure we could have gotten through the process without the ongoing input and support of the business owner’s wealth planner.
To my wealth planning friends, I say “thank you” for the value you bring to your clients as they work through the process of selling their business. To my friends who are attorneys, accountants, or other consultants, please encourage your business owners clients to establish a relationship with a wealth planner. To my current and future business owner clients, I say if you don’t have a relationship with a wealth planner, don’t wait until after you exit from your business to find someone to manage your funds. That right person can help you long before the funds come your way, and very likely you’ll have more funds with which to work.
Have I said how much I value having a wealth planner involved during the process of selling a business?
JIM CUMBEE is President of Tennessee Valley Group, Inc. a retainer-based business brokerage and transition mediation firm in Franklin, Tennessee. Cumbee is an attorney and has an MBA from Harvard Business School. Jim is the author of Home Run, A Pro’s Guide to Selling a Business. https://www.amazon.com/Home-Pros-Guide-Selling-Business/dp/1599329239 . He has a wide range of corporate and entrepreneurial experiences that make him one of the most sought-after business transition advisors in the state of Tennessee.