Starting Buying Selling a Business: What Are They Thinking?

Want to start a business?  Want to Buy a Business?  Want to Sell your business?  These interest are very different but there is one common element among these significant business decisions.  Money- .  While working with business owners and individuals with the process of buying and selling businesses, I consistently come across a common element that I believe would be surprising to most that are ” looking from the outside in”.

Money is always a determinant factor in the process, but so very often it is the other factors that create the motivation that steers the process.  As a  small business owner or one that recently started a business one wonders if the thoughts, trepidations, or concerns that you have are shared by others. It is common to wonder if others struggle with decisions such as you.  What are some of the thoughts others have regarding these important decisions.

Motives Behind Buying/Selling A Business

Buying A Business

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Currently I am working with business owners that are selling their businesses and it may be somewhat surprising that money is not the primary reason they have decided to sell their business.  But make no mistake all business owners want the maximum amount they can attain for their business but the reasons for selling  are varied and different.

I am also working with several individuals looking to buy businesses and they as well generally are looking for some sort of change.  Again they are looking  for value in the business they are seeking to buy, but the reasons they are looking to get into something different are also varied and diverse.

Many  people out there, and readers of business articles such as this are contemplating change.  So many of tomorrows business buyers are employees that are working for someone else today.  They are seeking change.  Many of the business owners  looking to sell their business are seeking change. Most all starting a business, buying a business, selling  a business are seeking change.  When talking with seller of businesses and potential buyers of businesses one learns the “why” is varied, and comprises similar thought processes I experienced as one that both started a business, bought several businesses and sold my own business as well.

Perspective very often if the difference maker in what drives this business decision. The excitement and energy that comes along with doing something new where the roads ahead are full of unknowns and optimism  can certainly provide different perspective than the business owner that has experienced the challenges and sees the roads behind him. The reasoning behind the decision to buy start or sell a business may look very similar but it really is the perspective that provides the different “take” on that reasoning.

I want to Buy a Business, I want to Start a Business because…” –

1)MONEY– want to make lots
2)PASSION– I love making widgets
3)ACCOMPLISHMENT– It just feels good
4)OBLIGATION– It was my families business
5)EXCITEMENT– I love working 24/7
6)CONTROL– I control my own destiny
7)OPPORTUNITY– I’m young-limitless
8) CHANGE– I want to do something different

“I want to sell my Business because “-

1)MONEY-Not making enough, money is less important
2)PASSION– I used to love making widgets
3)ACCOMPLISHMENT– The feeling of accomplishment is gone
4)OBLIGATION– My family is no longer around
5)EXCITEMENT– after working 24/7 I am now Burned out
6)CONTROL-Insurance Companies,employees,IRS,State,control my destiny
7)OPPORTUNITY– I feel old- exceeded my limit
8) CHANGE– I want to do something different

While the list could go on and on, Contrary to common belief—– Its not always JUST about the money.


Hands off or Hands On- What Type of Business Owner Are You?

What kind of business owner do you consider yourself-  Are you a Hands on Business Owner or do you consider yourself more of a big picture operator that consistently effort yourself to avoid the minutia of the business.  I think the majority of us are a hybrid of these 2 approaches.

When running a small business, or involved with a startup business,  on an almost daily basis you are faced with the question ” Do I do it myself or do I hire others to do it for me”.  Most all are aware of the concept Time is Money- but like so many other business concept we all draw the line in the sand at different places.  We are not always consistent with where we draw that line, and find that that line moves as or business moves or the economic climate around our business moves.

This question can be applied from basic business task of running to the post office to mail off some stuff  or calling some prospects to significant larger issues like hiring outside help to handle your marketing functions, doing my own website, or trying to do my own SEO .  I am a business broker and I help business owners and individuals in the process of buying or selling businesses.  Selling ones business is a very significant event and very often like so many other decisions a business owner will decide to try to sell the business themselves or hire someone to help sell their business.

Are You A Hands-On Person Like Me?

This decision is part of the never ending series of question a small business owner needs to answer. In my current profession as a business broker if Florida I am faced with these same similar questions on a daily basis.  Do I do it myself or subcontract out that task or role. ” Maybe someone else can do it better, but I can do it cheaper”, or “Maybe someone else can do it cheaper, but I can do it better…”    Relatively speaking I am a fairly hands-on person.

My previous business I had owned for 20 years I was fairly hands on as well.  I helped install our production equipment on day 1 of the business, I worked on the production line, I worked in the truck delivering product, helped troubleshoot our equipment, performed testing and so on. I also set our policies, accounting procedures, QC procedures and company philosophy.   I enjoy knowing and understanding as much detail about my business as possible. Ultimately I was able to build a team of 25+ employees that both allowed our business to grow and ultimately allowed me to run the business from 1500 miles away for 7 years.

Business Owner

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While others may say “I don’t want to know the details- I just want it to work”.  People reach business success with both approaches.  I have a good friend that owns a Plumbing business and has very little plumbing knowledge- he doesn’t want to.  He is a very good businessman, with a very successful plumbing business – he  is a big picture, hands-off guy and I think his wife may call me to fix their  leaky faucet before she ask him. But again he is a successful business owner.

The real question that comes in is at what point does the hands on approach limit your business growth.  When does- “I have to do it myself or it wont get done right”  approach become business limiting?  So many businesses do not make a transition to “count on others” and the business remains a certain size.  If the company goal is to stay a certain size then this approach may be both applicable and appropriate.

Hands-On VS Hands-Off Business Owner

But as one desires to grow a business to a certain size- “letting go” a little control is needed.   As working as a business broker in Florida very often I have business owners ask me can I just sell my business myself.  Here is how I summarize my true beliefs on this very important question.

Most business owners I know have a fairly full day- to say the least.  If your day is full already how can you possibly take on the task of trying to sell your business.  And I truly believe this.  Assuming selling your business is a fairly involved process how do you squeeze that continuous task into to your already packed stream of work.  Maybe you say to yourself,  I am going to devote a lot of time and effort towards selling my business, but then what suffers?

Does the business you are trying to sell now have the person steering the ship significantly pre-occupied?  During a recent speaking engagement I compared the process of running a business to running a marathon and addressed the need to finish strong.  Why run the race hard for 23 years or 23 miles and then stumble in for the last year/mile?   It is important when one is selling their business to try to finish strong.

I beleive one of the most important decision a business owner makes its the decision to sell their business.  Like so many decisions a business owner has to “do it myself” or hire others to do it.  Can I do cheaper?  Can I do it better? Do I have the time to do it?  Do I want to do it?Some of the similar questions one faces every day waking up as a business owner, but when selling ones business the stakes are significantly higher.

More than One Reason to Start or Buy a Business

How many times do you go to a cocktail party or just hang out with friends and hear things such as “I got this great idea for this new business”, or “Ive got this great idea for this new invention”, or  “If I were the boss and owned this business that I am working at, I would ______________.”   Words are said, heads nod, cocktail parties end and friends go home and nothing happens.

But for some the entrepreneur spirit rises to a greater height than just words, and they are able to turn those words into action.   What is the difference between those at the weekend cocktail party talking about it and the person that wakes up Monday morning and actually pursues it?  Very often, the inspiration to turn words into actions lie in the reasons why one want to pursue this path.  What are the reasons some turn those casual interest into action?

Buy A Business

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As a business broker I have many discussions with individuals that want to buy a business.  The process of buying a business or starting a business both are filled with trepidation, concern, excitement and pursuing of yet to realize results.  One of my functions in working with individuals in the process of buying a business starts with a  simple question – WHY?   Why do you want to buy a business? or in some cases   Why do you want to start a business?   There is a big difference between the person that talks about buying a business or starting a business and one that actually follows through on those aspirations.  And the reason why one wants to start or buy a business can be very different as well.

The below list is certainly not complete but explores some of the reasons one takes the next step.

Why Do You want to Buy a Business or Why do you want to Start a Business?

1. Sometimes its not just about the money, someone has a passion for a field or effort and just wants to immerse self into that field.

2. Others, want to turn filthy rich. Some studies will speak to the high percentage of individuals that gained significant personal wealth through buying a business or starting a business.

3. Someone may just want to have a job to count on.  If you are the boss (of yourself), Who is going to walk into your office and fire you.  No one.  You have control of your job security.  Maybe this venture will turn into more, but at this point, “I just need steady work”.

4. There is a want to start or buy a new business because a person wants out of existing business due to “burnout”, or fatigue and wants to enter a new venture to re-invigorate and try to re-discover the energy that comes along with an entrepreneurial new start.

5. There may be a compelling wish to pursue a new venture that is genuinely making peoples lives better, and a person has a need to fulfill this want of self- fulfillment.

Real Reason For Starting Your Own Business

People who want to be entrepreneurs cite reasons such as satisfying a self-determination, wanting to set their own hours, wanting to be their own boss, and wanting to test themselves, as reasons for starting a new business. But when we get down to it, most people want to start a business to gain financial freedom. Starting or buying a business in the pursue of financial gain and to provide a comfortable existence for self, family or others is a realistic and well-proven approach.  Starting or Buying a business so one can spend more time with family is both mis-guided and unrealistic.

The reasons one does start a business, or buys a business can vary greatly, and the list is longer than outlined above. But there are only 2 types of entrepreneurs or small businessman when it comes to buying a business or starting a business – Those that Do – And Those that Don’t.

I Want to Buy a Business… I Think

Starting a business is an exciting and potentially rewarding venture. Buying a business can also be an exciting and rewarding venture. If one wants to be an Entrepreneur or Small Business Owner what route does one take?. Is it best for you to start your own business. Is it best to buy an existing business. Or as in some cases (as in my business career) are you involved with both starting a business and then at some point buying a complimentary business or similar business(s) to add on to the business that you had started.

Buying And Selling A Business – Facts

I am in the business of helping business owners and individuals buy and sell businesses. I interact with both a lot of potential buyers and potential sellers . Understanding the key points below that outline some information regarding the future sale of your business, or if opportunity presents itself buying a business may benefit your situation:

1. ALL business owners are probable future business sellers

We all need some “exit strategy” from our business. Selling ones business for a nice gain is one of the more appealing exits from a business that exist. Prepare in advance for that fact. Also know and understand the value of what may be your largest asset- your business. Even if you are not plannining on selling your business- it makes business sense to know what the value of your largest asset actually Is. On my website we list 1000’s of businesses for sale. On this site one could locate “like’ businesses and use this information to approximate the value of their own business. But please keep in mind all businesses are different, but this would be a starting point to ballpark valuation.

2. Not all businesses that try to sell actually sell

Homes are bought and sold all the time. Some homes take much longer to sell than others (especially here in the South Florida market). But ultimately most all homes do sell. The same is not the case for all businesses that attempt to sell. The process of selling a business can be a long process, and that process does not always end with an executed contract and or sales agreement .

Buy Or Sell A Business

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3. Most people that say they want to buy a business don’t buy a business

Industry statistic regarding this fact vary, but the numbers may be as high as 9 out of 10 peoplethat actively pursue acquiring a business, talk to business owners about selling their business, and engage in some form of due diligence don’t buy a business. The reasons vary and go beyond the scope of this post, but money “surprisingly” is a determining factor in not having a potential business buyer buy a business.

4. If you have started your own business and are looking at ways to boost sales, buying another like business is a very viable growth business concept

Buying A Business Comes In All Shapes And Sizes

Eliminate the thought that buying a business means $100,000- $5,000,000+ deals. It can be as simple as buying an online web store for $200 that is a perfect fit and the additional traffic that it can drive to you is extremely beneficial. – Eliminate the thought that you need to have big piles of cash and the person selling their business is walking away with an all cash deal. MOST businesses sold today involve seller financing. The seller has both a vested interest in your success, and the seller is eliminating the need for you to go to a bank to finance the acquisition of the business. The seller is your bank. The seller understands their business and the likelihood of your success with their business, very often better than a banker would.

If you have started a business and need to “boost sales” and not sure how to gain additional customers or sales, buying a business that may be a competitor or a complimentary product of service can be an effective strategy. If you are thinking of starting a business, and want to “jump start” your effort buying a small business that you can build on and mold into your own is also a very viable strategy.

Thinking of buying a business? Will you be that 1 out of 10 that actually goes forward and makes that goal a reality.

Florida Business For sale Buying a Florida Business

Below please find reason to visit when pursuing the acquisition or Sale of a Florida Business

Top Reasons To Buy Or Sell A Business Via

1) If you are looking for a business broker or more specifically if you are seeking a business broker in south florida, or a SWFL business broker, or are seeking a business broker in fort myers florida, seeking a business broker in Sanibel Florida, or seeking a business broker in Florida to assist in your sale or burchase of your business.

2) If you want to sell your Florida business now, you are considering selling your Florida

Sell A Business

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business, want to discuss planning to sell your business, or are seeking to sell your business in Southwest Florida. Just call for a FREE consultation

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  • Florida Electrical contracting business for sale
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