Succession and Exit Planning – where do you start?
Getting started is the hardest part of Succession and Exit Planning.
Surprisingly most business owners do not strategically plan at all. A small number have a basic long-term plan in their heads. An even smaller number have a written plan. Rarely is it shared with senior management let alone all employees. Yet the businesses that have a plan:
- perform better
- achieve bigger goals, and
- do it faster – than businesses that don’t plan
When ask why they don’t plan, the most common answer is “I don’t know where to start” or “I’m no good at spreadsheets”. Planning has nothing to do with spreadsheets.
What’s the key to getting effective planning?
A plan does not have to be complicated. The simpler the better. If it can’t be communicated to everyone in the organisation, then it’s not going to be effective. Getting the entire organisation included in implementing the plan makes a huge difference. Everyone who understands the goals can work towards them.
A strategic plan has, at its most basic level, the following components:
- Vision – what does a great future look like?
- Values – what do you stand for? What do you stand against?
- Passion and purpose – your “why”
- Market – an understanding of your ideal customers and what they want
- Product / services
- Sales and marketing – how people find what you offer and how you sell
- People – who you need to deliver your products and feel your passion
- Business model – what is needed to make sure you are making money and can grow?
- Operations – how do you deliver great services
Planning takes some time and clear thinking. If it were easy everyone would do it. It is not that hard if you make the effort to focus on what you want your business to do for you. Most business owners are looking for their business to fund their retirement. Strategic planning makes good sense if you want to secure your future. Time taken to plan now will save you:
- thousands £££’s
- lots of time in the future and
- may even allow you to achieve your dreams years in advance.
Taking the first step is always the hardest part of any journey into new territory. Succession and Exit Planning is no different.