You Sold Your Business...Now What?

Barry Choi • November 21st, 2021

Do you book the next flight out to somewhere sunny, or are you already seeking out your next endeavor? Slow down, there are some important things to consider after selling your business.

Selling your business is bittersweet. On the one hand, the hard work you’ve put in is recognized with an excellent financial reward. But, on the other, you’re letting go of something that’s been a major part of your life. The decision to sell isn’teasy, and what happens afterward isn’t simple either.. but, with a bit of advance planning, you can ensure you’re headed in the right direction after selling your business.

Create a transition plan

Just because you sold your business doesn’t mean you’re going to exit immediately. dds are the buyer has negotiated a transition period where you’ll still be the voice of the company. You’ll want to come up with a plan where your duties are handed over to the new management team.

Keep in mind that it’s not just about you. The employees are also a vital part of the business you built. You’ll want to make sure they understand what this change means and how it affects them. You don’t need to meet with all of them individually, but it’s a good idea to say something to recognize how important they are moving forward and also to address any fears they may have about the transition.

With the work stuff out of the way, you can also create a transition plan for the next stage of your life. Maybe you want to travel, spend time volunteering, or embark on a new business venture. Whatever your goals are, now is the time to pursue them.

Get your finances in order

Throughout the sale process, you should speak with a corporate and tax lawyer. They’ll be able to advise you on how to minimize your tax burden. How the sale is structured can significantly impact how much tax you owe, which is why you want to seek the advice of a professional.

Once you have the cash in your bank account, it can be tempting to spend it, but you may want to wait a bit before you make a major purchase. Depending on how much you sold for you may now have access to wealth managers who deal with high net worth clients. They’ll be able to help you manage your money by diversifying your portfolio with investments such as stocks, mutual funds, real estate, and cryptocurrency.

While there’s no denying the benefits of a wealth manager, their fees can eat into your returns. Some people who sell their business prefer to dive into the world of investing on their own since they now have the time. Plus, there are tools available that make managing your accounts easier. Vyzer is one tool that helps those with multiple assets maintain control of their finances on their own while managing their investments.

Update your vital information

One thing you may want to tackle right away is your online profile. You spent years building contacts, so updating your LinkedIn profile is a quick way to show people that you’ve had a major change in your life and that you’re currently open to new opportunities.

Another thing you’ll want to take a look at is your estate plan. Updating your insurance plans is pretty straightforward, but your will might need a complete overhaul. Do you believe that your current executor will be able to handle the changes with your estate? Although you don’t want to rush things, you’ll want to get your affairs sorted out sooner rather than later.

Consider how you’ll tell your friends and family

While the sale of your company should be celebrated, not everyone will be as excited as you. Some of the people closest to you may become jealous. You’ll need to approach the subject of you selling your company cautiously since you won’t know how everyone will react.

You also need to consider what will happen if people start asking you for a loan. The amount they ask for may seem trivial to you, but it could be life-changing for them. It’s a sensitive subject, and most experts suggest that you should only lend money to friends and family if you’re alright with losing it. If you don’t want to lend any of your cash out, just say your wealth managers are handling your money now.

Learn to let go

Eventually, you’ll have very little or no involvement with the business that you built. You may disagree with the direction that the company is now headed towards, or you may have strong opinions. Either way, it’s none of your business, literally.

Continuing to have an emotional attachment to your business is normal, but you need to learn to let go. Your life is on a different path now, and you’ve got the resources to pursue any direction you want to take.

Consider other routes

Sometimes, selling doesn’t mean completely parting ways with your business. There are many business owners who, after selling, stick around to contribute to the company in other ways. Selling a business doesn’t always require an exit, but rather might be done for strategic or budgetary reasons.

Consider whether or not you can work with the new owners in a consulting capacity. After all, you know the business better than anyone else, so who better to guide it through a transition and offer advice on future endeavors than yourself? Keep an open mind when it comes to retaining a role within or adjacent to your old company. Chances are that after selling, it might take you a few years to find a new project you’re excited about, so continuing to work partially as a consultant might not be a bad idea.

Take a well-earned break

As a business owner, you likely put in countless extra hours hustling to see your venture succeed. After selling, many ex-business owners find themselves with a wealth of extra time, and they often don’t know what to do with it.

Once you’ve tied up all the loose ends that are involved with exiting your business, it might be a good idea to take that vacation you’ve been pushing off for a while. It’s probably even worth taking that bucket list trip you’ve dreamt about. Think of this time off as an opportunity to spend time with your family and reassess your priorities.You might be ready to jump right back into being an entrepreneur, but no one ever regrets spending more time with their family.

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