Finding The Right Business
You’ve decided that Business Ownership is the right thing for you, so now what?
The first step in finding the right business is to determine if you are truly a motivated Buyer…
Elsewhere on this website, we pointed out the statistic that an Advisor must field 100 Buyer inquiries on average, to get to just ONE Buyer. Why is that? From our observation, preparation is the key. Too many times, we find prospective “Buyers” actively looking for a business to buy, without doing the necessary personal preparation in addition to building a team of professionals up front. Then, when they are faced with an opportunity that fits their criteria, they either don’t recognize it or not adequately prepared to move forward.
Here are just some of the very first questions that need to be explored if you’re thinking about starting or buying your own business:
- Do you know what kind of business you want?
- Are you “technically” qualified and experienced enough to run the type of business you want?
- Do you have the temperament to deal with fickle customers, demanding creditors, and difficult employees?
- Do you have the attention to detail that most businesses demand?
- Can you deal with the bookkeeping requirements of the business?
- Are you prepared to “eat, sleep, and drink” the business 24-hours a day, 7 days a week (because that’s what it frequently takes) at least in the beginning?
- Can you deal with adversity without losing your cool?
- Can you deal with uncertainty without losing sleep?
- Are you a good “people person” who can successfully deal with customers, suppliers and employees?
- Can you accept potentially significant financial loss investing in a business exposes you to?
The second step in finding the right business is to determine why…
Beyond the obvious reason of making money, it is also important to determine your key reason(s) for getting into business – examples can be:
- Buying a job to earn a living
- Acquiring an attractive lease or other real estate
- Earning prestige (many business owners are respected community leaders)
- Eliminating competition if you already have a business
- Buying a hobby or retirement occupation
- Seeking self-fulfillment and control of your own destiny
- Seeking an opportunity for a child or other family member
Now ask yourself, what is it that I really like to do, and what is it that I’m good at? If you have determined that you are a truly motivated buyer and you know the reasons that you want to own and operate a business, then you should begin searching only for those businesses that match what you like to do and ones that match your skills, capabilities and knowledge. With the proper financial preparation in advance, you will also quickly identify which business opportunities you can afford. Proper preparation will save both you and the Advisors you work with a lot of time in the search and screening process.
The third step in finding the right business is to discover your “Big Why”…
For those willing to do the extra homework, finding your “Big Why” is probably one of the most critical steps in not only finding the right business, but having one that achieves a high level of success, profitability and sustainability. A common theme among all great leaders is the have a “Big Why” and can quickly tell you what it is.
How many times have you set a goal and not kept it? Why? Typically it’s because we set goals with our head – not digging deeply enough into our hearts with why we set the goal in the first place. When our head and our heart (emotions) get into alignment, that’s when the real magic happens because our thoughts and actions are backed by resolve.
The “Big Why” may be a life purpose, a goal or vision that one is passionate about, or simply an important need. Without a “Big Why” we eventually lose motivation to do the work necessary to accomplish great things. Our “Big Why” may have nothing to do with the actual business we buy, but it becomes the driver to success as all things in life are intertwined with each other.
When you started this section on Finding The Right Business, you probably thought it would be chocked full of information pertaining to the process of buying a business – but it’s not. Finding The Right Business starts with YOU, the Buyer.
It’s critical that you get right with yourself first, before you begin looking for the perfect business to buy or start. Are you truly a motivated Buyer? What’s the right Business for you to own and operate? Who are the critical team members that you need to successfully complete a transaction? Answer all this and looking for the actual business itself becomes easy and secondary.
Too often we see Buyer prospects simply “chasing cash flow” without first understanding any of the above. They will analyze business after business without success, wasting a great deal of time personally and with those they engage with. Intemedior Business Advisors team of Trusted Advisors works closely with Buyers to eliminate as much of the frustration and confusion most Buyers experience in the acquisition process as possible.