Ever wonder why some businesses sell for a fortune while others barely make the cut? The secret might not lie in the numbers, but in the team behind them. If you’re dreaming of that lucrative exit, the path to multiplying your business value begins not with your product or your sales strategy, but with the team you build. Building a high-value team is pivotal in elevating your business’s sale price.
Teamwork makes the dream work. Here’s why that’s also true when you’re preparing your small business for an exit:
Your Team is the Future Leadership
Ensure you cultivate leaders within your team who demonstrate your business’s ability to thrive independently of you, the founder. By placing these team members in leadership roles, you empower them to step up, signaling to potential buyers that your business can run without you in the event of a sale.
An Innovative Team Drives Growth
Creating an environment where innovation is encouraged and rewarded ensures your business thrives and will continue to do so after it’s sold. A team driven by innovation guarantees your product or service remains competitive, appealing to buyers looking for businesses with growth potential that command a premium.
Team Focus Leads to Rising Profits
Balance your team’s innovative drive with a focus on refining existing products that drive profit. A stable product offering, steadily growing in profitability, shows buyers a scalable business model, increasing your business’s attractiveness.
The Team Helps You Emotionally Detach
Foster a culture where the team operates independently of you and focuses on the business’s success rather than your sole responsibility. This prepares the business to operate—and thrive—without you as the founder, making it more sellable.
How Hiring a CEO Led to a $4.5 Million Exit
In 2014, Caitlin Pyle started Proofread Anywhere, a training center and community for aspiring proofreaders in the niche of court-reporting. The business quickly expanded, offering courses, workshops, and e-books for independent proofreaders and generating up to $300,000 in monthly revenue. In an interview with TheyGotAcquired, Pyle shared that this rapid growth led to burnout, prompting her to hire Cody Lister as CEO so she could focus on her health. She realized that Proofread Anywhere could soar without her, and in 2022, Pyle felt it was time to move on from the business she had lovingly built. Despite having a lean team of herself, the CEO, and six contractors, she sold the business for $4.5M to Onfolio Holdings. Their CEO Dominic Wells is confident that “Proofread Anywhere will continue to thrive even after Caitlin has stepped back,” as reported by TheyGotAcquired.
Keep these four reasons at the forefront of your team decisions, and your business is well on its way to attracting high-value offers from potential buyers.
Conclusion and Actionables
The team behind your business is its most valuable asset on the path to a lucrative exit. Embrace these four team-building strategies to not only boost your business’s operational efficiency but also its market value. Action steps for you include:
- Identify and Develop Future Leaders: Look within your team for potential leaders and invest in their growth.
- Cultivate a Culture of Innovation: Encourage ideas and improvements that keep your offerings competitive.
- Focus on What Works: Get your team to streamline your offers to emphasize profitability and scalability.
- Prepare for Independence: Build operational systems that allow your business to thrive without your daily involvement.
By fostering a team that embodies leadership, innovation, profitability, and independence, you make your business irresistible to buyers. Strategic planning and regular assessments further ensure you’re ready for a sale that surpasses both your financial and personal aspirations.