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Emotional Roadblocks Coping With the Fear of Your Employees’ Futures During a Sale
When you’re the founder of a business, your employees become your second family. You may have retained the same employees for years, shared in their joys, and supported them through challenges. Even if you inherited or bought your business, it’s easy to feel these strong personal connections to your employees as you prepare to sell. We’re only human, after all. Every day, these employees dedicate hours of their lives and expertise to your vision. They have families of their own and dreams they want to accomplish. They’re active community members whose lives you influence every day. That’s a lot of pressure, and it’s often the biggest emotional obstacle blocking a founder or owner from selling their business. I’m often confronted with two concerns from clients during the sale of a business. Of course, many of them are worried about their family’s future. For years, their business has offered a steady, strong source of income. Selling is daunting, as with any life changes we make, and as a seller, you want to ensure your family’s future is secure. We can manage that together. But I often hear more worry from clients about their employees’ jobs. They feel guilty about what a sale of the business could mean for their dedicated, hardworking employees and their futures. Frankly, there is little you can do to secure the future for your employees. Once the sale of your business is finalized, the buyer is in the driver’s seat and can make determinations that are not limited by the sale. As you may remember from my November 2019 cover article, there are tactics you can use to incentivize employees to stay during the
sale of a business. Well, we also have ways to add a safety net for your employees to the stipulations of a sale. To start, you should be present during the weeks and months leading up to the closing of the sale of the business. We can help establish a timeline that will let you be available to help the buyer while also giving the buyer freedom to establish their role in the company. You can also work with the buyer to give them insight into the key players of your business. This can ensure the future and jobs of a large number of employees. Continuing to be involved in the sale process can give your employees peace of mind and help you prepare for the future you deserve. In addition, your presence in the company during these transitional phases is a huge benefit for the buyer. Think about it this way: Businesses
are bought by interested parties who are seeking an edge and advancement in the industry. Who better to help them achieve this than the experienced staff you worked so hard to build? Unfortunately, you cannot guarantee total job protection for your employees during a sale. It’s an unfortunate result of this sale of the business. But it may be necessary for the business you are passionate about to flourish long after you have left.
Regardless, Mailly Law is here to help you achieve your best possible outcome.
Happy holidays from all of us at Mailly Law!
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