If you are actively thinking about or ever have even considered the possibility of selling your company one day (or certainly if you have investors), there is one simple practice you should develop which only takes about 15 minutes a day and can be worth millions of dollars down the road.
This habit has two key parts and a huge bonus.
One: you need to start understanding who might be interested in buying your company in the future.
Two: you need to know what they value.
Three (the HUGE bonus): you need to start building value today in things potential acquirers are trying to do in the future.
“Skate to where the puck is going, not where it has been.” -Gretsky
The even better news is to make this happen, and become part of what I call your “Exit DNA”, you only need to make this a habit and give it about 15 minutes a day.
To get started, you will want to create a list of all the potential acquirers you can think of. Just make a simple list and make sure you have at least 5-6 (ideally 10 or more). Note: You should continually consider who might be added to that list.
Next, create Google Alerts for each of the companies so that you will automatically receive information when they are in the news and have relevant updates available.
Now, to start, you take five to ten minutes daily to scan and research the companies on your list. What you are looking for are their discussions, announcements and mentions of new and important initiatives. New products they plan to launch. New markets they plan to enter. Joint ventures they announce, etc. Make a note of these for each company, and start considering trends you are seeing across companies.
Part Three (Huge Bonus)
Finally, take five minutes after your review of companies on the list and just ask yourself daily, “Am I building products, services and values that seem to align with what my potential buyers are interested in?”
This simple 15 minute practice will create awareness for you of relevant market trends and keep your ultimate goal of exiting at the top of your mind. It will also help you understand your potential acquirers and what they value. It will force you, on a daily basis, to ensure you are building something valuable… and you will be able to clearly articulate these things to your employees, partners and investors.
Now, one really important thing here is ANY TIME someone on your list of potential acquirers does a transaction (merger, acquisition, investment, etc.) you are going to want to really dig into the deal. Things like:
- Who did they buy?
- How did they pay (stock deal, all cash, earn-out, etc.)?
- What were the multiples paid?
- Did they retain the team? Or just buy assets?
Learn as much as you can…
Then, perhaps most importantly, how do they articulate the REASON they did the deal? (The why!). This information is incredibly valuable.
There is information available to you every day that is solid gold. The more you understand how your potential buyers think and what they value, the more you can ensure your business is in their future path.
Imagine you start building massive value today in the areas your potential buyers are saying they want to go. You have one thing to do. One company. One product or service. Infuse that into your Exit DNA and when it comes time to sell you will be where your buyers are trying to go… and this might just make you a few extra million dollars.
For more ways to create exit value sign up via: maclackey.com/blog and note your interest in EXITS. We’ll keep you updated with insights, advice and content to make exits part of your DNA. #sellformillions
You may also enjoy this 3 minute YouTube Video on this simple 15 Minute Daily Habit: 15 Minutes, Potentially Worth Millions