Most business owners and people considering business ownership have a particular type of personality. You could call it type-A, but it’s a bit more nuanced than that. Entrepreneurs are a tough bunch, used to taking risks and working hard to turn those risks into rewards. They’re comfortable with the idea that the buck stops with them and if they fail they only have themselves to blame.
This grit-based type of personality serves a business owner well. It gets you out of bed in the morning, it drives you to succeed. It’s a good thing – most of the time.
Here’s where having this type of personality can hang you up. The process required to buy a business.
The business transaction process can be a bit arduous. While an entrepreneur will probably have no trouble with the list of things that need to be accomplished – it can be extremely tough to navigate the difficulties that arise during the purchase of a business because no ONE person can be in control. That’s right. You can’t control the process.
This can cause entrepreneurs to balk at basically any part of the business transaction. From refusing to sign an industry-standard NDA because you didn’t write it, refusing to share your address in order to access proprietary information about a business you are considering, demanding an in-person walk through of a business location before you’ve ever asked a single question of the seller – the list goes on and on.
Look, we get it. When you’re used to being the one in command it can be deeply difficult to relent to someone else’s rules. Here’s what you have to remember. The business transaction process exists and proceeds the way it does for a reason. It works to protect businesses for sale while they are being sold. If it was your business on the market – you would absolutely demand that everyone play by the rules so your business wouldn’t falter.
If you are considering buying a business, you are going to have to let go of the notion that you will be in control. You have to sign NDAs. You have to provide your personal information in order to receive proprietary information about a business. You have to be patient with the seller when they are collecting the documentation you requested. You have to wait for people to call you or email you back. You can’t demand that everyone involved do what you want, when you want it – and then get upset when it doesn’t happen.
We aren’t saying that you should relent to everything. Buying a business is a huge decision and you should have timely access to all of the information you need to make an educated decision. What we are saying is you need to be flexible and patient in a way you may not be used to.
Are you thinking about buying a business and want to know more about what the process looks like? Would you like to know more about the timeline of a business transaction? Ask us! Leave any questions or comments and we would be happy to help.
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