If you are considering selling your business, you need to do everything you can to make sure you are putting your business in the best light. Fix broken equipment, put your financial records in order, revamp your web presence, expand your marketing – it’s a long list. A first impression with potential buyers can make or break a deal, so here’s an addition to the list you may not have considered:
You need to keep your political opinions to yourself.
It can be very tempting in this highly charged and politically divisive climate to wear your political views on your sleeve, but if you own a business and are considering selling any time in the near future – you just can’t.
Wait, don’t business leaders take a political stand all the time? Why can’t I?
Sure, some big companies take a political stance on issues they consider important (think Starbucks and hiring refugees, for example), but what these companies have that you don’t is an enormous customer base and media exposure enough to bring on new patrons who believe in their political ideology.
As a small business you can’t afford to potentially alienate half of your client base or to potentially offend half of the buyers who come in the door. Even if a buyer agrees with your political opinions, how does putting your opinions ahead of the best interest of the business look to someone who is about to write you a very big check? If you’ve been willing to drive off half of your revenue, what other risks have you taken that could potentially affect the next owner and their ability to remain profitable?
Keep personal political opinions to yourself and only share them with your non-business circle. If you share something political on social media, make sure it cannot be accessed by anyone who is a potential client or customer. Keep political statements off of your billboards, out of your ads and off your website. Lastly, don’t bring up your political affiliation or political beliefs in meetings with potential buyers.
The welfare of your business should be your first priority, no matter how angry politics makes you. Put your neutral business-self in front and leave the politics at home.
Do you have questions about what buyers consider when they look at potential businesses to buy? Feel free to leave any questions or comments here and we would be happy to help.
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