Is My Business Ready To Sell?

Selling your business requires careful preparation to attract buyers and ensure a smooth transition. Key factors include ensuring the business generates enough profit to support a CEO, maintaining clean financial records, documenting key processes, decoupling the brand from your personal identity, diversifying your customer base, ensuring the business can operate without you, and retaining employees through stay bonus agreements.

Mike Blake

5/23/20243 min read

Selling your business is a significant decision that requires careful preparation. To attract potential buyers and ensure a smooth transition, several key factors must be considered. Here's what you need to know:

Can Your Business Sustain a CEO and Management Team?

The first thing to consider is whether your business generates enough revenue to support a CEO and management team while still leaving room for profit. Buyers will look at the financial health of your business to determine if it's a viable investment. Ensuring that your business can comfortably pay its leadership team is crucial.

Are Your Financials Clean and Transparent?

Clean financials are essential when selling a business. While it's common for business owners to commingle personal and business expenses for tax purposes, this practice can deter buyers and lenders. Potential buyers want to see clear, transparent financial records that reflect the true performance of the business. Be prepared to demonstrate well-organized financial statements, even if it means paying more taxes.

Are Your Key Processes Well-Documented?

A saleable business is one that can operate smoothly without the owner's constant involvement. Ensure that your business processes are thoroughly documented. This includes creating checklists, flowcharts, and step-by-step guides that outline how the business operates. Well-documented processes make it easier for a new owner to take over and maintain the business's success.

Is the Brand Independent of Your Personal Identity?

If your brand is closely tied to your personal identity, it can be a hindrance to potential buyers. Decoupling your personal brand from the business brand makes the transition smoother and ensures that the brand retains its value after the sale. This involves creating a brand identity that can stand alone, independent of your personal reputation.

Do You Have High Customer Concentration?

Customer concentration is a significant risk for potential buyers. If one or a few customers account for a large portion of your revenue, it can be a red flag. Buyers will be concerned about the stability of these relationships after the sale. Diversifying your customer base can mitigate this risk and make your business more attractive to buyers.

How Many Hours Do You Work in the Business?

Buyers are often looking for a business that offers a good work-life balance. If you're working excessive hours and haven't taken a vacation in years, it signals that the business may be overly dependent on you. This dependency can deter buyers who are seeking a business that can operate independently. Ensure that the business can run smoothly without your constant involvement.

Do Your Employees Have Incentives to Stay?

A strong and stable workforce is critical to the success of a business transition. Buyers will be concerned about employee retention post-sale. Implementing stay bonus agreements can help ensure that key employees remain with the business during and after the transition. These agreements provide additional bonuses to employees who stay for a defined period, such as six months to a year, after the sale.


Preparing your business for sale involves addressing these critical factors to ensure a smooth transition and attract potential buyers. By focusing on financial transparency, process documentation, brand independence, customer diversification, manageable work hours, and employee retention, you can maximize the value and appeal of your business. Taking these steps will help you achieve a successful sale and pave the way for a seamless transition to new ownership.

Here is a video that goes over this topic as well:

The High Score Strategies team can help you prepare your business for sale. We've had clients who we have worked with for 6 months up to 10 years who have increased the value of their company before sale by over 300% and more. We'd be happy to chat about how we can help your company's value grow.