In the wealth management industry, many advisors will discuss with their clients the importance of estate planning. Some may even work with estate planning attorneys and other professionals to ensure that their clients have a sound estate plan that meets their goals, and will even regularly review the plan as life continually evolves. Unfortunately, there are clients of some firms that have not completed the process yet, much less don’t review the plan periodically.
What is more alarming is that many advisors have not even completed the estate planning process for themselves and the businesses they’ve built. By not documenting your plan, you are in fact not taking care of yourself, your clients, or your team. Not only will it give your heirs, your clients, and your employees peace of mind, but it can also potentially increase the value of your business. It’s like the story of the cobbler that has no shoes – a familiar story we have heard in all types of businesses and industries. It's typically translated like, “One often neglects those closest to oneself.”
There is a process that will allow you to have an exit strategy that creates the best outcome for your needs, as well as the needs of your team and your clients. Many good exit strategies include going through the Mergers & Acquisition (M&A) process. This normally means merging your business with a similar company or being purchased by a larger firm. You could sell to a friendly individual, colleague, or peer, keep it as your cash cow, or liquidate and close the doors.
As mentioned in my previous NesBIT, sometimes “Doing Nothing is Doing Something” and gives you much needed time to reset and think about what’s next for you and your business. We will all one day have to leave our businesses, family and friends – this is inevitable and there is no stopping that outcome. Don’t you want to have the final say on what the outcome of your business will be?