Hiring a Business Broker

Buying a Franchise
April 1, 2019
Using a Business Broker
April 2, 2019
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Hiring a Business Broker

Now is the time. From humble beginnings, you’ve grown your business to the success it is today. It has supported you and your family, but now it is time to sell and move on to the next chapter in life.

While you may be tempted to sell your business on your own, hiring a proven business broker can simplify the process and earn you a higher sale price.

But how do you hire the right broker?

During a phone conversation or an initial meeting, try to get a feel for how a broker stacks up in each of the following categories:

1. Experience

Going with an experienced company and broker is crucial. How long has the company been in business? How many deals do they close each year? Questions like these will ensure they do quality work, have ethical processes in place, and can represent you well. The individual broker’s experience can also be important. A broker that has sold businesses like yours in the past can anticipate challenges and know how to guide a deal to closing. On the other hand, a broker newer to the industry can bring energy and motivation to representing you, and as long as he has a strong company behind him, he can be just as effective as broker who has been in the business for 20 years.

2. Credentials

First and foremost, make sure your broker is properly licensed. From there, find out what industry organizations, local chambers and other groups they belong to. While licensing is the main required credential, the others can give insight as to their level of expertise and involvement in the business community.

3. Leadership

Are they well respected and connected in the community? Do they give back? Are they connected to attorneys, accountants, bankers and other professionals who can all play a role in getting your business sold?

4. Communication

At the beginning of the process, make sure your broker is open, honest and responsive to you, and is willing to take the time to understand you, your company and your goals. Further in the process, make sure the broker plans to communicate with you in a way that meets your expectations. Selling a business can take time, and there may not be any news on a week-to-week basis. Make sure there is a clear understanding between you and the broker as to how and when communication will take place.

5. Being a team player

Make sure that the broker you choose is not overly controlling. They should be more than open to having your attorney, accountant, and other professional advisors involved in the sale of your business. A good broker will not try to shut out others so that he can control the situation, but will recognize the importance each plays in the process, and will seek to include all while guiding the business to a successful sale. Balance is key, however, as you still want him to be assertive enough to keep the process moving forward.

6. That feeling

You will have more fun working with someone you like and respect. Look for the character and personality traits you value and appreciate. There are as many different types of business brokers as there are different types of people out there. Find one you feel comfortable with and confident in.

By asking the right questions, you can feel confident with the business broker you choose.

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