When to Create an Exit Strategy

In business circles, it is often said that a business owner should think about an exit strategy from the day of opening the business. But how realistic is this? You would be hard-pressed to find a business owner thinking about getting rid of their business right from the very beginning. Instead, majority of them are thinking how they can take off and later on how to further improve it.

But perhaps the exit strategy should be looked at from a different perspective. Instead of the above perception, it can be portrayed as a long-term vision of the business owner themselves, such as where do they see themselves in an x amount of years. Moreover, a closer look at an exit strategy reveals that the very things one is required to work on when implementing the strategy are similar, if not identical, to the things any business owner needs to do to improve their business and bring it to the next level, so to speak.

No one can predict future, but we all have the ability to plan for it. With this in mind, below are a couple of areas business owners can include in their to-do list or incorporate into their strategy. These very areas are likewise one of the first places a new potential buyer looks when assessing your business.

Cash Flow

The chances are that all to-be buyers of your business will want to see a healthy cashflow in your business.


The first impression is very important in life as it enables another person to create a powerful mental image of whatever they encounter. The same applies to business. A shabby building, missing neon letters on the neon sign and other missteps project a negative image of your business to the minds of your customers and potential buyers alike.

Hidden Value

Business owners shouldn’t forget about the true value creation. With the previous point in mind, it is equally important to keep improving your true essences that create real value, such as customer lists, secret recipes, specialised computer programs etc.

Eliminate Surprises

It goes without saying that business owners should continually take care of the little things and issues that could, if unhandled, later result in major surprises. If there are any problems with a particular customer, resolve them. Make sure the lease is transferable and that your landlord is willing to cooperate. Doing so will eliminate the risk of any unresolved issues appearing out of nowhere and scaring potential buyers interested in your business.