A question I’m often asked is ‘Should Market Conditions Play a Role in Whether or Not I Should Sell?’
There is an old saying, “Luck, Timing, Skill, don’t ever confuse the order!”
What this saying implies is that most people who have had success achieved it because of luck and timing, not skill. There is some truth to that.
Since I completed my first major transaction in 1990, what I’ve seen over the years is that “Process trumps luck, timing, and skill.” After receiving my industrial engineering degree, and then jumping into the transaction ‘game’ in my mid-20s, I began to see everything through the lens of process. I realized that most exit transactions go awry because very few people involved in M&A look at outcomes through the lens of an industrial engineering business process.
This is precisely why we created Exit Process Management™ as a field of study and improvement. When a private company applies this approach to the sale of its business, outcomes improve in all areas. Outcomes such as:
- Increased deal certainty.
- More qualified buyers to the table.
- Better and more controlled vendors, which increases trust throughout the entire exit process.
- Less stress on owners and managers during the grueling exit process.
- Higher exit multiples and pricing on average.
- Lower fees paid to vendors, due to the process being tight and organized.
Because of all of these improved outcomes, I rarely tell sellers to time the market. Exit process management allows you to achieve greater outcomes in any market; and, you never know if the market will be worse tomorrow in any case.