It’s a poignant question for business owners when you really think about it.  Taking a step back and looking at a business objectively is very difficult when it’s the product of your own blood, sweat & tears.

Still, as part of the valuation process it is something that every business owner should do.  Not just once, when the time comes to actually put the business up for sale, but on a regular basis, as it can help identify some of its key value-killers (and also value drivers!).  There’s really nothing quite like looking at a business from the perspective of a potential purchaser or investor.

So think about it.  WOULD you buy your business?  Really? 

What would YOU want to know about it before making a decision?

Looking from the outside in, what risks would you see?  How long would you want to retain the current owner in their existing capacity to help minimise these risks?

What opportunities would you see?

What price would you put on the business?  How would you want payments structured?

These are the questions business buyers and investors are asking themselves every day, and if you are going to achieve parity between their expectations and yours when the time comes to exit, you should be asking them too.

Today.  And regularly thereafter.