Business owners can feel indifferent about selling their ambulance businesses until they are staring at a full asking price offer from a buyer. It is at that point that letting go of the legacy they have built through their ambulance business becomes intensely “real” and unbelievably emotional. Not being prepared for this wave of confusing emotion in the final stages of a sale can lead to owners sabotaging their own dream deal.
All ambulance business owners are forced to deal with this reality. I think ambulance business owners are particularly vulnerable to the affects of it because of the immense sacrifices that are made along the way of building a successful ambulance business. So, how can owners deal with the emotional component of selling their ambulance business? Here are three suggestions.
Recognize upfront that this is going to be an issue throughout the sale process and especially towards the end of the sale.
If you are not surprised by the emotional distractions of selling your ambulance business, there is less chance that they will prevent you from accomplishing your transaction goals. The key is to focus intently on what the sale of your business will allow you to accomplish in the future—not what it has done for you or what you have done for it in the past. If selling is going to allow you more time with your grandkids, place a picture of your grandkids or letters from your grandkids close by throughout the process. Simple methods like this can allow you to keep focused and prevent powerful, emotional surprises from disrupting the process late in the game.
Surround yourself with professionals who can help guide you through this emotional process and protect you from yourself.
In a sale this week, my client became overcome with emotion. In response to his fear and emotional confusion, he attempted to sabotage a deal by demanding something from the buyer that was far beyond the agreed deal points. He knew the existing deal on the table was more than fair. In fact, it was full asking price cash offer. Luckily, he had an experienced professional prepared to help hold his hand through the process and to protect him from himself.
Consider the emotional impact of letting go of your business when choosing your buyer.
Recognizing that going through with your business sale will likely be an emotional challenge to overcome, choose a buyer that will make the decision easier for you. Choosing a buyer that is like minded and that will be a good trustee of the legacy you have created through your ambulance business will be an important part of controlling the emotional component of the sale. Selling to someone you do not like or do not trust will only accentuate emotional confusion at the closing table.
The more prepared you are to deal with the emotional component of selling your ambulance business, the more likely you will have a seamless ambulance business sale and rewarding transition to the next chapter of your life.