With eight out of every ten businesses never selling, what can you do to make sure your business is firing on all cylinders? In this episode, we’ll be talking with Michelle Seiler Tucker, the preeminent expert on buying, selling, fixing, and growing businesses. Her proven track record boasts a 98% closing of offers she writes.
The secret lies in the way she partners and collaborates with business owners by understanding that their businesses are like their ‘babies’ and should be handled as such. She is also the author of the books, ‘Exit Rich,’ and ‘Sell Your Business for More than it’s worth.’
Join in this episode and let’s explore the strategies that Michelle uses to successfully sell businesses.
Things you will learn in this episode:
[00:01 – 08:10] Opening Segment
I introduce today’s guest Michelle Seiler TuckerMerger and Acquisition. Sold hundreds of businesses. Be sure to check out Guestio and start booking influential guests today. Michelle talks about her book, Exit Rich. 8 out of 10 businesses will not sell. The challenge businesses face today. Build a sustainable, scalable business. Link and offer below. Michelle gives some background on herself. fFather sold his business then moved to Texas. Witnesses the transformation of Austin.
[08:11 – 16:44] Getting into the Business of Selling Businesses
Michelle talks about what inspired her to follow her path. Curious about people. A love for writing. From corporate worker to VP. Missing entrepreneurship. Venturing into franchise selling. Putting Xerox on the map. Missing the foundation to handle success. Michelle shares about her college life. Started out in medical. High value on schooling and also entrepreneurship. Getting into selling businesses. Started by selling small businesses. Transitioned into million-dollar businesses. Learned the need to fix businesses first.
[16:45 – 32:41] How to Sell Your Business
Michelle walks us through the 6 P’s. Always innovate and market. People – building up people. Ask the Who’s. Don’t be next to the Who Product – Ask about your industry. The Covid example. Pivot – Know when it’s time to change. The Amazon example. How can we improve the experience. A word from our sponsor. The next 3 P’s Process – designed with the customer in mind. The Founder example. Vision vs. Integrator. Be well documented. Proprietary. Branding. Trademarks. Patents. Contracts. Databases.
[32:42 – 38:29] Closing Segment
The typical timeline to sell your business. The healthiest, high earning businesses sell the fastest. How owner compliance comes into play. Who you know, or What you know? If you the right person you can always grow. Network = Net worth. ThE RaNDoM RoUnD. How to reach out to Michelle. Links below. Final words.
Exit Rich: Sell Your Business for More than it’s Worth
Rich Dad, Poor Dad
You can connect with Michelle on LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Check out her website https://seilertucker.com/ to learn even more.
Did you love the value that we are putting out in the show? LEAVE A REVIEW and tell us what you think about the episode so we can continue putting out great content just for you! Share this episode and help someone who wants to connect with world-class people.
Jump on over to travischappell.com/makemypodcast and let my team make you your very own show!
If you want to learn how to build YOUR network, check out my website at travischappell.com. You can connect with me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Be sure to join The Lounge to become part of the community that’s setting up REAL relationships.
Listen to the podcast here
Michelle Seiler Tucker | How To Sell Your Business
If you’ve been following me or my story for any length of time, you know that I started a company called Guestio. One of the things that we are doing in 2022 is we’re building a concierge program called The Fast Pass that allows you to get booked on top-quality shows and platforms for the purpose of spreading awareness for your brand, grabbing attention and growing your credibility and authority.
If you are a seven-figure-plus entrepreneur and have a budget to bring in traffic, attention, credibility and authority to your brand, this might be a great program for you. Head over to TravisChappell.com/10K. Why 10K? It’s because we guarantee in this program that you’re going to be able to speak in front of 10,000 people within 90 days.
Imagine getting on a stage in front of 10,000 people to share your message and story. That’s exactly what we are doing inside of this program through virtual stages like podcasts, virtual events, YouTube channels or blogs. You name it. We are working on it and we are trying to get you booked on those platforms. There’s a quick application in TravisChappell.com/10K.
Right at the end of that application, it will prompt you to set up a phone call where you’ll jump on a call with me and we’ll talk through whether or not you’re a great fit for this program. Please act fast on this. Do not wait because we are only taking on 1 or 2 clients a week due to constraints with our team and the limited supply of high-quality shows and platforms that are out there in the market. If that’s you and you’re wanting to explode your brand in 2022, head over to TravisChappell.com/10K. Fill out the application and schedule a quick phone call. You and I will chat soon about whether or not this would be a great fit for you. Thanks.
In this episode, I’m sitting down with Michelle Seiler Tucker. Michelle is a veteran of mergers and acquisitions and has sold hundreds of businesses. She is recognized as the leading authority on buying, selling, fixing and growing businesses. She has a book out called Exit Rich, which we’re going to talk about. It’s going to be such a fun conversation.
First, quickly, if you are somebody who likes to go on podcasts as a guest, maybe you are an expert, a consultant to coach or an author, you’re looking to promote your ideas through getting on podcasts, then head over to the new software platform that we built out called Guestio. That’s Guestio.com and create a free account over there.
There are a lot of podcasters on there, searching for guests. There are a lot of guests on there searching for podcasters. It’s a great marketplace to connect with other people. We have some high-level folks on there that you can pay to bring on your show or go on their show with people that you normally wouldn’t have access to. It’s Guestio.com to check out some of those who create your account for free and start browsing through those lists. Michelle, thank you so much for joining me on the show.
Thank you, Travis. It’s a pleasure to be here. Thanks for having me.
Before we get into your story, I want to mention your book to make sure that we send some people over your way. Before we jump into the rest of the story here and build some context for the book, can you give me 1 or 2 quick high-level examples of what you want people to take from the book and then where they can go find it? We’ll then dive into context after that.
My book is Exit Rich. It’s an Inc. original and has been endorsed by Steve Forbes. Steve Forbes says, “8 out of 10 businesses will not sell. Everybody should read Exit Rich.” Sharon Lechter is my co-author who wrote Rich Dad Poor Dad with Robert Kiyosaki. She’s a five times New York Times Bestselling Author, plus she’s written several books for The Napoleon Hill Foundation. We have many other endorsements.8 out of 10 businesses will not sell. Click To Tweet
The business climate has changed. It used to be that startups were at great risk and 95% of startups got a business. Out of 27.6 million companies, those businesses that have been in business for 10 years or longer, 70% of those businesses are at risk of going out of business. You say wow because nobody hears that. Everybody’s used to the startups going out of business but nobody’s used to in ten years going out of business.
We hear about public companies all the time like Toys R Us was in business for 70 years and went out of business. Also Kmart, JCPenney, Montgomery Ward. GNC is closing down 900 locations and the list goes on. What you don’t hear about is all the small businesses on every street corner in every town and state across a great nation are dropping like flies and everybody is forced to sell for pennies on the dollar. They’re reinforced to close their business or even worse fall into bankruptcy. I wrote Exit Rich not to just think about selling your business but as a blueprint so you could build a sustainable and scalable business. When you are ready to sell, you have a sellable asset.
I wanted to ask that question to make sure that people understand what the book is. Where can they go to grab a copy?
They can go grab a copy at ExitRichBook.com. We’re in the middle of pre-sales. They can buy the book cheaper than on Amazon. It was $24.79. They will receive the digital copy immediately. Once they receive the digital copy, we will send them the hardcover to their doorstep when the book comes out. They will also get free lifetime access to Exit Rich Book Membership Club. That’s where they’ll receive video training from me and also documents.
Every document that you need in your business to be sustainable like non-compete, employee handbook, organizational charts, sample due diligence checklists, sample letter of intent, sample purchase agreements or sample closing documents is in our book club. They can download them as well. Plus, they’ll get a 30-day membership into Club CEOs, which is a mastermind. I started with like-minded entrepreneurs to do Q&A hot seats in masterminds.
I am glad that I asked about where to go pick up a copy. In this case, don’t go to Amazon. Go to ExitRichBook.com so you can get the book, as well as all of the other bonuses and downloads that Michelle’s talking about, including the masterminds and those templates. There’s so much value packed into the price of the book, which is amazing.
Every time we recommend a book here on the show, go do it now so you don’t forget. Life gets busy. Life gets in the way. Pick up a copy of Michelle’s book. Michelle, I want to talk with you a little bit about context and bring your story into this. Set the scene for us of your childhood home. Where’d you grow up? What were your parents like? What were your goals and aspirations at the time?
I was born and grew up in Long Beach, California. My father is from a family of twelve siblings. He woke up one day mad at his siblings and decided he was going to move me and my three brothers to Texas.
Where in Texas?
We moved to Austin. It was in the middle of the night. He’s like, “We’re moving.” He did it very quickly. My father owned an eggplant. He sold his business, moved us to Austin, Texas and moved away from the siblings. Three of them followed us to Texas. I grew up in Texas. I’ve lived in Austin, San Antonio, Dallas and then own a business in Houston. I’ve lived everywhere but Houston. I live in New Orleans.
You’ve probably witnessed the transformation of Austin then.
I was a little girl when I moved there. I moved there when I was eleven. I moved from San Antonio to Dallas. I’ve been back to Austin many times and it has transformed from when I was eleven years old.
At what point you decided that this was going to be the path for you? Your dad owned a business. Was he the only one in your family or were there multiple entrepreneurs that you learned from? What sparked the business?
He was the only one. I can’t say what sparked my interest but as a little girl, I was not your typical little girl. You’re not going to see me playing with toys or dolls. I would walk around with a notebook in my hand and a pen. I would walk up to strangers and ask them a bunch of questions. My mom always said, “She’s going to be the next Barbara Walter, Oprah or somebody famous.” I’m always curious about people, I knew I was going to be a writer at some point because I always like to write. I’ve always liked people.
I started in business ownership pretty young and own many different businesses. I got stuck in corporate America and went to work at Xerox. Xerox recruited me. I was there for about six months. My nickname was The Closer. When somebody couldn’t close a deal, they would call me. Within six months, my manager came to me and said, “Michelle, you need to apply for Regional Vice President. You have a good chance but you probably won’t get it because you’re going to be up against people who have been here for 5, 10 and 15 years and you’ve been here all of 6 months.”
I said, “If I’m not going to get it, why should I do it?” She said, “It’s a three-month process and you’ll learn a lot during the process.” I said, “I’ll do that.” She’s right. It was a three-month grueling process doing demonstrations, question and answers and presentations with all high-level executives. I ended up getting the position so I guess I really am a closer but then I realized how much I hated it.
To clarify, what’s the timeline here? Where are you in life at this point?
That was in ‘96 or ‘97.
What stage of your career?
I had owned publishing companies, printing businesses and different businesses that I had sold. I hated it. The worst decision that sometimes companies make is they promote the number one salesperson in the management. It’s not good. I liked the six-figure check and the benefits. I loved all that. I knew I could climb up that corporate ladder very quickly with Xerox but I missed entrepreneurship. I started researching for a business to buy and I stumbled across the franchise. My husband knew one of the partners and I said, “I want to buy a franchise from you. I’ll hire people and operate on the side.”
They said, “No. We know your husband and you. We know your nickname is The Closer. We want you to partner with us and then we’ll give you a franchise. We want you to help us put us on the map.” I said, “You’re not very successful. You have two locations but I’ll tell you what I’ll do. I’m not going to risk a six-figure position but I’ll try it for six months and see how it goes.”
I worked nights and weekends. I would fly out to different trade shows. I have my events. I ended up selling lots of franchises and made more money in six months than I made in an entire year at Xerox. I put them on the map and sold hundreds and hundreds of franchises for them. The problem became that they start overpromising and underdelivering because they do what a lot of companies do. They go out there on market and make the sales but didn’t build the foundation to handle the business.
If you don’t build a solid foundation on what I call the six cylinders or six Ps as outlined in Exit Rich, your house is going to come crumbling around you. That’s what was happening with them. It seemed like I was always fighting with them because I’m a team franchisee and they wanted me to be a team franchisor. I’m taking up for my clients. I ended up having them buy me out and I transitioned into my M&A career selling businesses. That was about 1999 or 2000.
If you’ll indulge me for a second, Michelle, I want to rewind the clock because I want to ask you about young adult life and career, where you went from high school and how you got into the position at Xerox, to begin with. A lot of people who read this show are early on in their career or their business career. Maybe they’re in their 40s but they’ve been working a job and then they’re transitioning into business. That would be valuable to at least talk about transitioning from high school into early adult life and then into Xerox. First off college, yes or no? How did it go if yes?
Yes, in college in a different field than what I’m in. I went back and became an M&AMI, Merger & Acquisition Master Intermediary, Senior Business Analyst and all this other stuff. I started in the medical profession. I have owned different businesses but I always had a sweet spot in the medical profession and thought I wanted to be a doctor or a surgical nurse. I wanted to do that type of stuff but that’s not the right path for me.
You placed it fairly high value on schooling then, yes?
I placed a high value on schooling. Everybody should. I met some amazing entrepreneurs that built multibillion-dollar companies and have an eighth-grade education. Have you ever read the book Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon Lechter?
I am for education but I’m also for entrepreneurship. I’m not going out there just getting a stable job working 9:00 to 5:00 and just working to pay your bills. I do believe in school education, going to college and getting mentors. Your network equals your net worth. You are whom you surround yourself with. I’ve got some brilliant business people that never went to college. They are amazing entrepreneurs.Your network equals your net worth. You are who you surround yourself with. Click To Tweet
You get into business. You own and sell a couple of businesses early on. Xerox recruited you and you come in. You go through that corporate ladder and end up getting connected with this franchise company. You’re done with that. They buy you out and you’re starting mergers and acquisitions. Talk to me about what that beginning stage looked like. Were you initially just consulting? We’re you putting deals together? Were you fine with selling businesses? What exactly were you doing there?
I was like, “When they buy me out, what am I going to do next?” I can sell franchises. I can do franchise development and franchise consulting because that’s what I did. I decided I’m going to transition to selling businesses because many buyers that I work with don’t want to buy a franchise. They want to buy an existing business. I thought to myself, how hard could it be to go from selling a new franchise to selling an existing business?” It’s very different and much more difficult because there are a lot more moving parts to selling an existing business than to selling a brand-new franchise.
I transitioned into selling businesses. I started my firm. I started selling small businesses at the beginning like your typical restaurants, flower shops, laundromats, car washes and things of that nature. I transition pretty quickly into selling larger businesses, $10 million and up. I also figured out pretty quickly that 8 out of 10 businesses won’t sell and Steve Forbes is right. I need to start fixing businesses.
I started with a Build to Sell program so the business is sellable. Most businesses that go on the market will never sell. That’s when I transitioned into buying and partnering with business owners with my Build to Sell Method, getting businesses to operate on a six Ps and then building them to sell to one of our buyers. We have over 25,000 buyers in our database.
Michelle, you mentioned the six Ps a couple of times. I’m sure the audience’s interest is peaked in that regard. Can you walk us through those quickly and why they’re so important?
They’re very important because the franchisor that I partnered with never built a solid foundation. A lot of businesses don’t. You have to ask yourself, “Why are 70% of businesses gone out of business after being in business for ten years?” There are many reasons for that. Number one is because they never build that solid foundation or they stop what I call AIM. AIM is Always Innovate and Market. It’s like Toys R Us. They did nothing different for 70 years. Blockbuster saw Netflix and what Netflix was doing. They had the opportunity to buy them but they did nothing. They became obsolete.
The first P is People. You don’t build a business. You build people and people build the business. Many business owners work in their business rather than on their business. Many business owners have created a job that they go to work every day versus a business that works for them. People is very important. If you want to build a sustainable business that runs without you, you need to have the right people in the right seats.You don’t build a business. You build people, and the people build the business. Click To Tweet
You need to ask the who question. “Who opens the doors? Who deals with customer service, tech issues, IT security, theft, accounting, legal issues, manufacturing, distribution and logistics?” The list goes on and on. The clue here is you should never be next to the who. You need to build a business that runs without you because buyers want to buy a business, not a job. I’ll give you a couple of quick examples. One dentist has assistants. If you pull that dentist out of the practice, what do you have? You have no business. Chiropractic is the same thing. Pull that chiropractic out of the business, what do you have? The list goes on and on. Businesses are not sellable if they are dependent upon the owner. You have to focus on your strengths and hire out your weaknesses.
You need to have a name in your business that does all the who stuff. You should have somebody that handles the accounting. You’re not going to do this in the beginning. This takes time. In the beginning when you start a business or buy a business, you’re wearing a lot of different hats. The goal is to stop wearing all those hats, start putting the right people in the right seat and assign the right people to the different tasks in your business. It shouldn’t be you because if your business is dependent upon you and something happens to you, you might not have a business anymore or it’s not sellable.
The second P is Product. Product is big. Think about COVID. You have to ask yourself, “Is my industry on a way up or on a way out?” You can have an industry that’s thriving and all of a sudden catastrophic event happens like COVID, a hurricane or something that causes your industry to die. You got to ask yourself, “Is my industry thriving or dying?” Do you have an Amazon or a Blockbuster?
If you have an Amazon, great. If you have a blockbuster, you need to Pivot, which is another P. You need to think outside the box, associate with a mentor, go to masterminds, get in the right networking group and start asking transformational questions. First and foremost, what business are you in? What do you do well? What business should you be in? I’ll give you a quick example of this.
Amazon started and they asked themselves, “What business are we in?” They said, “We’re in the book business. We sell books.” “What do we do well?” “We do fulfillment well.” “What business should we be in?” They said, “We should be in the fulfillment business.” Those three questions right there transformed Amazon from a bookseller to a multibillion-dollar worldwide conglomerate that they are now.
Product is huge. If you’re in the wrong industry, you don’t pivot, you don’t acquire congruent revenue streams and you don’t do something diversified, then you could be out of business very quickly. That’s what happens to Toys R Us. Toys R Us stopped innovating. Whoever makes the easiest for the consumer to do business with them is a company that’s winning. Amazon is winning because they make it so easy to do business with them.
I have six packages on my porch to prove it.
Me too. When I go home, there are ten. They just bought a bunch of planes so they could improve the customer experience and get packages there quicker.
I saw they added twelve planes to start their fleet and probably bought on a discount from airlines that had to contract during COVID as well.
They’re smart. Amazon’s always about the customer experience. “How can we get it there? How can we improve the customer experience? How can we get there faster? How can we make ourselves better?” They are all about making it easy for the consumer to do business with them. Process is the third P, which is very important. Most business owners don’t think about processes. They never develop a process until something bad in their company happens.
If somebody gets hurt in a warehouse, they’re like, “We need a safety process for that.” If a customer complains, they’re like, “We need a process for that.” Processes should be designed from the beginning with the customer experience in mind. That’s what Amazon and McDonald’s does. Did you ever watch the movie The Founder?
You got to watch that movie. Back in the ‘40s, the McDonald’s brothers started McDonald’s and they asked themselves this question, “What do we want to do?” “We want to create a restaurant that delivers great tasting food and fast in two minutes or less.” In the ‘40s, the Sonic type drives up but back then, the food was always cold and the order was always wrong. It took so long to get their food. The McDonald’s brother said, “This is our customer experience that we want to achieve. We want customers to get great-tasting food. It’s hot and delivered in two minutes or less.”
They go to empty tennis courts, take all their employees, map their processes out on the tennis court and then erase it. They’re there all day long to figure out who’s going to take the customer orders, toast the buns, cook the burgers, put the pickles on the bun and give it to the client in two minutes or less. That process is designed with that customer experience in mind, which is why you can eat at a McDonald’s anywhere in the world and receive the same experience.
If somebody’s reading and they’re entrepreneurial, more sales and visionary-minded, how do you recommend somebody to start building processes?
Visionary people are not the best process people. You have a visionary and an integrator. The visionary is the entrepreneur. They have big-picture ideas and are big visionaries. They know how to blow everything up but they don’t know how to make it all work. You always have to have an integrator who can take that visionary idea and incorporate that into the business and the different departments with the managers and make the vision come to life. That takes an integrator. That’s not a visionary. Most visionaries are terrible process people.
I’m laughing because I’m speaking from experience there. I won’t bore you with any more process questions. Let’s go on to the fourth P.
The only other thing I want to add to process is it should also be productive and efficient. Most importantly, they need to be well-documented. You need to have policy and procedure manuals and SOP checklists. Make sure the clients are signed off on it because if you’re selling a business $10, $15, $20, $30, $40 or $50 million, guess what the buyer’s going to want? They’re going to want to see this. A lot of businesses don’t have processes in writing. You’d be surprised how many don’t have that.
The fourth P and the most valuable P mean the highest drivers. Most businesses are evaluated on a multiple of EBITDA, Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization. The highest multiple is driven by this P, Proprietary. There are six pillars to proprietary. I’ll go through them quickly for you. Number one is branding. The more well-branded a business is, the more we can sell its business for as long as that brand is still relevant in the mind of the consumer. Meaning that nobody’s going to pay anything for Blockbuster because Blockbuster went bust. Who’s the biggest brand in the world? Do you know?Build your brand because the more well-branded you are, the more you will get for the sale of your business. Click To Tweet
I would guess Amazon or Apple.
You got the A right but it’s Apple.
That was the second guess. I don’t know if you heard the second guess there.
I didn’t hear the second guess. Apple alone is worth $189 billion. That’s without furniture fixtures, equipment, inventory, assets, EBITDA or anything. Just the brand. Build your brand because the more well-branded you are, the more that you will get for the sell of your business. The other thing that’s valuable in business is trademarks. You’d be surprised how many business owners open up a company, especially startups.
They go get a state trademark but they never check the Federal database to see if there’s a Federal trademark available. They might be operating underneath a state trademark, never knowing that somebody else has a Federal trademark and they can all of a sudden get cease and desist letter so they have to stop using that name. If you have to stop using your company name, you got to rebrand all over again. There goes your branding. Protect your company name and slogan if you have a slogan. Even with Exit Rich, I registered that. Make sure you protect it. Also, patents are huge. If you have anything unique, get a patent on it. Do you ever watch Shark Tank?
What are the questions they always ask? “Do you have a patent?” Contracts are also very valuable, manufacturing contracts and distributor contracts. If you’re a franchisor starting, you have franchisee contracts and licensee contracts. The most valuable of all contracts are your client contracts. There are a lot of companies. We’re selling a commercial landscape that has a bunch of commercial contracts. We sell an agricultural business that has 150 contracts. Buyers love client contracts because they want to walk into a business that has recurring revenue and WIP or what we call Work In Progress. That has money coming and flowing in. Contracts are big. Here’s the biggest mistake with contracts, Travis. Most business owners never include the two-sentence transferability clause.
What is that?
It says this contract is transferable upon the sale of this business. It has to because here’s the deal. Ninety-nine percent of all sales are asset sales. They’re not stock sales. Unless your contract is transferable, then a deal is not going to happen. Many deals fall apart because the contracts are not transferable. Add a two-sentence transferability clause. It sounds simple but it’s huge and it can make or break your deal.
The other valuable thing in IP is databases. You could be losing money on a business. You could be hemorrhaging. If you have any of these synergies like a contract, a customer database or a patent, you could still sell your business for a lot of money. Facebook paid $19 billion for WhatsApp and WhatsApp was hemorrhaging. WhatsApp had a synergy that Facebook wanted. They had a billion users and Facebook knew they could ROI that and get a return on their investment. Databases are huge, especially if they can be retargeted and repurposed.
The other thing in IP is let’s say that you have a diet company or weight loss and you’re being endorsed by Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Open Winfrey or somebody like that. Celebrity endorsements are huge and very difficult to get. A strategic buyer would be interested in your business because they want that celebrity endorsement. They might be able to use them for other products they have. Let’s say that you’re manufacturing bedding and you’re number one on Wayfair. Do you know how many would love to be number one on Wayfair? It’s the same thing with Amazon. That’s all IP.
The fifth P is Patrons, which is the feel of your business. These are your customer base. Most businesses fall under the 80/20 rule where 80% of their business comes from 20% of their clients. If they lose 1 or 2 clients, they could be out of business. You want to build customer diversification, not customer concentration and make sure you’re asking your clients, “What do you need? What do you want? How can I make it easier for you to do business with us?” A lot of businesses too are aging out. They’ve been in business for 10, 15, 20 or 30 years and their customers are aging out.
The last P is probably everybody’s favorite P and why we’re all in business. It is Profits. Everybody wants to make money. The reason I put profits last is that clients come to me all the time and say, “Michelle, I have a profit problem.” I’m like, “No, you don’t. You have a people problem. You don’t have the right people in the right seats. You have a process problem or you haven’t protected your IP.” Profits is never the problem. It’s always a symptom of not running on 1 of the other 5 Ps.
If assuming you have all the six Ps done and buttoned up, at this point, that’s when you can start to look to exit the business that you’re in.
Where do people go to enroll in somebody’s services like you? If somebody’s like, “I checked all the boxes when you’re talking through them. I can maybe use a little bit of help here and there but for the most part, we got everything ironed out,” how do they go about selling their business? What’s a typical timeline? This is one thing that a lot of people go severely underestimate.
The typical timeline is all over the map. The average time it takes to sell a business in the United States is about a year. Companies that have EBITDA of over $1 million and operate pretty much on all six Ps will sell quickly. Why do those businesses sell more quickly? It’s because there are more buyers for good businesses and they’re all good businesses to buy. There are private equity groups and strategic buyers.
There are five different types of buyers. Private equities, strategic competitors and serial entrepreneurs are all looking for those types of businesses and they’re not as easy to find. Most of our businesses have an EBITDA of over $1 million but we sell them pretty quickly. Businesses that are less than that could take longer. It depends upon the industry, where it’s located and how involved is the owner. Do they operate in all six cylinders? There are a lot of different things. Plus, it depends on how compliant the owner is. A lot of times the business owner holds up to sell.
I wish I had more time to ask you too about the buying side but that’s a whole separate conversation.
I can come back on.
I was going to say. We can have you back on do a part two at some point to talk about what to look for when you buy businesses, how to do it without paying all upfront and how to do different deal structures and stuff.
That’s my next book, Travis.
When that comes out, we’ll bring you back on, Michelle. In an effort to button up this conversation, I got to ask you this one question about networking and then we’re going to move into the last segment here, The Random Round. Here’s my question on this and I’m curious to hear your answer because you’re extremely well educated and you know your stuff extremely well but you also have some amazing relationships which you’ve already talked about. Who you know or what you know, Michelle, which of those two do you find to be the more important asset in life and why?
I would say who you know.
Why is that?
I’ve met so many amazing people. If you meet the right person, you can always grow. You can grow yourself and your business by meeting the right person and developing that relationship. I’ve met Arnold Schwarzenegger and Rudy Giuliani. Hate him or love him, I met Donald Trump. Also, Eric Trump. Some of these individuals have helped me grow as a person and grow my company. I’ve met Donna Karan, Randi Zuckerberg and Mark Zuckerberg’s sisters. A lot of it is important to be knowledgeable but it’s about whom you know. Your network equals your net worth. You can grow much more as an entrepreneur with the right network.
I could not agree more. That is exactly why we started this show. I appreciate you coming on, Michelle. Let’s move into the last segment, The Random Round. Just quick random questions and quick random answers. What’s a profession other than your own do you think would be fun to attempt?
That’s funny because I own many different businesses in many different industries but one thing I’ve always thought would be fun is fashion design.
If you could sit on a park bench with someone, past or present, and chat for an hour, who would it be?
How do you like to consume content? Books, audiobooks, blogs, podcasts or videos?
All of the above. I try to read at least a couple of chapters a day on books. I do listen to audio, Bob Proctor primarily. I make my ten-year-old listen to him too. All of the Bob Podcast books and audio.
What is your go-to pump-up song?
I like Money, Money, Money.
What is something that you are just not very good at?
Probably not very good at not being direct.
Michelle, thanks so much for coming on. As we get everything wrapped up here, what is one place online where our readers can go to connect with you the most?
If you read this conversation and you didn’t get anything out of it, it’s because you weren’t paying attention. If you did get something out of it, which is everybody, then go to ExitRichBook.com. Pick up a copy of Michelle’s book and dive deep into each of these six Ps that we’re talking about. Learn how to implement these in your business so that you don’t wake up in 5 or 10 years trying to sell and frustrated and end up having to close everything down instead of exiting for a big payday. Michelle, thank you so much for coming on the show and providing such amazing tactical, practical advice and strategies for the entrepreneurs that are in the audience. I had a fantastic time chatting with you.
Thank you, Travis. It was a pleasure. I’m looking forward to coming back on.
- Michelle Seiler Tucker
- Exit Rich
- Rich Dad Poor Dad
- Club CEOs
- Build to Sell Program
Love the show? Subscribe, rate, review, and share! https://www.seilertucker.com/podcast