Many business owners are really accidental entrepreneurs – and struggle to sell their business


The other day, a marketing expert asked me for “a hook” to explain what I do.

I replied, “I sell smaller companies to larger companies, I am an M&A Advisor”.

The truth is that I often say no to a lot of owners who ask me to sell their business, or hear no from a lot of buyers who take a look at my clients.

So painful.

You see, many business owners are really accidental entrepreneurs.

If you are a business owner, maybe you got good at something working for someone else.

Then you got ticked off at your boss, or the company goes out of business (because THAT owner failed to build business value), and someone hires you to do a job.

That job turns into two, then 10, then 50, and so on. Before you know it, you have to hire employees (ugh), and you have a business.

You work every day – Sundays too. 60, 80, 100 hours a week. Skip vacations. Miss your kids’ birthdays and soccer games.

Whatever it takes.

Why, because “no one else can do the job better than you”.

25 years go by and you feel an ache in your back, or your hip, or your head, and you say – “maybe I can sell this thing”.

So you ask your CPA for some names of brokers or M&A advisors and make some calls.

Then you get stabbed in the heart, when people like me tell you that your business is not really a business – it’s a job with employees, and late invoices.

Hard to relive 25 years – isn’t it?

If you want to change this outcome – there is hope, BUT it takes time and money to make your business sell-able.

It starts by swallowing your pride and doing the work ON your business.

You can turn things around over a few years, and come back to me with real profits, proven systems, and a key manager or two that you trust to run the business.

That is when I say, “I can sell your business”.

And the pain starts to go away.

Maybe you even start to smile – again.

It can happen, but it’s your choice:

“Whatever it takes” or “Whatever happens”

Which do you choose?

If you are a business owner who’d like to think more deeply about your business, try the What’s Next Self-Assessment for only $99.00

Updated: Apr 9, 2024

About the author
Paul Cronin of True North Advisors Group, LLC is a member of XPX Greater Boston

Your client is trying to decide whether to sell, transfer or wind down their business. I will help them decide, then create a plan to sell to the right buyers