Succession Planning

Succession planning

Something rarely talked about among entrepreneurs is succession planning. This is a contingency plan for such time as key positions or owners within the business need to be replaced either temporarily or permanently. It is especially important in family owned businesses, where the plan is for the next generation to take over the business.

Businesses need to have key people that are able to cover operations and management should there be illness, accidents, or death within the team. This ensures that the business is still able to operate and meet its obligations to its customers. For many businesses this is a trusted employee or spouse. Even then, these questions need to be addressed: Has it been established they have the necessary information to seamlessly step in to that role? Do they know where to find the information should they be unable to ask the owner?

As busy entrepreneurs, oftentimes scheduling and operations are not written down, instead living in the mind of the owners themselves. These things may provide issues for the company in times of emergency. It is important to have the procedures including relevant passwords, to be able to step in on behalf of the person that is missing.

At NOBL, we see all types of succession planning with small businesses. The goal of successful planning is to ensure all parties are in sync with the implementation. Within families, there may be some crossover with family members that complicates the process. If there are several children, how does the business get handed down equitably? How does each sibling feel about being part of the business? What is its true valuation? Will you be able to keep long term employees should the original owner retire? These questions and more are some of the challenges that have been able to be navigated by NOBL’s business analysts. These issues are similar if the business is sold to an employee or third party. CBDCs know small business, and the opportunities for change and growth in the communities we serve. Let us help.