As an owner-operator of a small channel business, it can sometimes be hard to see the forest from the trees. Owners can get so mired in the details of running a business and keeping the lights on that they’re unable to work on those revolutionary product and service ideas that have been kicking around.
While shedding the mantle of ownership responsibilities can be liberating, many former owners can have a difficult time getting used to the fact that they no longer have the last word in the organization.
Being purchased by a larger organization can actually be a great windfall for customers and potential new clients—it often means they’ll benefit from a deeper tech bench and greater technical expertise coming from the back end of the acquirer’s organization.
At the same time, larger organizations tend to be beholden to more IT standards bodies, regulators and accreditation organizations. That means that you’ll need to adhere to stricter policies and be ready for audits.
Many owners choose to be bought because they know that’s the only chance the organization has to grow—it can often be difficult to hire additional sales staff when cash flow concerns enforce limitations.
At the same time, former owners who are put in charge of sales or running a new branch of a larger organization will not be able to cut deals on the spot with customers or forge new vendor relationships without passing everything through the "mothership."
Weekends, vacations, quiet evenings with the family. Sounds heavenly, doesn’t it? A buy out can add a lot of stability to a former entrepreneur’s life.
At the same time, you’ll no longer have the "boss’ prerogative" to take off early on a Friday afternoon or run errands in the middle of the day.