"Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat" is a quote from the Art of War by Sun Tzu a 6th Century BC Chinese general and military strategist. The Art of War, his book on military strategy, has become fashionable as a source of business wisdom, or at any rate quotes.
A recent US Survey found that 78 percent of small-business-owner clients plan to sell their businesses to fund their retirement. The proceeds are needed to fund 60 percent to 100 percent of their retirement needs. Yet, less than 30 percent of clients actually have a written succession plan.
We recently worked with a large and successful business which had become so by being very very good at what they did. Clients recommended them, bigger and better projects came along and the business grew. But there was no overall plan for the end game. The board found it difficult to agree where they wanted to take the business, as a result of which they looked down at their feet to see what the next step or two might be for the business rather than lifting their heads to the horizon and developing a plan for growth and ultimately exit or succession.
It’s an oft repeated tale simply because day to day business is absorbing enough without planning for ones mid or long term future. Yet without a plan, or an aiming point to paraphrase the Art of War quote each individual small step for the business might not be taking you where you want to go longer term.
If this resonates for you and your business, or clients of yours, you could benefit from attending our upcoming Business Exit Strategies Seminars in Cambridge (8 June 2017 - yes I know that's general election day, Teresa didn't consult with us!) and Norwich (22 June 2017). Places are limited so I’d encourage you to book now at our events page http://www.pem.co.uk/corporate-finance/pem-events