Most owners of closely held businesses invest decades of sweat, risk, and sacrifice into their businesses. Business success may already have brought you a personal sense of achievement and significant financial rewards. However, what happens when you exit your business, and you reach your end zone, likely defines your career too.

Your exit should be the crowning achievement of a career, the fulfillment of financial and family dreams, the next chapter in a business legacy. It is a cause for celebrating—for dancing in the end zone.

If your exit strategy is to pass your business to family members, we call that the “Passer’s Strategy.”

A Passer’s defining motivation is to smoothly transfer the business to a successor family member or members. As long as personal financial security and freedom are achieved, most Passers are not concerned about getting “maximum value” for the business. You act from the heart rather than the wallet.

Contrary to selling the business to an outside or an inside buyer, Passers encounter different sets of challenges and inherent strengths that they must face. They must find answers to questions such as, “How do I guarantee my kids don’t blow it?” and “how can I be fair to children not actively working in the family business?” Woven into these questions and issues are family dynamics, relationships, and realities.

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