The Annual Planning Meeting
Readers of this newsletter understand that Exit Planning is an on-going process. It begins with establishing your objectives and a valuation of your company and ends with your successful exit. Along the way, you and your Team of Advisors look at preserving the value of your company, protecting that value from creditors and increasing overall value. Also important is making contingency plans for your business should something happen to you before your planned exit and finally, coordinating your business plan with your estate plan for your family.
This is a lot to consider—and to do. How then, do you avoid putting this off until "later" or just letting it fall through the cracks?
The Annual Planning Meeting is an elegant solution that gives structure to the entire Exit Planning process. Depending on where you are in the process, you may meet with your advisors more often, but all owners actively pursuing a successful exit should meet with their advisors at least annually.
If you have engaged Clayton Capital Partners to quarterback your Advisory Team, you should be familiar with the Annual Planning Meeting. If not, please read on to learn how this single meeting can keep all of your advisors working toward your exit objectives.
Each year, Clayton Capital Partners will contact you to set up a time when you and all of your advisors (usually an attorney, insurance/financial professional and CPA) can meet to discuss a number of items. Some owners hesitate to bring this group together expecting that the cumulative hourly fees make the meeting cost-prohibitive. Sensitive to this reluctance, many (if not most) advisors, reduce their hourly rates for this meeting. They understand that the Annual Meeting is their chance to shore up their relationships with you and with the other members of your Advisory Team. Further, they know that their attendance at this meeting is key not only to your ultimate to success but also to the ultimate success of their relationship with you.
Every person at the Annual Planning Meeting is provided with an Agenda. You should receive your Agenda several weeks before the meeting so you can frame your thoughts and questions for your Advisory Team.
Typically, the Annual Planning Agenda includes:
As you can see, this meeting is owner-driven. Every Agenda item is designed to enable you to meet your ultimate goal of leaving your business in style. To make that exit possible, each member of your Team of Advisors will leave this meeting with their marching orders for the rest of the year. Because they are all present, they benefit from each other's expertise and can efficiently execute their parts of your Exit Plan.
If you are not already holding Annual Meetings, give us a call. We can create a detailed Agenda specific to your needs and concerns, as well as answer any questions you may have.
Subsequent issues of The Exit Planning Navigator® discuss all aspects of Exit Planning.