If you’re a practice principal you’ll no doubt be familiar with the term ‘exit strategy’. What you may not know is that your plan should be in place at least five years before you actually intend to leave. This gives you time to get all your accounts in order, identify the appropriate exit strategy and identify your personal goals for the future. Not to mention that it will help you secure a smooth exit and gain maximum return on your practice.
If you plan on selling the business as a way of securing monetary funds for retirement, then that time can be used to implement strategies that will help to maximise turnover and profits. Advertising and branding can help with this, as can having a dental practice valuation from a specialist valuations company.
As part of your exit strategy you should also decide whether you want to sell the practice outright or stay on part-time as part of a deferred consideration deal. Admittedly the eventual outcome may be outside of your control, but it’s definitely something to give thought to and plan. Especially if your intention is to depart immediately and settle for a smaller sum, as you may need to start your exit plan even earlier.
Of course, the better the planning, the more likely you are to achieve your personal and business goals. So if your heart is dead set on walking away from the practice and avoiding being tied into a part-time contract for several years after the sale, you’ll need to plan in advance to make that happen. Naturally, it’s best to contact a specialist dental acquisitions and sales agency that can help you to establish the most appropriate exit strategy that matches your objectives.
They will also be able to warn you of potential pitfalls to avoid. For instance, don't make the mistake of taking on fewer patients and reducing working hours too soon. All too often practice principals make this mistake, resulting in stagnation of growth and loss of income. As your profits decrease, so will the practice’s attractiveness to potential buyers and banks.
In regard to your staff, be sure to look at the way in which your associates are remunerated in your exit strategy to create an accurate overview of your practice’s performance and potential. Official associate agreements will be needed as well to protect the goodwill of the practice and assure potential buyers that the clinical team plans to remain with the business for the foreseeable future.
If retirement is on your mind or you’re thinking of moving on, then it may be time to start thinking about an exit strategy. Call Dental Elite for a free valuation, healthcheck and expert advice that will help you to achieve your long-term goals and realise your practice’s potential.