When approaching a transaction, focus on what Roger Blackstock, a Vistage Chair in Atlanta, GA, calls the Three P’s: “Your purpose, your people, and your processes are key,” says Roger Blackstock, a Vistage Chair in Atlanta, GA. “If you focus on the three P’s — your purpose, your people, and your processes —  you’ll have a successful organization. Do we have a clear purpose… a vision that is clearly articulated by all?  Do we have the right people in place? If not, look for the right ones and replace the others. Do we have defined processes in place in order to execute properly?”

Adds Kirk Dando of Dando Advisors in Fort Collins, CO, “Hope is not a strategy. You don’t have to have a perfect plan, but you need a strategy with goals. You need a management framework and a cadence to review that framework on a monthly or quarterly basis. Everyone needs to obsess over the strategy, otherwise going through a transition is going to be even more difficult.”

Be sure that you have a team of people who can help with the deal or with dayto-day business needs. “I tell people, you think it’s going to be difficult, but it’ll be 10-100 times more difficult than you anticipate,” says Dando. “That’s an important thing, because during stressful times, sometimes we look the other way on things we shouldn’t. The process can have a way of wearing us down, and we need to stay strong on the long haul.”