When selling an HVAC business, the price is often the central focus. With the right HVAC broker, you’ll be able to receive a fair valuation and navigate through the technical challenges of the selling process. However, many sellers don’t anticipate the emotional price they’ll pay. Selling a business can be a whirlwind of emotions, and we’ve seen it firsthand.

The emotional aspect can be less manageable than the technical one if unprepared to endure it. Whether planning on a short-term sale strategy or a long-term exit, it’s normal to feel the highs of reaching goals and fulfilling dreams while also experiencing the lows of unfulfilled expectations and anxiety-inducing uncertainty.

Even entrepreneurs who deal with the selling process frequently find it challenging to face the highs and lows of the process. It’s understandable that first-time sellers especially struggle with it.

Making the Decision to Sell

There are many reasons why an HVAC business owner may decide to sell their company. It may be a planned exit or due to personal circumstances or life changes, such as retirement, health issues, family changes, stress, or a desire for a career change. No matter the reason, the decision symbolizes a significant milestone. The decision to sell ignites a shift in your role and outlook. Your role may slowly shift from growing the business to finding a buyer, navigating the sale, and planning life post-sale.

Many embark on this journey with hope and excitement, entangled with anxiety, rage, resignation, or even desperation. If unmanaged, these emotions may hinder decision-making and derail the process altogether.

As a successful business owner, you pour your heart into your business and invest a lot of energy into developing your unique business. Building a company that represents the proper values and reflects an accurate identity takes time and dedication. For these reasons, it’s natural and expected for inner conflicts to arise about relinquishing ownership. Unfortunately, this inner conflict can be highly distracting, causing business owners to procrastinate or make rash decisions.

Be Resilient During Sale Negotiations

Initial negotiations are straightforward when you finally find the right buyer. Suppose an HVAC business broker helps to sell the company. In that case, they’ll likely explain industry standards to you as their client and use a sector-specific EBITA multiple, adjusted to meet particular factors such as customer churn rate and predicted growth. This beginning stage can be challenging for those looking to sell. This company is your baby, and like any parent going into protection mode for their kids, you might have some strong emotions that can override professionalism. You might even throw your good business sense and logic out the window in the face of a supposed threat.

Some potential sellers find this stage exciting. It makes the whole process seem real. For others, their feelings of overwhelm and fear during negotiations overpower any bit of excitement that may be lurking beneath the surface.

Foster Positivity, Empathy, and Patience

Dealing with different personalities, differing opinions, and conflict is normal in negotiations. How you handle it propels it smoothly or pushes it toward a long, bumpy road. The keys to the smooth road are positivity, empathy, and patience.

A positive outlook doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t face conflict, but it will ensure you don’t create unnecessary conflict. Empathy allows you, as the seller, to understand the buyer and to see things through their lens. Committing to patience will decrease the chance of rash decisions and rage. Making a conscious decision to foster positivity, empathy, and patience helps you to understand the perspective of others and avoid getting caught up in your emotions.

Don’t Make Big Purchases Prematurely

Don’t buy your plane ticket to Europe before the sale is complete. While rare, sales can dissolve. Buyers can back out. Business sales sometimes fall through at the last minute. Don’t be premature with your post-sale plans. That will only heighten the stress, flare up the emotions, and add extra pressure to your plate. Prepare yourself for different scenarios, including how you’ll respond to them mentally.

Letting Go When It’s a Done Deal

Letting go is hard. Most business owners have their company embedded in their heart. No matter how lucrative the sale was, there is often a bereavement stage, followed by an identity crisis. “Who am I outside of my business?”

You are not alone in your feelings, and you are allowed to feel them. Perhaps you feel like you’ve kept it together so well, and now you’re about the “break” since everything is over. Let yourself feel your feelings, and then start doing everything you’ve planned for so long. You have freedom that you didn’t have before. You have funds that you didn’t have before. You have time that you didn’t have before. Buy the RV. Go Backpacking across Europe. Play all the golf you want. Go to sporting events. There may be a part of you that feels empty and uncertain. The best cure is to fill the voids with some of your dreams.