COVID-19-Weary Business Owners Can Win by Adopting the Right Mindset for a Sale

Faced with the demand to invest in upgrades needed to sell electric cars, a group of Cadillac dealers recently decided the economic uncertainty outweighed the likely future benefits. About 150 of GM’s 880 U.S. Cadillac dealerships instead took the company’s offer of a buyout of their franchises for the luxury brand.

It’s a decision that many small-business owners can relate to right now.

After a decade of relatively good times, the past year has been a rough financial and emotional ride for owners of thousands of privately owned businesses across a whole range of industries. Roughly one in five small businesses had closed as of last October, and many more are limping along with revenues at a fraction of their pre-pandemic levels.

Why a Sale May Make Sense Right About Now

Many owners have been in survival mode for a year now, taking as much support as possible from government aid programs while scrambling to adapt their staffing and business model to the pandemic world. But as the smoke clears and the longer-term outlook becomes clearer, the option of selling the business and moving on is likely to be the most attractive and viable option for many owners.

That decision may partly stem from life-stage or health reasons. One in three U.S. small-business owners are over 65, and may understandably feel like they don’t have the time or energy to put into the post-COVID-19 recovery.

Some, like those Cadillac dealers, may be unwilling or ill-equipped to adapt to the wave of technological advances and shifting consumer behavior that have been accelerated by the pandemic and which are transforming industries across the board.

Anyone in the movie theater business should be worried not only about the plunge in revenues due to pandemic restrictions but about a more permanent shift by movie studios and consumers to online video platforms. Small brick-and-mortar retailers face an even bigger struggle to survive as the Amazon juggernaut has picked up pace during the pandemic.

While some small businesses will be able to ride out the crisis by adapting to these trends, many others run the risk of turning into zombie companies and facing bankruptcy. Unlike big public companies, their reliance on small groups of investors and bank lending usually doesn’t give them the luxury of capital to reinvent themselves.

Personal Hurdles Can Stand in the Way

A sale often makes the most sense, yet owners commonly struggle to adopt the right mindset to make that decision and follow through with it in a way that maximizes the return. Owners often have a lot of emotion and family identity tied up their business, making it hard to let go. If the business has been in a family for generations, it can be tough for an owner to accept the loss of control on his watch.

Emotion also tends to be a major obstacle when it comes to pricing a sale. Owners will often find it hard to accept a price that they don’t feel takes into account how well revenues were doing a year or two ago or how much family sweat equity has gone into the business over the years.

When this happens, it’s important for owners to take off their family hat and be as dispassionate as possible. The reality is that they can either sell at a time when they have some leverage or risk getting to the point where the terms are being imposed on them in the face of bankruptcy.

A Couple of Points in Sellers’ Favor

Rather than seeing the glass as half empty, there are grounds for seeing it as half full. The good news is that this isn’t 2008. There is plenty of capital out there looking for deals, which can put owners in a strong position if they approach the sale with the right mindset.

Consumer demand remains strong in many areas, and private equity firms are sitting on “a ton of dry powder” worth of capital they are keen to deploy in 2021. PE buyers are generally looking for businesses that they can scale up, make accretive relative to EBITDA and penetrate new markets.

To Get the Best Price, What Sellers Should Think About

Owners have options to appeal to what PE buyers want and walk away with the best deal possible.

  • One way of doing that is to clean house before looking for a sale, picking the low-hanging fruit that will create some of the efficiencies that a buyer would implement anyway. That might involve replacing underperforming staff or closing unprofitable locations.  The subsequent improvement in profitability can be annualized and result in a higher multiple for the sale.
  • Or an owner could command a higher price by committing to help implement the buyer’s goals post-sale, perhaps by leveraging his or her extensive customer contacts or following through on a plan for costs cuts.

By putting themselves in the buyer’s shoes like this and letting go of their emotional baggage, owners can better leverage the value of their business and make the best of what may be a difficult situation.

Partner, Plante Moran

As the leader of the restructuring practice at Plante Moran, Tim Weed helps clients navigate changes in their businesses to improve operations and return to profitability. With expertise in cash flow projections, financial restructuring, profit improvement services, and more, clients look to him for guidance when facing difficult choices.

Source: kiplinger.com

659: The Rise of Renter Nation: How to Succeed as Homeownership Declines with Vinney Chopra

Homeownership is falling fast, but that doesn’t mean that your real estate profits have to. Today’s guest, Vinney Chopra, believes that the decline in homeownership is creating opportunities for real estate agents, not taking them away. Listen and learn strategies for leveraging the popularity of rental properties for steady streams of passive income. If you’re interested in investing in multifamily properties, you won’t want to miss this podcast!

Get Instant Access to Hundreds of Free Real Estate Tools

Visit hibandigital.com/toolbox

Claim Real Estate Discounts, Free Trials, and More

Visit hibandigital.com/resources

Sponsors

Rebus UniversityGet Over $10,000 in Real Estate Training for as Little as $97

Visit futureofrealestatetraining.com

PadHawkFind Your Market’s Best Leads for FREE with a 7-Day Trial

Visit padhawk.com

Roddy’s FLSDiscover Unbeatable Real Estate Deals with a FREE Foreclosure List

Visit 4closure.info

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Source:

I Feel Stupid Wanting To Start a Business at My Age (Hour 2)

Debt, Business, Retirement, Savings, Relationships

As heard on this episode:

  • Christian Healthcare Ministries: https://bit.ly/2XBZfE3 

Sign Up for a FREE trial of Ramsey+ TODAY: https://bit.ly/31ricKt 

Tools to get you started: 

  • Debt Calculator: https://bit.ly/2QIoSPV
  • Insurance Coverage Checkup: https://bit.ly/2BrqEuo
  • Complete Guide to Budgeting: https://bit.ly/2QEyonc

Check out more Ramsey Network podcasts: https://bit.ly/2JgzaQR

Source: daveramsey.ramsey.libsynpro.com

926: From Living Off Savings to Millions in Annual Sales: Adedoyin & Amanda Adedapo

Down to their last bit of savings, Adedoyin and Amanda Adedapo almost had to give up on real estate. But instead of doing that, they gave it their all. Now, this real estate power couple is selling over $18 million in volume annually. On today’s podcast, Adedoyin and Amanda share the struggles they faced with their first few deals and the moves that made their business a major success. Listen in for a healthy dose of inspiration and several strategies you can implement to scale your real estate sales.

Listen to today’s show and learn:

  • Adedoyin & Amanda’s sales figures for 2019 [4:22]
  • Advice on targeting first responders [8:58]
  • Partnering with Disney as a Realtor [12:09]
  • How squatters almost ruined Adedoyin’s first deal [20:16]
  • Amanda’s first real estate client: her mom [36:02]
  • Advice on taking action [41:24]
  • Lessons learned through quarantine [46:51]
  • Advice on running a real estate business with your spouse [51:33]
  • How to break through your goals.
  • Plus so much more.

Adedoyin and Amanda Adedapo

The DAPO Group of Keller Williams Preferred Properties is the husband – wife team of Adedoyin (AD) and Amanda Adedapo, licensed real estate professionals in the DC, MD, and VA metropolitan areas. They leverage their expertise in digital marketing, photography, design and community marketing to effectively market properties across the region.

AD and Amanda work to provide home ownership opportunities that help sustain the vitality of their communities. Skill, tenacity, and collaboration are what drive the DAPO Group. The professional balance and cohesion AD and Amanda possess both in business and life are instantly visible, complementing one another to provide exceptional service.

Related Links and Resources:

Thanks for Rocking Out

Thank you for tuning in to Pat Hiban Interviews Real Estate Rockstars, we appreciate you! To get more Rockstar content sent directly to your device as it becomes available, subscribe on iTunes or Stitcher! Reviews on iTunes are extremely helpful and appreciated! We read each and every one of them, please feel free to leave your email so that we can personally reach out and say thanks! Have any questions? Tweet me, Facebook me and ask Pat anything. Don’t forget to head on over to Bare Naked Agent for Pat’s answers, and advice. Thank you Rockstar Nation, and keep rockin!

Source: hibandigital.com

How Do I Get Over My Fear of Being Used Financially? (Hour 2)

Debt, Relationships, Career, Investing, Savings, Business

As heard on this episode:

  • Zip Recruiter: https://bit.ly/2JenOB7 

Sign Up for a FREE trial of Ramsey+ TODAY: https://bit.ly/31ricKt 

Tools to get you started: 

  • Debt Calculator: https://bit.ly/2QIoSPV
  • Insurance Coverage Checkup: https://bit.ly/2BrqEuo
  • Complete Guide to Budgeting: https://bit.ly/2QEyonc

Check out more Ramsey Network podcasts: https://bit.ly/2JgzaQR

Source: daveramsey.ramsey.libsynpro.com

How to Create or Claim Your Small-Business Listing on Manta

Manta.com is one of the most popular local business information websites in the United States. According to its own data, Manta draws about 11 million unique visitors per month and boasts more than 5 million small, mostly local businesses in its database — a significant fraction of all U.S.-based small businesses with physical storefronts.

Does this site’s popularity mean you, a small-business owner eager to reach more potential customers in your hometown (and perhaps beyond) should invest the time and effort necessary to create, optimize, and maintain a Manta listing?

Perhaps. It depends on what type of business you operate, how much effort you can devote to your listing, and whether business directory websites like Manta truly complement your marketing efforts — or whether you’d do just fine without them.

Pros & Cons of Creating a Listing on Manta.com

Does it make sense to create a small-business listing on Manta.com? This is the first question you need to ask before putting in the effort to create your Manta listing.

The truth is, Manta works better for certain types of businesses. Its most popular searches relate to customer-facing service businesses, such as retailers, restaurants, bars, entertainment venues, and others:

  • Automotive businesses
  • Hotels and travel services
  • Beauty shops and spas
  • Cleaning services
  • Plumbing, electrical, and other trade services
  • General contracting services
  • Health and medical

Like many other business information directory sites, Manta sorts listed companies geographically, down to the municipality or neighborhood level. This is vital for location-bound businesses, such as restaurants and brick-and-mortar retailers, that cater mostly or exclusively to local customers.

Manta is less useful, although not entirely useless, for companies that don’t rely on physical locations or local marketing to drive sales. E-commerce businesses that sell through platforms like Shopify or Etsy and rely more on word of mouth and social media marketing aren’t guaranteed to find Manta and its ilk valuable.

Pros of Listing Your Business on Manta

Why create a business profile on Manta? Advantages include the inherent legitimacy of a claimed business listing, SEO benefits, and the importance of sites like Manta in customers’ research process.

1. Claiming Your Listing Makes Your Business Seem More Legitimate

Manta’s “Claim This Listing” button makes clear which of its listings are “claimed” — acknowledged and maintained by the featured business — and which are not.

The simple act of claiming your business, therefore, confers substantial legitimacy upon it, if only because doing so shows Manta-using consumers that you care enough about your establishment to take two minutes to make its listing your own. Rightly or wrongly, consumers might take an unclaimed listing as a sign you aren’t really interested in attracting new customers.

I’m guilty of this myself. All else being equal, I try to avoid businesses with unclaimed online directory listings unless I know of them by other means — such as word of mouth — or they’re part of a recognizable business franchise that I trust.

2. Manta Listings Are Good for SEO

Popular search engines’ ranking algorithms have a “black box” quality to them — no one knows exactly how they work except the people responsible for them — and maybe not even they do. Still, conduct 10 Google searches for 10 of your favorite local businesses and you’re liable to deduce that business directory sites like Manta rank well in organic search results — the list of results you see below the paid search ads on search engines like Google or Bing.

Moreover, Manta’s featured product or service pages often rank separately from the main directory pages. This means that your Manta listing could end up being responsible for several discrete search results, depending on how many featured products or service pages it appears on.

The bottom line is this: Unless your business’s name is easily confused with common or generic terms (“Quality Plumbing,” “Fast Oil Change,” “Tasty Sandwiches”), your Manta listing is likely to appear on Google’s or Bing’s first results page of a search engine. This is crucial because many consumers never venture past the first results page.

3. Consumers Rely Heavily on Directory Listings for Research

If you thought a PCMag study that found roughly 40% of online reviews to be fake would deter shoppers from relying on them, you’d be wrong. According to a 2017 ReportLinker survey, 60% of consumers give online reviews as much weight as recommendations from real-world acquaintances.

Setting aside the question of whether this is a wise policy for consumers to abide by, it’s a compelling case for taking the time to maintain listings on business directory sites with user-generated reviews, such as Manta.

Cons of Listing Your Business on Manta

Manta is a useful part of many a business’s online presences, but it’s not appropriate for every enterprise. Drawbacks include the time and resources involved in maintaining a profile and the fact that listings display potentially sensitive information — which may, in turn, invite abuse.

1. Maintaining Your Profile Takes Time and Effort

Although the initial step of claiming your Manta listing takes just a few minutes, keeping your listing optimized and up-to-date requires real ongoing work. Uploading photos, analyzing user data, responding to reviews, changing listing information that’s no longer relevant — all these activities take time and effort.

If you have an online store, other business directory listings, and multiple social media accounts, staying on top of your digital presence could prove overwhelming.

And, if you’re a cash-poor small business without the means to hire a part- or full-time marketing employee or social media manager, or even work with an outside PR or marketing firm, you’ll need to do this work yourself. If you can — otherwise, there’s no shame in waiting until your business has grown a bit to invest in a first-rate directory profile.

2. May Not Be a Great Resource for User Reviews

Although Manta never experienced the sorts of high-profile fake review scandals that bedeviled Yelp in the late 2000s and early 2010s, the platform is certainly mindful of the potential for inauthentic reviews to interfere with and dilute genuine user feedback.

Indeed, Manta and reputable business directory sites like it take measures to combat fraudulent reviews that can at times be overzealous — filtering out real reviews that you might want your customers to see.

Separately but relatedly, many Manta business listings simply don’t have many user-generated reviews, making them less useful for consumer research. Many of my favorite businesses — enterprises I know to be legitimate — have zero Manta reviews, likely through no fault of their own.

If you want to ensure your customers see every review of your business, good or bad, you’re better off investing in a more “social” directory like Facebook or Yelp.

3. Directory Listings Contain Sensitive Information

Certain types of businesses, such as restaurants and brick-and-mortar retailers, have no choice but to reveal their business addresses, phone numbers, and other basic bits of important-if-sensitive information. Customer-facing businesses like these can’t survive in anonymity.

That said, other types of local businesses — including those that make house calls, like home service providers — might prefer to conceal their physical locations, and possibly contact information, from the public. For example, you might not want your clients to know that you work out of a home office or coworking hub rather than an office suite.

To be clear, if an unclaimed listing exists for your business, it may well list your true place of business, be it a residential address, coworking space, or virtual office. You’ll need to claim your listing to remove this information — but once that’s done, you can feel free to let it lapse.

4. Your Listing Could Attract Abuse

There’s a small but real possibility that your listing could become a forum for abusive or hateful reviews or feedback from misguided customers — and, potentially, members of the public with no connection to your business.

Unlike some online retailers, business directory sites like Manta tend not to require would-be reviewers to verify that they’ve patronized a listed business in the past. This makes it easier than it should be for people with a political agenda or personal grievances to single out individual businesses for criticism.

When they occur, such campaigns typically revolve around controversial actions or stances taken by the targeted business’s owners or employees. For example, in early 2015, the owners of an Indiana pizzeria made headlines for publicly announcing that they’d follow their state’s recently passed Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which was widely interpreted to condone discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

The stance prompted a backlash that saw thousands of comments, some of which were obscene and threatening, posted to the restaurant’s website. Citing safety concerns, the shop closed shortly thereafter, according to the Indianapolis Star.

Reasonable people can disagree with the restaurant owners’ politics without condoning threats to their and their employees’ safety. And, even if you have no plans to publicly announce your business’s support for controversial legislation, your digital presence might nevertheless become a venue for customers to air their grievances.

If you’d rather not deal with such backlash, perhaps it’s best to lay low.


How to Claim or Create Your Manta.com Listing

Follow these processes and tips to claim or create your Manta business listing.

Claiming an Existing Business Listing

Manta uses user-submitted and publicly available information to generate business listings, which legitimate owners can claim. Claiming your Manta profile allows you to do the following:

  • Update Your Listing Information. Claiming your listing unlocks the ability to edit your business name, contact information, business hours, brands carried, payment accepted, business categories (such as “doctors’ offices”), and other basic information. You can also add a brief, customized description of what your business does and provide links to your company website or social media pages.
  • Add Logos and Photos. You can upload your business’s logo or another representative photograph to appear at the top of your listing.
  • Highlight Products or Services. Basic Manta profiles allow for three highly detailed product or service pages, which are useful for describing core or high-value offerings to prospective customers. You can add photos, list prices or price ranges, and include a “Purchase Info” button, which prompts visitors to take a specific action like “call for a free quote.”

Manta has a good primer on claiming a legitimate business listing. To finalize your listing claim and any changes you’ve made, you’ll need to create a user account with your email address, Facebook account, or Google account. If you create a listing with an email address, you’ll need to input your full name, email, and a unique username and password.

If desired, you can add a headshot. Your profile doesn’t contain a ton of personal information about you — it’s more about managing your own business listing, recommendations for other businesses, and account privacy.

Once your profile is created, you can find out whether your business is listed by searching Manta’s database for your exact business name and city. If a listing already exists, click the “Verify Now” button next to it to sync it with your personal profile.

Unlike Yelp, Manta doesn’t require verification of ownership, but you can follow a similar process to earn a “Verified” badge, which Manta claims confers legitimacy. With your listing synced to your profile, you can begin editing and improving to your heart’s content.

Creating a New Listing

If your business isn’t yet listed, simply click the “Add Business” button that appears at the top of every Manta page. Doing so leads you to a form to list your company, where you’ll fill out some basic information about your business: exact company name, exact location, and contact details. This unlocks your listing and syncs it with your personal profile.


How to Optimize Your Manta Listing

Use these tips and resources to optimize your Manta listing once it’s claimed or created:

1. Create a Compelling “About Us” Section

A detailed About Us section is great for boosting your page’s visibility on search engine results pages. Use Google Keyword Planner or a similar tool to identify keywords that your business already ranks for, and then sprinkle them into your About Us copy.

Make sure your About Us is comprehensive, but not awash in detail — the goal is to create a high-level look at your business that shows why you’re different from the competition without overwhelming the reader with granularity.

2. Take Full Advantage of the Product and Service Showcases

Manta lets you highlight up to three products, services, or packages on separate pages within your listing, and there’s no reason not to take full advantage. Focus on popular, preferably high-margin products and services that somehow stand out from what the competition offers. Include images, pricing information, and keywords — check Google Keyword Planner.

3. List as Many Contacts and Links as Possible

In addition to your main business phone number and company website link, include as many relevant contact numbers and web property links as necessary to provide one-stop access to your entire business.

If your business has multiple departments — such as a dining room, bakery, and catering service — provide names and direct lines for the manager of each. Likewise, link to each of your social media properties and your online store, if you have one.

4. Solicit and Curate Customer Recommendations

Manta doesn’t make customer feedback a core part of its appeal. Manta frowns upon customer feedback manipulation, so don’t offer special deals to customers who provide glowing recommendations.

However, it does still allow customers to leave what are essentially reviews on companies’ directory listings, so you can certainly ask and encourage customers to leave feedback if they wish.

5. Use Educational and Social Resources

Manta publishes educational articles on how to get the most out of your Manta profile, as well as general tips on running and marketing your business. It also hosts discussion forums that allow you to connect with other Manta users, talk about your experience on the platform, and seek out advice from more experienced users.


Final Word

Manta isn’t the only free business listing site that small-business owners like you should consider using. Dozens of other sites, including some you’ve probably heard of — Yelp, for example — can increase your company’s name recognition and promote its services to more potential customers than you’d reach via more expensive marketing channels.

Not all such sites are created equal, of course. Some are free or nearly so, while others require a one-time fee or monthly subscription. And many are ill-suited to certain types of businesses or have other drawbacks that might give you pause.

Instead of spending time and money chasing after every directory site that might possibly help your business, take some time to research the most popular options and develop a narrower, more manageable list that works within the constraints of your marketing plan and budget.

Along the way, feel free to speak with peers and competitors about their own experiences on these platforms, assuming they’re willing to talk. With so much else on your plate, you certainly don’t need to make an investment that has little chance of paying off.

Source: moneycrashers.com

Should I Cash Out My Day Trading Account To Pay Down Debt? (Hour 2)

Investing, Debt, Retirement, Relationships, Business, Taxes

As heard on this episode:

  • Tuft & Needle: https://bit.ly/2JgMogF 

Sign Up for a FREE trial of Ramsey+ TODAY: https://bit.ly/31ricKt 

Tools to get you started: 

  • Debt Calculator: https://bit.ly/2QIoSPV
  • Insurance Coverage Checkup: https://bit.ly/2BrqEuo
  • Complete Guide to Budgeting: https://bit.ly/2QEyonc

Check out more Ramsey Network podcasts: https://bit.ly/2JgzaQR

Source: daveramsey.ramsey.libsynpro.com

Employee Offboarding Process – 15 Best Practices for a Positive Transition

A lot of employers put more focus on onboarding than offboarding. But creating a positive experience for departing employees can help to increase retention, keep morale high, and make for a smooth and straightforward transition.

As an employer, you may think you have nothing to offer an employee who has chosen to leave your company. You may even feel hurt or resentful. But it’s important that you put those feelings aside and focus on how to offboard your staff member without burning bridges and providing support and direction to all involved.

How to Positively Offboard an Employee

Here are some tips you can use to create an effective employee offboarding strategy as part of your company culture.

1. Consider Your Organization’s Reputation

Some employers are tempted to let personal feelings take over when an employee decides to leave, but turnover is inevitable in almost every company at one point or another.

Employees choose to leave for a variety of reasons, and it’s important that no matter why a team member decides to leave, you keep your personal opinions in check. Do this not only to encourage a positive offboarding experience for your exiting employee and the rest of your team but to build your company’s reputation as well.

Before applying for a job with your company, many potential employees will conduct a quick online search to see what shows up. If a negative Glassdoor review is front and center, and it details a poor offboarding experience, you’re likely to miss out on qualified, high-quality candidates.

Alternately, a former employee who has a large network or who is involved in different professional groups isn’t likely to speak highly of an employer who behaved carelessly during the offboarding process to other industry experts.

2. Meet With Your Exiting Employee

It may seem obvious, but you should meet with your departing employee after they give their notice. A friendly and informative meeting can help to set the tone for the rest of the offboarding process and let your colleague know where they stand.

Cover the following topics so that you’re both on the same page when it comes to offboarding expectations and responsibilities:

  • What you can do to help them
  • What they can do to help you
  • What you expect them to do before they leave
  • Whether they need to develop training material
  • Who will be handling their job duties

Remember to be kind, positive, and friendly during this meeting. The more support and guidance you offer, the more likely the employee is to help with training their replacement and wrapping up any final projects.

You can also use this as an opportunity to ask where they’re going, what their new position will be, and what made them decide to make a move. However, if you suspect that they’re leaving due to dissatisfaction or unhappiness, this is best left for the exit interview.

3. Meet With Your Team

When an employee quits, it affects your entire team. It can cause a lot of uncertainty and negatively impact morale and engagement. But one of the easiest ways to get ahead of any adverse effects is to communicate early and well with your entire team.

After you meet with the employee who is leaving and you’ve made a plan for handing off duties, you should plan for a group meeting with all of your staff members.

If you’d like, let your outgoing employee announce their departure at the beginning of the meeting and then go over any details that will affect the rest of the team, like your transition plan and whether you’ll be hiring a new employee to fill the open position or if you plan to fill the role from within your company.

This is also a good time to make a short, straightforward speech about your ex-employee by thanking them for their contributions and congratulating them on their new professional adventure. A supportive and encouraging message can go a long way, both for departing employees and your current staff.

Give everyone a chance to ask questions so that there’s no confusion surrounding any new roles or responsibilities within your team. Clear communication makes employees feel secure and eases changes in workflow and job duties.

4. Communicate About the Change in Staff

Once an employee leaves, you want to make sure that everyone knows they’re no longer with your company. This includes the rest of your staff as well as any clients, freelancers, partners, or business contacts outside of the company.

Send an email before your employee leaves notifying anyone relevant of their last day and who will be taking over their duties going forward. Make sure that the email is addressed to your entire staff, including department heads and junior employees. As much as possible, you want to ensure that no one is taken by surprise and that they know who to work with in the future.

Once your employee has left, set up email forwarding so that you can catch any important work-related emails that may be sent to their previous email address in error.

5. Keep Morale in Mind

The rest of the team’s morale can be affected when an employee leaves, especially if their coworker has a negative offboarding experience. Poor offboarding tactics — such as refusing to communicate, letting personal feelings get in the way, or failing to plan and organize a smooth transition — give the impression that you only value your team members as employees and not as people.

Alternatively, a positive offboarding plan can keep morale steady and show staff members that you genuinely care about them and that you take your role as a manager or business owner seriously.

Keep a pulse on morale to determine how your staff is being affected by your previous employee’s departure and address specific issues or problems by communicating openly and honestly with your employees.

If morale seems low and you aren’t sure what to do, try adding a few more ideas to your offboarding checklist to help with engagement and motivation.

6. Work With Your Human Resources Department

Your human resources (HR) department is an essential resource for both onboarding and offboarding.

For example, your HR professional can assist with:

  • Ending health benefits, share plans, and other financial paperwork
  • Ensuring a final paycheck is sent out
  • Retrieving company assets, such a security pass, key, credit card, or laptop
  • Removing access to company accounts and software once the employee has left
  • Conducting exit interviews
  • Creating a job description and recruiting for a replacement
  • Reviewing documents like a noncompete contract or nondisclosure agreement

HR can also provide guidance on how to keep communications positive and productive after an employee decides to move on.

7. Ask Your Departing Employee to Help With Recruitment

When an employee leaves, don’t only focus on transferring duties and redirecting workflow. Have your former employee help with finding their replacement. After all, who knows their job better than they do?

When appropriate, ask them to:

  • Write a job description to use in online job ads for new hires
  • Review resumes and cover letters from potential candidates
  • Sit in on interviews
  • Discuss whether any existing team members would be a fit
  • Meet with a recruiter or hiring manager to explain their role and responsibilities

Involving your former employee in the hiring process for their replacement helps you to find better, more suitable candidates who will have an accurate and realistic understanding of the open position.

8. Conduct an Exit Interview

Although exit interviews should always be optional, they’re an important part of any employee offboarding process. They are a great way to encourage honest feedback and learn where you can improve as a manager and as a company.

Think of an exit interview as an opportunity for you to learn about your employee’s entire experience with you — from onboarding and training to reviews, office politics, company culture, and everything in between.

Some exit interviews are conducted by managers and others by HR departments. It depends on how your company is structured. Regardless of the logistics, exit interviews should be reserved for the last day or two before you and your outgoing employee part ways. If done too early, the employee who is leaving may not feel comfortable being completely upfront about suggestions or complaints.

Although your exiting employee may not have anything bad to say, encourage them to share any tips or advice they have related to their position, the company, their team, or their manager. If they do share negative feedback, remember not to take it personally and to remain professional.

9. Offer to Be a Reference

Depending on your company policy about work references, you can offer to be a reference for your departing employee for future jobs. Knowing that they can rely on you to provide an honest, helpful, and professional reference is a great way to ensure that your employee leaves on a good note.

Most companies prefer that candidates use previous managers or employers as references, so by making the offer, you’re letting them know that you care about their professional future. Plus, it saves them from having to ask you, which can be difficult if they’re not sure where they stand after handing in their notice.

10. Get Your Exiting Employee’s Contact Information

Don’t forget to get your outgoing employee’s new contact information, like an email or mailing address in case you need to contact them with questions related to their previous role. For example, you may need to get in touch about their benefits or to ask about a company account or password. Although you can plan for a comprehensive hand-off, some details can get lost during knowledge transfer, so it’s important to know how to reach your previous hire for a quick question.

And, if they leave on good terms, you may also want to use it to send a friendly message or invite them to a workplace social event down the road.

11. Welcome a Return

Boomerang employees are workers who leave a company only to return later. These employees learned that the grass isn’t always greener and came back to work for you because they had a positive experience at your company. These employees can be a boon to you since they already know the ins and outs of your business, your customers, and the role they held at your company.

But you’ll only get boomerang employees if you facilitate and participate in a proper offboarding process and let outgoing employees know that they’re welcome to return in the future.

If you’re open to having ex-employees work for you again down the road, make sure to communicate that during your offboarding process so that they know it’s an option. If you don’t make it clear, they may assume that you’re not open to it.

12. Connect on LinkedIn

LinkedIn is an ideal way to follow your ex-employee’s professional progress and to get in touch about work-related questions, references, or job opportunities. If you aren’t already connected with your departing employee on LinkedIn, send them an invite. You can take things a step further by providing a written recommendation on the platform as well, which can give them a boost during job searches and round out their profile.

And, as a bonus for you, giving recommendations makes you look like a stellar boss to your ex-employee’s connections and network.

13. Plan an Event

Planning an event like a lunch or after-work cocktail can give current employees a chance to say goodbye to co-workers and end the offboarding process on a happy note. Offboarding can be hard for both your former employee and their team members, so offering everyone a chance to have a casual get-together to reminisce and wish each other well can be a welcome change from typical last-day scenarios.

Involve your team in planning the event, and try to choose a venue that your previous employee enjoys. If possible, have the company cover costs for a meal or appetizers to make it even more enjoyable for everyone.

14. Purchase a Gift

A personalized gift from the company is the perfect way to express appreciation and gratitude for your departing employee’s hard work over the years. Some gift ideas for ex-employees include:

  • A briefcase or professional bag
  • Gift cards to their favorite restaurants
  • A donation to a charity or nonprofit they care about
  • Gourmet coffee, tea, or chocolate
  • Personalized office supplies
  • A gift basket
  • A bottle of wine

You can also get a cake, a framed picture of the team, or anything else you think they might like. Talk to their work friends for ideas and choose a gift that’s both appropriate and fits your budget.

15. Send Around a Card

A card is a cost-effective and common way to bid farewell to an employee. Give the whole team a chance to write a personal message and sign their name by sending it around in advance. If you have a good relationship with your departing employee, you may even want to give them a card yourself, expressing how much you have valued them and enjoyed having them on your team.


Final Word

When you offboard employees with morale, engagement, and professionalism in mind, you reap the rewards of being a thoughtful and desirable employer. Your company’s reputation is a powerful tool in attracting and retaining quality hires, and how you treat previous employees can have a significant impact on how you’re viewed by potential candidates.

Keep your offboarding strategy professional, communicative, and positive to facilitate a smooth transition for everyone involved.

Source: moneycrashers.com