Sell your business or Hire a Manager? This is what I did with my very own startup.

Struggling to decide whether to sell your startup or hire a manager? Fortuna shares her experience & insights!

should I sell my business or hire a manager?

Hey there, welcome back to my daily blog! 💕 Thank you for stopping by at this cosy corner of the ‘net, you are very welcome here! 🤗 My name is Fortuna, and I sold my startup, It Really Works Vitamins, in 2022. I love sharing daily blog posts on the lessons I’ve learned along the way and all the new things I’m still picking up. By building, scaling, and selling an online business, you too can achieve financial independence or at least save many years of working a 9-5 job. So, let’s dive into today’s topic!

In this post, we’ll explore:

  1. Deciding whether to sell your startup or find a manager
  2. Considering your feelings towards your startup
  3. Identifying potential Managers within your team
  4. Assessing the cost of hiring a Manager
  5. Learning from my own experience

If you’ve been running your startup for the last 5 to 7 years, you’re probably exhausted and feeling like you’ve taken your company as far as you can. So now, you’re at a crossroads: should you sell your startup or find a new Manager to grow your business? A manager is responsible for overseeing daily operations and making all managerial decisions.

This blog post is going to be particularly relevant if you’ve bootstrapped your startup. I completed the sale of my startup last month and before I made the huge decision to sell, I looked really carefully into the process of finding the right manager, hiring them, and handing over all managerial activities and the day-to-day running of the brand – it’s complex!

💡 Should You Sell Your Startup, or Find a Manager?

Let’s get into it!

I’ve explored this topic as a video on my channel 💖

But I have reflected and expanded on it a little more here on the FireFortuna blog.

🤔 How do you still feel about your startup?

Even if you’re feeling burnt out, depleted, and other responsibilities may have entered the picture, do you still feel that excitement of reaching the next goal, getting a new stockist, or figuring out that marketing channel that causes your sales to skyrocket? If so – you should get a Manager. You’re not ready to walk away. You’re excited about where the brand will be in three to five years, then it’s time to go on a journey to find the perfect Manager.

🔍 Do you have anyone within your team who knows the ropes and could step forward to help scale up your business? Do they already have a track record elsewhere? Or do they possess the hunger, energy, and determination to take your business to the next level?

💰 Let’s look at your profits. How much would it cost to hire a Manager? Are you willing to give away shares in your business?

📊 When hiring a Manager, it’s also essential to think about the specifics of your business.

My startup was an online hair supplement store. I wanted to take some time away from my business, and I was looking for a Manager-lite. I wanted someone who could scale up our marketing in particular. I already had a team of excellent freelancers, and I was happy to stay on for a few hours per week, managing all their outputs and paying all the bills.

When advertising online for supplements, there are numerous hurdles to overcome. Google doesn’t love supplements ads – unless it’s retargeting. And for anyone who’s done Facebook ads – you’ll find it’s one issue after another. Apple updates, Privacy, The Algorithm changing.

I found someone via LinkedIn who had experience scaling up other stores using a combination of Facebook and Google Ads, and she had great experience. So I decided to go with it.

And guess what, it bombed. All the strategies that had worked with other brands she’d worked with just wouldn’t work for us – and I think that’s purely because she hadn’t scaled up a supplement company – so I blame myself.

I don’t want to sound overly pessimistic. If you give yourself a few months to find the right person with a specific track record, you might be more successful.

Financial independence retire early blog

I don’t want to sound overly pessimistic. If you give yourself a few months to find the right person with a specific track record, you might be more successful.

🎯 So now let’s discuss: Selling your startup

I have a video on my experience of selling my startup – so please check it out here:

Gary Vee answered the question, “How do you know if you should sell your startup?” and he said the answer is if you just don’t like it anymore.

Lots of cool things were happening – we’d been working with hundreds of Affiliates for the past few months, and we were now seeing the fruits of their sales coming in. We were also working with a massive YouTuber! With all the good things happening, none of it was making me happy.

I’d reached a stage where I was so burnt out, I couldn’t take it anymore. There are five stages of burnout, and I was at number 5 – the ‘Habitual Burnout phase.’ I wasn’t yet depressed, but I was surely getting there.

Because I’d still been continuously working on scaling up the brand, I was in a great position to sell. I put my startup up on and I’m so happy to have my life back.

I’m taking a little time off, and I’m working on this blog 🌸

That’s it for now, folks! Thanks again for stopping by, and I hope you found this post insightful. Remember, whether you decide to sell your startup or find a new Manager, the most important thing is to stay true to yourself and follow your passion. I’ll see you tomorrow in the next post!

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