In the world of sales, there are often no right answers. What would you do in this tough sales situation? Make the call below, and see instantly how your judgment compares. Final results will appear in LBM Journal. Be sure to check back next month for a fresh Tough Call.
Tough Call - Next Exit: Opportunityville?As much as you enjoy and appreciate working for your current employer, something your father said years ago still echoes in your mind. Now that you’re in your mid-40s, that conversation has been echoing louder and louder. You’ll never forget the day: it was a sunny Saturday afternoon, late in the summer. You were helping your dad put up some new displays in his hardware store, when he said, “You know, son, the best way to get ahead in this world is by working for yourself.” While it’s true that the store your father owned never made your family rich, you grew up in a nice home, and your dad never seemed to have the same frustrations as your friends’ dads—who went to work in an office and collected a paycheck.
Owning a company is a big step, and it’s not for everyone. And until recently, you hadn’t given it much thought. You’ve always been content to go to work for someone else, and to be a part of someone else’s team. What changed is an opportunity that recently presented itself, via news of a small lumberyard in a neighboring town preparing to close its doors.
As an active member of your local building industry, you’re on a first-name basis with Danny, the owner of the lumberyard.Danny has owned and operated yards in small, nearby markets for years.The combination of the housing slowdown and Danny’s desire to slow down a bit led him to the decision to close his store in the appropriately named, nearby hamlet of Opportunityville.
When Danny mentioned his plans to close the store, your wheels started spinning.
“What if I took over the store?” you asked. Danny’s immediate response was very positive. Plus, it helps that Danny is a nice guy, and you two get along well.Since he was closing the store anyway, he surely wouldn’t want much money for it— beyond the inventory and real-estate.
You immediately started doing your homework, learning the size of the trading Area, competitive situation, local demographics and more. From everything you learned, taking over this business wouldn’t be a walk in the park, but it had all the markings for potential growth and success.
You discussed the idea with friends and family…and the more you thought about it, the more excited you became. After decades of working for others, it looked like it was finally time.
Once you expressed interest in owning it, however, Danny changed his mind.After all, if you want it so badly, then it must be worth something. Instead of shuttering it, Danny announced that he’s decided to keep it open. If you want to buy it, you can—but at a premium. Your CPA is balking at his selling price. But after crunching the numbers, you’ve managed to justify what he’s asking.
Now, after agreeing in principle on his price and reasonable terms, he’s hemming And hawing—and seems unsure whether or not he wants to sell. You thought you had a deal, but he keeps changing things, and refuses to be tied down. Meanwhile, you’ve mentally made the transition from working for someone else to working for yourself. As much as you want this deal to happen, dealing with Danny is testing your patience. What would you do?
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|Roll the dice.||10%|
|Test the waters.||37.5%|
|Yes, this time.||32.5%|