The majority of practice sales are confidential and the staff is not informed until there is a signed purchase agreement and loan approval is completed. Many owners fear that, if the word gets out they are selling, there will be a mad dash for the door of both staff and clients. In reality, this is rarely the case. For practice sales in which the staff is informed early in the process, the transaction and transition usually goes much smoother.
Employees are often much more perceptive than owners think, and despite the best efforts to keep the decision to sell quiet, the rumor mill starts flowing. This can often be more disruptive to a practice than the thought of a sale. If the staff is informed early and asked to participate, it goes a long way to quiet their fears. Not including staff also gives them the message that they are irrelevant, unimportant, and not respected. If the selling DVM asks for their help in the preparation to sell the practice and assures them that their importance to the clinic is tied directly to its value, it is much more likely that they will work hard, as a team to help with the sale.
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