Own a Business? Own Your Exit.

Smart business owners plan their transition from day one…
Whether it’s this year or in ten now is always a good time to prepare your business for your departure. Our region contains a growing number of business owners who are approaching “business exit”, but haven’t yet figured out the strategy t hat best meets their business strategy, financial needs, and personal values. We can help.

Want Help?

  1. Sign up for strictly confidential exit planning consulting: northcoastsbdc.org/join
  2. If you qualify we will also invite you to sign you up for free access to Mavrek.com, a Special Exit Planning Tool for owners selling within 6-18 months.
  3. Have your prospective buyers sign up for consulting, too, so your transition and your legacy transfer go smoothly. *We will assign you two separate business consultants and keep an information firewall between the two engagements.
  4. Watch one or more of the training webinars below.

2020-23 Transition Workshops

Watch the recordings:

Other Useful Resources

2019 Business Succession Program

Building on the success of the August 2018 Business Succession Conference, the 2019 Business Succession Program is an interactive, practical guide through your business exit. Best for owners who want intensive, hands-on help to engineer a sound exit in the next 1-10 years. Whether it’s selling to new owners, employees, or transferring to inheritors, this is your springboard to a smart exit. Questions? Contact Center Director Leila Roberts at leila@northcoastsbdc.org or (707) 445-9720 x212

Program Benefits

  • Create a strong exit plan that meets both your business goals and family needs.
  • Gain confidence that you’re “doing it right” with personalized support from your seasoned SBDC consultant.
  • Access best practices from experts who’d otherwise cost you hundreds or thousands of dollars. 

How to Participate:

  • One-to-one business advising throughout process (sign up to become a client)
  • Workshops
  • Facilitated Peer Coaching Group
  • Speed Consulting with specialists


Sign up for one or all the following workshops to help you through the “tricky” parts of selling or transferring your business.

Important for all business owners:

  • Simple Steps for Exiting Your Business: Feb 8, 2019 – 10 am to 12:30 pm. Group coaching orientation runs from 9 to 10 am and speed consulting slots are open from 1 to 4 pm 
  • Your Last Business Plan–Building Strength Before Selling: Fall TBD

Selling the business:

  • Valuing & Selling Your Business: March 20th & 27th 
  • Managing a Strong Transition When Selling Your Business: June 19th
  • Negotiating, Structuring and Closing the Deal: Fall 2019

Transferring to family members

Converting to employee ownership:

  • Converting Your Business to Employee Ownership–Myths and Realities: Feb 28, 2019 – 5:30 pm. Virtual workshop accessible from your computer or SBDC Conference Room.
  • Selling Your Business to Your Employees: Deeper Dive In person workshop, September 23rd
  • Lenders and B2B Professionals! Help Your Clients Understand Employee Ownership Conversion. In person briefing September 24th
  • Policy makers, economic and community development professionals! Worker Owned Businesses are Growing. Learn Why. In person briefing September 24th

Have a Buyer in Mind?

If you are working with someone (or some people) who would like to buy your business: send them to SBDC. We will also assign your potential buyer a business advisor to help them build a strong business plan, loan application, and more. <b>Important</b> Whenever SBDC is serving both a business seller and buyer we create a strict firewall between the two engagements. Our consultant works for their client’s interests exclusively, and will not 

We also offer workships for business purchasers and people new to business:

Facilitated Group Coaching

Respected Humboldt business transition coach Richard Borough is facilitating a peer support process to run in parallel with the Business Succession workshops. This small, private group will gather in between the workshops to help each other stay on track and discuss sensitive topics in a confidential setting. 

Participation is free thanks to generous sponsorship from The Headwaters Fund.


  • Participants must be SBDC clients. Sign up online here or contact SBDC Director to become a client and request your intake interview: Leila Roberts leila@northcoastsbdc.org or (707) 445-9720 x212
  • ​Business owners only. 
  • Limit of 10 participants in group.
  • Come to the first gathering from 9 to 10 am on Friday, Feb 8th to learn more and meet your peers. The group will decide together how often and when to meet thereafter.

Speed Consulting

SBDC also offers “Speed Consulting” appointments with specialists in finance, legal, management. This is an excellent opportunity to bring a concrete question or challenge into a private, one-to-one session and come away with concerete advice. Reserve a spot before or after a workshop, or ask for a virtual consulting appointment: contact Center Director Leila Roberts leila@northcoastsbdc.org or (707) 445-9720 x212

Speed Consulting Opportunities Include

  • What drives value in your business? Is your business strong enough to sell for a good price? Consult with Mike Balstad, Regional SBDC Business Succession Specialist
  • Is your business right–and ready–for conversion to employee ownership: with Donna Sky or Alison Lingane, Project Equity and SBDC advisors
  • Family business and family financial planning aspects of your business exit: with Mike Balstad, Regional SBDC Business Succession Specialist
  • The family / personal values and goal-setting aspects of your business exit: with Richard Borough, leadership & transition coach and SBDC advisor

Other speed consulting opportunities come up around new workshops: stay tuned!Q


Sponsored by The Headwaters Fund

Primary funding for the Business Succession Conference and Program thanks to The Headwaters Fund of Humboldt County.

Additional Support From: 

And sustaining funding for SBDC from: