Meet Paul Stevens – helping people mentally and emotionally prepare for selling their business

While making sure that your business is ready to sell is incredibly important, it’s also worth paying attention to whether you and your family are mentally and emotionally ready for the change.

Preparing yourself mentally for what’s ahead, whether that’s working underneath someone again for a short period, or even full retirement, is something that you shouldn’t ignore.

That’s where an experienced consultant and facilitator like Paul Stevens comes into their own. Having known one of our directors, Brian, for many years, Paul will be working with us moving forward, helping our clients fully understand what the future holds for them when selling their business.

Helping people access their potential

Paul has been working in consultancy for around 20 years, specialising in helping people understand how they are going to respond to changes. This is especially vital when they are looking to exit their business.

He says: “I have two main aims. One is to make sure that the business is in the best possible place so that it is much more desirable and acquirable. My other aim is to help build better British businesses.

“There is a huge wealth of potential in people that they can’t always access. So, for me, it’s about finding a way to access that huge potential. People are amazing when we put our minds to something. We can all achieve pretty much anything we want to, within reason.

“So, it’s important to create an environment where people can be at their very best – whether that’s aligned goals or motivations.”

“As a profession, we have a responsibility to make a difference”

Paul truly understands the role that coaches and facilitators play in the continuation of British business, stating that the profession as a whole needs to be more outcome orientated.

He says: “As a profession, we have a responsibility to make a difference and come together to help build sustainable British businesses. The UK needs more successful SMEs, so that’s incredibly important to me. Helping a buyer and seller to prepare themselves mentally for the handover and ensuring the business remains profitable and successful after the sale is vital.

“We’ll partner with the client to help them achieve their selling or buying goals. Quite simply, we have to do better for our clients so that they can make better choices for their businesses.”

Mental preparation is so important when selling a business

When selling or buying a business, there are a multitude of questions that a management team must ask themselves. Paul fills that space perfectly, helping clients truly understand different perspectives and whether they are truly ready to take that next step.

He says: “When buying or selling, it’s important to make sure that the management is prepared to change. For instance, is the seller ready to work for someone else? Are they ready for what lies ahead, be that nothing, or a year of working underneath someone else?

“Similarly, buyers need to think about what sort of personality their current business has. For example, will they be able to integrate the new workforce into their current one?

“So, it’s so important that people spend more time thinking about how the process is going to go and whether they are emotionally and mentally ready for it.

“It’s all about emotional awareness. Am I ready? Is my wife, husband, or partner ready? What do I want for my people? What sort of buyer do I want?”

Ensuring the greatest chances of success

With the sales process often being a lengthy and sometimes stressful process, Paul does absolutely everything he can to make sure the business, and the seller, is as desirable and acquirable as possible.

He says: “My role is to greatly increase the chances of both parties getting what they want and need from the sale. At the end of the day, the UK needs more successful SMEs, so that’s very important to me.

“You can ensure the greatest chances of success by putting culture before cash. When selling, there is always the potential to get it wrong but if both the seller and the buyer understand the hurdles when it comes to personalities and cultures, that can make a massive difference.

“It’s so important to help the seller be a desirable and acquirable option, but it’s also vital to help the acquirer become desirable too. Staff at the company that’s being sold will want to know that the new acquirer has a reputation for keeping staff, having contented staff, and a proven desire to integrate effectively.”

“I’m keen to work with The Exit Partnership to help in any way I can”

Paul understands why The Exit Partnership offers something completely different to others in the sector and wants to help our clients understand the mental and emotional challenges that selling a business can bring.

He says: “The Exit Partnership’s directors have sold their own businesses, they know what’s involved, and they know the idiosyncrasies of selling a business.

“They care about getting the best possible outcome for their client, they’re not focused on just making a quick buck. The way that Victoria and Brian work greatly increases the chances of clients getting what they want and need from the sale.

“I want to help them even further and help the sellers, and buyers, understand what is involved emotionally and mentally and make sure the businesses are as desirable and acquirable as possible.”

Get in touch

If you’re looking to sell your business, we’ll provide you with honest and comprehensive support throughout. We’ll help you find the right buyer for your business, give you that peace of mind that you need, and help make the transition as smooth as possible.

Email or call 0113 4656 111. You can also contact Paul at


How to prepare your business to attract Generation Alpha
Have a read


Advisers have changed the way they assess employment opportunities
Have a read


Why a four-day week could be right for your firm
Have a read
Arrow icon

We're your

Say 'elo

We’ve got our thinking caps on and we’re ready to mingle.

    How can we help?