Early Exit Planning for Finance Directors – Addressing Concerns and Maximizing Benefits Introduction:

The role of a Finance Director (FD) extends beyond numbers; it encompasses steering the financial course of the business. Early exit planning might stir a mix of concerns and opportunities.

In this blog, we’ll explore the dual nature of early exit planning from the perspective of a Finance Director – addressing concerns and maximising benefits for both the role and the business owner.

Strengthening Long-Term Business Viability

Concern: A Finance Director might hesitate to suggest early exit planning, fearing it could signal a premature departure from the business.

Opportunity: Contrary to this concern, early exit planning safeguards the business’s long-term viability. By initiating these conversations, the FD positions themselves as a strategic partner dedicated to ensuring the business’s prosperity, no matter the timeline. This proactive approach showcases the commitment to sustainable growth.

Balancing Financial Priorities

Concern: The complex financial considerations of exit planning might seem daunting, potentially diverting your focus from ongoing financial management.

Opportunity: Early exit planning doesn’t divert focus; it aligns priorities. Incorporating this into the financial strategy offers a more comprehensive outlook. This approach strengthens financial resilience by accounting for potential changes, ensuring the business remains adaptable and thriving.

Managing Emotional Dynamics

Concern: Addressing the topic of exit planning might lead to emotional complexities among stakeholders.

Opportunity: The role of FD extends to managing financial emotions. By facilitating these discussions, the role showcase the ability to navigate sensitivities. This fosters trust and underscores the dedication to ensuring a smooth transition while preserving financial well-being.

Embracing Evolving Business Landscape

Concern: The business landscape is dynamic; planning for an exit might seem premature.

Opportunity: In fact, early exit planning embraces change. It positions the business for agility in the face of evolving scenarios. As a Finance Director, the ability to adapt financial strategies amplifies the role as a forward-thinking leader, equipped to guide through uncertainties.

Demonstrating Immediate Value

Concern: Business owners might question the immediate value of early exit planning.

Opportunity: Highlighting tangible benefits – tax optimisation, risk mitigation, and strategic clarity – emphasizes the financial advantages. This showcases prowess in aligning financial strategies with overarching business goals, reaffirming the role as a pivotal decision-maker.


 Navigating early exit planning as a Finance Director involves addressing legitimate concerns while capitalising on significant opportunities. By engaging with these complexities, you amplify your strategic impact.

Early exit planning becomes a tool to fortify the business’s financial foundation, solidify its long-term viability, and enhance its position as a key driver of financial success.  Whilst also helping to maximise value on exit and put the business in the best possible position for a future change of ownership.

If you are a finance director, please contact us to explore how you can navigate concerns and seize opportunities. By aligning your expertise with this strategic approach, you can position yourself as a visionary Finance Director, steering the business towards enduring financial triumphs.


  • Mark Phillips

    Mark is ACA, a qualified chartered accountant and corporate finance advisor with over 15 years of experience advising businesses on buy-side and sell-side transactional projects.