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Category Archives: Business Management

Painting Your Lawyer into a Corner

September 29, 2017

This happens more often than people would like to admit and it’s very unfortunate. One of the best things about hiring a lawyer to work with you on a transaction is tapping into their experience and training and expertise. Quite simply, a good lawyer, particularly a transactional business lawyer, will know how a transaction is supposed to progress. They’ll know what some of the standard terms are, and they’ll know what the key negotiation points are.

Of course, we know lawyers are expensive, at least in nominal dollars.… Read the rest

Tracking and Improving Your Contracts as Your Company Grows

September 28, 2017

If your company is growing, you probably are entering into a lot of contracts. You will have contracts with vendors and contracts with your customers. How are you keeping your contracts straight? If you subscribe to the theory of constant evolution, things will change in your contracts. You will improve your forms. You will learn, and get better and better, as your business grows. If a customer is upset because something is unclear in an early contract, you can change the terms of your contract. … Read the rest

Should your Partnership Discussion be Going Forward? A Quick Two-Part Test.

September 27, 2017

How do you know if you should be engaging in a partnership? How do you determine if what you are doing makes sense?  Discussions about partnerships can take a lot of time, and a partnership agreement means a large commitment of time, money, and energy. Indeed, it can even be a dangerous economic enterprise. What tells you whether you should be in or out?

Here is a quick, two-part test you can use to analyze whether your partnership discussions even make sense to go forward.Read the rest

Below the Surface of Partnerships

September 26, 2017

I was recently given the interesting analogy that partnerships are like icebergs. You can see what is above, but what really matters is below the surface, because in an iceberg, there is a lot more ice below than above. In a partnership, there is a lot more below the surface than above the surface.

There is much to think about in partnerships. We have discussed planning for the things that are likely to happen in partnerships:  the four D’s, death, disability, divorce, disagreement, and we make sure we have plans in place to protect ourselves in these various situations.… Read the rest

Leaving Your Business to Charity

September 25, 2017

The world has changed. Twenty-five, thirty years ago, many company owners said they wanted to leave their businesses to their children. The choice was clear. Parents would die, business would move to the children. Many children generationally were very happy to assume the business. The world has changed. We have a very, very diverse workforce and we have very diverse family structures. A lot of times children don’t want the business or may have built their own wealth, and some people don’t have children or other heirs.… Read the rest

Employment Manual

September 22, 2017

One of the questions we get frequently is, “Should we have an employment manual? Should we have terms of employment that we abide by?” My general recommendation is yes. However, it needs to be a living, breathing document in your organization. It is pointless to have an employment manual that you do not utilize. The employment manual will generally set forth how employment goes and talk about a lot of different issues. Typically, it will give the employer the ability to set the terms of work, how the employees will appear, what activities they will be involved in, how they’ll take vacation time, and how they’ll interact in the workplace.… Read the rest

Job Offer Letter

September 21, 2017

So you’re thinking about hiring a new employee? Should you be using a job offer letter, or what communication should you have with them? I believe it’s a best practice to indeed use a job offer letter to the employee. In that letter, you should be explaining to them what you’re hiring, what they’re going to be doing, what the terms of compensation are, and then typically, you’re also going to include a statement stating that the employment is at will and it may be terminated.… Read the rest

Operational Control Versus Ownership Control

September 20, 2017

A lot of times when clients approach us and they’re structuring their business, they’re very concerned about 50-50, who owns 51% of the business, who owns 50% of the business, and who falls below 49% of the business? In very simple terms, these are somewhat important because generally if you don’t do any planning, the person who owns 51% of the business will often have control of the business. Somebody who owns less than 50% of the business will not have control and that makes a big difference.… Read the rest

All postings are intended to be planning tools to familiarize readers with some of the high-level issues discussed therein. No posting is intended to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your transaction planners including attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity.