As a business seller, one of the most important things you can do is to decide how and when to communicate your sale to "important others", i.e., to various kind of stakeholders associated with your company.
A clear communication is essential because the last thing you want is for information to leak out in an uncontrolled and damaging fashion. It’s advisable to involve your business's key employees when developing a professional plan of communication. Also perhaps your business sale team which may involve external advisers such as business brokers, lawyers, and financial advisers. Ensure clearly assigned responsibilities and timescales including milestones, ideally with defined plan stages.
Related: How to Communicate Your Decision to Important Others
View all templates and checklists required for the sale of a business.
Communication Plan Template
Objectives – what you want people in each stakeholder group to think, and do, after the communication is received and understood
Key Messages – be clear what these messages are, and how they need adaptation for each stage of the sale process – taking into account the psychological factors highlighted in Section 2 above
Targets – the different stakeholders (as in section 1 above), and how the message requires adjusting for relevance to each audience
Methods – the specific methods most suited to each audience and situation, and the most conducive environment – individual one-to-one meetings, group briefings, PowerPoint presentations, website news and blogs, social media, press releases, email shots, formal letters, telephone, and so forth
Responsibilities – who will do which tasks
Timing – including "achieve by" dates, milestones, perhaps within identified stages of the plan
Budget – for expected costs, for example taking staff on an off-site briefing, or planning wider involvement in transition planning sessions
Measuring success – diarize regular review meetings to ensure that everything remains on track, taking corrective action where necessary