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Can I buy a business that has a manager in place?

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I already work full-time flipping houses so I don't have time to manage another business. But if I would ever want to buy an existing business and have a manager that runs everything, is that possible? Where should I look? I have talked to a business broker and he tells me that I should not expect to be able to do that.

But some people do it because there are very large companies that own many many businesses and the executives obviously can't be everywhere at once.
 

djbaxter

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I don't see why not. You would still need to put in time monitoring the books to ensure you don't get cheated, of course, or have someone else (not the manager) do that for you.

People who own rental properties do this all the time...
 
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I don't see why not. You would still need to put in time monitoring the books to ensure you don't get cheated, of course, or have someone else (not the manager) do that for you.

People who own rental properties do this all the time...
But where do I find them? Even when I look to business brokers, I have been told that I would have to actively operate anything I bought.
 

djbaxter

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Well they're right in a sense. That doesn't mean you can't hire someone yo manage the day-to-day details, or but a business that already has someone who does or can do that.

Where to find them is another question. Seems to me your first step is to narrow down your search to the type of business you want (and you should know something about that type of business beforehand).
 
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Well they're right in a sense. That doesn't mean you can't hire someone yo manage the day-to-day details, or but a business that already has someone who does or can do that.

Where to find them is another question. Seems to me your first step is to narrow down your search to the type of business you want (and you should know something about that type of business beforehand).
Have you ever bought a business that had a manager do most of the work?
 

VirtualGlobalPhone

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farmerjohn1324 ; business is not bucket of tips and tricks. Its hard work and unique for every individual who come in contact with. The thing that works for some will not work for others.

So then you may ask how do i go about exploring this opportunity ? Well its simple as djbaxter replied initially "Why not" jump and sail through if the loss is not much of a big burden.

Best wishes...
 

djbaxter

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Have you ever bought a business that had a manager do most of the work?
No but that's for two reasons:

1. I have never bought a business. I have started two businesses from scratch but I have never bought one.

2. I would not personally want to own a business where someone else managed everything. Just not my style. I prefer to do things myself as much as possible to make sure they're done "right" (using my definition of "right").
 
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farmerjohn1324 ; business is not bucket of tips and tricks. Its hard work and unique for every individual who come in contact with. The thing that works for some will not work for others.

So then you may ask how do i go about exploring this opportunity ? Well its simple as djbaxter replied initially "Why not" jump and sail through if the loss is not much of a big burden.

Best wishes...
I already have a business as my full-time job. I don't have time to run a 2nd.

I bet you will never see Warren Buffett serving food at Dairy Queen. Get my point?
 
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I would not personally want to own a business where someone else managed everything.
And doesn't that greatly limit the scope of how large a business you are capable of owning? You are only 1 person with only so much time and energy to go around.
 

djbaxter

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And doesn't that greatly limit the scope of how large a business you are capable of owning? You are only 1 person with only so much time and energy to go around.
Yes but at this point in my life that's my preference.
 

djbaxter

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Getting back to you though, farmerjohn1324 ...

What about the possibility of investing in another business as a partner? perhaps even a silent partner?
 

VirtualGlobalPhone

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I already have a business as my full-time job. I don't have time to run a 2nd.
Mate its simple, if you have leading or being the leader in "knowledge and experience" of that second business you are planning. Then yes!! simply put a process and system - allow a fresh graduate with zeal to run. Be a mentor !!!

Does this make sense ?
 
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Hello farmerjohn1324

This is a very intriguing question, to me, and quite interesting too. I don't know whether it's a restriction where you live or something like this, but where I live it's really a trivial thing to have someone to managing a business of any kind for the owner. To be honest, just like djbaxter I never bought a business (for other reasons than him, but also didn't). And yet I see no problem in hiring a manager.

Some people I know have 10-12 different businesses, all of them run by employee managers, and it works pretty well for them - sometimes even better than they running themselves (some kinds of business do require professional management). I see the role of a business owner as much more of supervising management than putting their own hands to work (disclosure: I might be biased to thinking like this, as I studied management and advocate for my profession).

About Julia Sta Romana's suggestions, I would strongly recommend considering re-hiring the previous manager, as the manager itself or at least as a kind of "consultant" for a while until you train someone else. Promoting someone in-house is also a good idea, as long as you are careful enough to pick someone ready and with a good profile for management, and not someone who is the best in some operational routing. Otherwise you could lose 2 workers in 1 person by promoting the wrong one (I see that a lot).

I would also suggest you to be careful if you plan to recruit and select the manager yourself. Once I hired a manager with poor education and who previously managed a very successful business in the same industry. I paid too much because I thought his experience would drive me somewhere great. Unfortunately it didn't end well. Today I would do a technical choice and hire someone who studied management - even an non-experienced but ambitious undergrad. This kind of person is eager to show results. I could hire someone like this for a third of the price I hired this professional.
 

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