What Does Nabity Business Advisors Really Do?

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I’m often asked what Nabity Business Advisors is really all about.

I like to tell people that clients hire us to quarterback a lot of the big, strategic planning issues that they have with their companies. They typically have great attorneys and accountants, but they need an expert to help them analyze and strategize the big-picture things.

These things include whether you should turn your company over to your child, how to structure your estate plan to make sure you treat all of your kids fairly, whether you want to give your executive management team an opportunity to own part of the company, and eliminating estate taxes that could hit your estate hard in the future.

“Clients hire us to quarterback big, strategic planning issues with their company.”

When we work on these types of issues, we analyze, we communicate, and we build strategies that work extremely well for our clients.

If you’d like to visit and share some ideas about your company or get to know each other, reach out to me and I’d be happy to follow up with you. I look forward to hearing from you!

The 4 Things We Strive to Accomplish With All Our Clients

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We’re passionate about what we do, and we evaluate ourselves based on the results we get with our clients. There are four things we want to accomplish with any clients we work with:

1. The siblings still love each other. After mom and dad are gone, we want to make sure the kids still want to spend the holidays together and hang with each other as a happy family.

2. The wealth of the family goes to those who can manage it well and make the wealth grow.

3. The business succeeds and thrives after the founders are gone. Many times when this happens, the businesses are sold or the departments are transferred to different parts of the country and employees lose their jobs. We strive to make sure that doesn’t happen.

4. The executives have the opportunity to become owners and entrepreneurs. This way they can carry on the legacy of the company.

“If we’ve accomplished these four things, we know we’ve done our job well.”

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’d be happy to help!

Transitioning Your Estate Fairly to Your Children

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If you own and operate your own company, you know what a challenge it can be to develop an estate plan. You might have some kids who work in the business and some who don’t, or you might have an in-law who works in the business and other kids who don’t.

What do you do if the business is 80% of your estate, though? Are you going to give it to the family member who’s owning and operating the company and not the others? If you do, that probably won’t make for a very happy Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.

To avoid this dilemma, you need to work with a firm like ours to develop a strategic plan so that when mom and dad are gone, the kids get along, they feel like everyone is treated fairly, and those that are owning and operating the business get the respect they deserve and the ownership they deserve to continue to operate the company successfully. The other family members also need to feel like they got a fair deal and that mom and dad loved them enough that they ensured the estate plan looked out for their interests as well as those working in the business.

“We want the parents to look down and be proud of what we put together.”

If you give our firm an opportunity to help with this kind of situation, we can dig into the details, issues, and emotions involving all the different family members. We can then do a study on the dynamic within the family and help you develop a great strategic plan so that when mom and dad are gone, the kids still get along and the family stays together.

If you have any questions or would be interested in a free consultation with us, please let us know. Just give us a call or send us an email and we’d be happy to assist you.

How to Transition Out of Your Company When You’re Ready

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Starting a company is one of the biggest decisions you’ll ever make in your life, and your hope is that at some point in time, it will grow to the point where it has real value and you can sell your share of stock, retire, and do whatever you want in your later years.

How do you go about this process, though?

First, what is your company worth? If it’s a huge company and has ongoing revenue coming from all sorts of different places, buyers will be very interested in it because if you walk out the door, they know they can walk through that same door and keep the company going while making money.

What if the company relies on who you are as a person, though? What if it relies on your talents and your ability to generate revenue? If that’s the case, odds are it won’t be worth nearly as much. This is why it’s important to replicate yourself.

Let’s say you have replicated yourself and you’ve built a big enough company with a team of good people who can operate your company when you’re gone. What’s really important is to plan for your exit. Many people don’t do this. Instead, they just wait until it’s time to retire and hope that everything will work out.

“Our succession planning process can help you plan your exit.”

Think about going through a process where you can plan your exit. Something that allows you to not only value your company and what it’s worth, but also look at the people around you that you can possibly sell the business to. It’s important to plan ahead because some of those people might not have a lot of money right now, and it’s important for you to get stock in their hands so when you are ready to retire, they can go to the bank and finance the buyout.

You might also have the desire to transfer the business to your children. In that case, you may have key executives you need to keep around to ensure the business will thrive once you retire. If those executives don’t have any stock, you need to offer incentive plans to keep them in the business.

That’s what our succession planning process does. Our firm will help you look at the valuation of the company, the people you have on board who could possibly succeed you, and formulate a plan to help you transition out of the business when you’re ready to do it.

If you need to do some succession planning or you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to give us a call so we can learn about your business. We’d love to help you.

Creating the Best Compensation Packages for Your Management Team

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If you run and own a company, you know that it can be a real challenge to figure out the compensation package for your management team.

Sometimes, your management teams are family; sometimes they’re not. Sometimes you may want your management team to become stockholders.

Oftentimes if you build a compensation plan that is too rich and performance isn’t associated with the money the management team is making, then the company can begin to drift financially.

It’s important to do a study to determine the right type of compensation plan for your management team. For example, do you want to have a low base with high bonuses based on profits and performance? Or do you want to offer a higher base with extra benefits for your management team that you don’t offer to all of the employees in the company?

It can also be very important to make sure that you have longevity in your business, stop turnover, and make sure that the people who are good stay with you until they retire. Often, people don’t leave your company because they don’t like working for you or they want a better salary. Most people leave because they can’t figure out how they will build enough wealth to be able to retire.

So, while people may be looking for a better salary, they may be more focused on a job that offers more perks, like stock options, bonus plans, deferred compensation packages, or salary continuation packages. Salary continuation packages provide an extension of their salary once your employees hit retirement. Most people can’t retire on their 401(k) plan, so providing extra benefits for your management team can be very important.

Another reason extra benefits are important is that you may want to transfer your company on to your children. In that case, it’s going to be really important to hang on to that top management team. Even if they aren’t going to get any stock in the business, setting up something supplemental to provide extra wealth for that group will motivate them to stick around.

“Providing extra benefits for your management team can be very beneficial.”

Ultimately, it’s incredibly important to get a study done on your compensation plan for your management team. We will look at the long-term objectives for your company, who you need to keep, and who you need to recruit in order to have a successful business. We will take all of that information into account and help you upgrade your compensation package so that you can hang on to (or recruit) that great management talent.

If you have any questions about compensation packages, please don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I would be happy to help you!

The True Value of Entrepreneurship

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My company works with entrepreneurs at all levels of success.

Sometimes, starting a business is like loading an airplane at the end of the runway. Once you’re set to go with enough fuel for a long trip and start heading down the runway, you might start wondering whether the plane is actually going to take off. Eventually the plane starts to gain some altitude and you’re finally off the ground.

At this point it’s a relief to be in the air and on your way. The same is true of business. But, what happens when you notice tall trees directly in your path at the end of the runway? How do you get enough altitude to overcome these obstacles?

Things might be rough at first, but eventually you’ll find that you’ve reached a point where you can cruise a little. This new series, which will be focused on entrepreneurs, is really aimed at those who have cleared the trees and are cruising in their business.

I run into a lot of burnt-out people who have been in business 10, 15, or even 20 years and are experiencing a lot of problems. Whether it’s because of issues with employees, financial issues, growth issues, or anything else, these people have become disheartened over time. People like these have “put on dark glasses”—to them, everything is “shaded.”

Looking through such a dark lens makes hard for them to see any opportunities ahead. All they can focus on is fear and anxiety about the future. All of a sudden their hope, vision, innovation, and sense of destiny shrinks.

If this sounds like you, it’s time for a pep talk.

The first thing I want to remind you of is that as an entrepreneur, what you do is critically important to the marketplace. No civilization would be able to last without vibrant entrepreneurialism.

“Take those dark glasses off, start thinking about your purpose, and ask yourself, ‘What can I do with my gift?'”

It’s an incredible feeling to live in a country that allows you the freedom to work and create businesses. Entrepreneurs are the key ingredient to the survival of a community. Additionally, entrepreneurs play a big role in upholding our democracy.

There would be no freedom if it weren’t for entrepreneurs—who fight for liberty and equal opportunity in the marketplace. We are a free people largely thanks to entrepreneurs.

Entrepreneurs provide economic vitality through the job opportunities they bring. Those job opportunities lead to family stability, which allows communities and people to grow.

If you know me, you know that I believe in the spiritual power things hold in life. I truly believe that entrepreneurs are essential to carrying out God’s strategic plan. I personally believe we’re all made in God’s image and that he loves us all.

As an entrepreneur, you provide the stability He wants us to all have in life. Your entrepreneurial position provides opportunities for families, teaches people the value of work, and allows communities to thrive.

In many ways, I believe that entrepreneurs are ambassadors of God. If you have been given a skill, a passion, or talent—you have been given a gift. It’s incredibly important that you accept the destiny brought by your gift. Entrepreneurship is not all about money; it’s about the benefits and benchmarks you provide within the marketplace and community.

Finally, remember that you are instilling things in people that are the fundamentals of life. It is so important that you recognize the value of what you do as an entrepreneur.

So, I want you to do something. Take those dark glasses off, start thinking about your purpose, and ask yourself, “What can I do with my gift?”

If you can develop a vision for your future, you can achieve a lot of great things.

If you have any other questions or would like more information, feel free to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

How Retiring Shareholders Can Divest Completely Tax-Free

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If you’re a retiring shareholder who wants to sell your company stock to younger employees or future company leaders, an Employee Stock Ownership Plan is one the most tax-efficient ways for you to sell your business and retire.

Let me explain with an example.

Say you have a corporation and you’re the majority stockholder and you’re getting ready to retire.There are two young stockholders in the company who intend to buy your stock when you retire. They may pay you with corporate earnings or borrow from the bank, but one of the biggest things that gets overlooked in this scenario is the tax cost of buying out a retiring shareholder.

For simplicity’s sake in this example, let’s say your stock is worth $1. The corporation and our two young stockholders need to come up with that dollar to buy your stock. That means the corporation needs to earn $1.43 in income so they can pay $0.43 in taxes to the government (if you’re in a 30% bracket).

You just got your dollar for your stock, but that’s not the end of it. The key question is whether you profited by selling the stock. Let’s say you had almost no basis in the stock when you sold; you could turn around and give another $0.20 in capital gain tax to the government.

Between you and the corporation, just to sell your $1 stock, you lost a combined 63 cents in this hypothetical. In short, 63% goes out the window if you buy stock the way most people buy it when someone retires.

There’s a unique alternative to this, however. This option would be of interest to someone who really cares about allowing the company’s employees to become stockholders and manage the future of the business.

“By selling your shares to the ESOP, you create a completely tax-free transaction.”

You can do this by setting up an Employee Stock Ownership Plan, or ESOP.

This is a retirement plan that requires you to follow all the federal rules for 401(k) plans, pension plans, and profit sharing plans. The good thing is that the federal government likes these plans because wealth—in the form of stock—gets handed down to rank-and-file employees, so there are big time incentives.

With this option, your stock is bought by the ESOP rather than the corporation when you retire. The ESOP needs money to do this, so you would arrange financing from a bank. When retiring, you sell your shares right back to the ESOP, which is funded by the bank.

The first major benefit is that if you set things up right when selling your stock to the ESOP, you can completely eliminate capital gain tax. In our hypothetical example, you’re then saving $0.20. Another great thing is that the government allows you to put up to 25% of your payroll into the ESOP as well, which can then be deducted as a business expense. That eliminates the 43% tax.

By selling your shares to the ESOP, you create a completely tax-free transaction.

The payments needed to pay the bank for the ESOP’s financing are made on a tax-deductible basis as well. This is where it gets good for the employees.

Your debt to the bank gets really high when first starting. A typical amortization schedule drops that debt down to nearly nothing; your typical loan is usually something like a seven-year loan. As you begin to pay down that debt and equity starts to build, the equity goes out to your employees in the form of stock shares in the ESOP.

In the long run, your employees will build wealth, which they would never have been able to do if you hadn’t set this sort of strategy up.

Now, I don’t believe you should set up an ESOP unless your company is worth $5 million or more and your annual payroll is $1.5 million or more. It’s pretty expensive to set up an ESOP compared to your typical retirement plan. For the right company though, it’s a really great strategy.

If you’d like help, we prepare a preliminary assessment that will go through all the details of setting up an ESOP, examine the financing you need, anticipate the potential tax savings, and help you work out all the details before you make the next step.

If you’re interested, just give me a call or send me an email. I’d love to work with you to find a solution for your business.

Entrepreneurial Purpose Part 2: Overcoming Spiritual Battles

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Today I’m back to bring you part two of our Entrepreneurial Purpose series. Last time, we talked about the importance of being an entrepreneur. If you haven’t already, go check out the first part here.

Now, let’s dive into today’s topic. I want you to ask yourself right now if you’re locked in a spiritual battle with your business. The bottom line is that if you run a company, you’re going to encounter issues. This can be everything from marketplace and industry changes to employee turnover, and more. But one issue that often goes overlooked in any business is what’s happening deep inside of the heart of the owner.

Beyond all the other issues you might be dealing with, things going on in your heart and mind could have a huge impact on your company. So, ask yourself: Are you depressed? Are you having feelings of despair? Is there a lot of fear in your heart about where you’re headed? Are you tired and burnt out?

All of these feelings can destroy your energy, creativity, and your ability to strategize. Feeling these things can also destroy the hope that anything you’re doing will have an impact. When this happens, you go into “survival mode.” You aren’t doing much beyond simply trying to make it through.

This goes back to the dark glasses I mentioned in part one. The things going on in your heart and mind may be distorting your view of what’s actually occurring within your business. But, why do these things happen to business owners? I personally believe that business owners can get caught up in a spiritual battle without even realizing it.

Before I explain what I mean, I want to make something clear: It’s my opinion that if you’re in a “sin business” or if your business preys on people and their money, nothing I talk about in this series will do you any good. If taking advantage of people is the way you’re doing business, calamity is going to be at your door sooner than later.

So, how can you tell if you’re locked in a spiritual battle as a business owner? There are a few signs. Maybe you’re feeling short-fused, unable to shake a sensation of frustration, and overwhelmed with paralyzing fear and anxiety. If any of these are the case for you as a business owner, there’s a good chance you’re locked in a spiritual battle.

But you should know this: what you do is important to God, and He wants you to succeed. He wants you to have a positive impact on your community by giving opportunity to your employees and their families. He wants you to inspire young entrepreneurs. He may even want you to rescue people in poverty who just can’t seem to get ahead. God might be looking at you as being the source for bringing his love and energy to the marketplace.

“What you do is important to God, and He wants you to succeed.”

That being said, there is evil in the world. We see the good and evil around us every day. This evil is God’s enemy, and the evil side of life wants you to feel defeated, despaired, and living so miserably that you’re unable to see the opportunities God has given you. If you’re working hard to run an ethical company with honor, integrity, and the right principles, you can be sure the Devil is going to want to keep you from being successful. On the other side of the coin, you cannot expect good things from operating on the dark side of business. Calamity will come and the money you might make simply is not worth it.

But, if God wants your business to be a beacon of hope and you are locked in a spiritual battle, there is a way out. Oppression, disrespect, greed, and anger in your environment are all symptoms of a spiritual battle.

Another example of the battle of good and evil influencing your company and life is if you as an owner are working so hard to drive your company that you’ve basically abandoned your family. God wants you to run a good company, but he wants you to love and care for your spouse and family too. He does not want you to run a company at the expense of those you love.

So, what does God want out of your company? First of all, he wants a godly atmosphere. The speech of the office should be healthy, instead of wrapped up in gossip and negativity. God wants you to provide opportunities and leadership, so that your employees can someday go out in the marketplace and make an impact like you have. He wants you to serve your customers and provide value in such a way that they know you have their back.

We know that God’s spirit stands for love, peace, kindness, goodness, gentleness, and self-control. These are all the key to knowing you’re on the right track. But this doesn’t mean you need to be soft on discipline and not hold people accountable, or that you shouldn’t have standards of performance. You should expect the people who work for you to do their best.

I can tell you from my 38 years of business that the people who run their companies the way I’m talking about will attract blessings. It’s basically the spiritual law of physics.

Now we’ve talked about the good, but what about the evil? God’s enemy will try to set you up to fail. He’ll feed your mind with lies and get you to a point where you start making mistakes and bad decisions. Don’t fall for this deceit. Evil forces will manufacture turmoil that will hurt you, your workers, and your business. The bad decisions that can come from this could hurt your business, your family, and your life. This is the environment of the Devil.

But, if you can overcome a spiritual battle in your business by following a godly path, success and joy will come to your life and the lives of those in your business.

If you have any other questions or would like more information, feel free to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

How We Help Create a Thriving Future for Your Business

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Not having estate transition plans in place can be a nightmare for business owners, their families, their successors, and their heirs.

We’re here to just to help you create a succession plan that goes smoothly. When the time comes, we’re here to make sure your business is thriving and in good hands when you walk away.

Watch this short video to get an idea of how we help business owners plan for future success.

If you have concerns about how to develop the right estate and transition plans for your business, contact Nabity Business Advisors on our website for a complimentary consultation.

How a Buyout Agreement Could Save Your Business

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If you own a business with a partner and you have not planned for a catastrophe, then you could end up creating a huge mess down the road if something should happen.

For example, if you own a company that’s worth $5 million and you and your business partner both own 50% of the company, then both of you would have $2.5 million in your estate. What happens if your business partner dies?

Say your partner, “Joe,” has a wife and four kids, and Joe dies suddenly. The stock that he owns will then be passed onto his wife, who will need every bit of that $2.5 million to take care of the family after Joe’s death. What if you don’t have the money to pay that amount?

One thing that you can do is have a note that says that in the event of your partner’s death, you will pay the $2.5 million estate to your partner’s family over a five- or 10-year period. The problem is that notes aren’t deductible, and the payments to your partner’s wife aren’t deductible, and it could create a huge cash flow problem for you and could put the company in jeopardy.

You need to have a buyout agreement that’s called a “buy-sell” agreement. That agreement will have a set price and terms that are agreed upon ahead of time that will enable the surviving partner to buy out the other partner’s share in the company in the event of their premature death.

“Our company helps business owners figure this all out.”

One of the important things to think about is having life insurance on each partner. You can go to a life insurance company and get an insurance policy that is equal to the amount of value that each partner owns (in this case, $2.5 million each) and make the other partner the beneficiary of that payout. Then, in the event of your partner’s death, the insurance will pay out to you, who will then turn around and pay the surviving spouse. Then the spouse will return that stock back to you.

Sometimes people think it’s a great idea to have the corporation be the beneficiary or the owner of the insurance policy. That can end up being a big mistake because depending on what type of corporation you have, there can be alternative minimum taxes on the money the corporation receives. You can also run into problems when getting the stock back that would cause you as the surviving partner to lose a substantial amount of money.

If you do the agreement and buy the stock from your partner’s spouse, then your basis will go up significantly. If you don’t do this correctly and you sell the company later, you stand to lose quite a bit of money in taxes.

Our company helps business owners figure this all out. We help you design the structure of what that buyout agreement should look like and can help you find the right insurance companies that fit your company’s need to able to insure each other and have the money to complete the buyout in the the event of an unexpected death.

You really want to plan ahead on this, so if you have any questions or you want to get this process started, give me a call or send me an email. We’d be happy to help!

If you have any other questions or would like more information, feel free to give me a call or send me an email. I look forward to hearing from you soon.