Whenever I give a talk and tell the Pardot story, one of the 10 most popular questions I get is “did you have a plan to sell the company?” My response is always that our goal was to build the best company possible and to make sure that it met the two following conditions:
- Be the best place to work and the best place to be a customer
- Follow the core values of positive, self-starting, and supportive
If a potential acquirer comes along and makes an offer we can’t refuse, we’ll look at and consider it (which is what happened). Put another way, the business isn’t for sale, but tell me what you’re offering.
Yes, it’s common for entrepreneurs to have a financial goal and to sell the company when the financial goal is met. Based on how much luck and timing is involved in a successful exit, I think the best approach is to build a company to last, not to sell.
What else? What are some more thoughts on build to last or build to sell?