Creating a Succession Plan
I spent much of yesterday afternoon at a chemotherapy center with my Aunt, which made me think about a few things, including my own mortality. While I am thankful to be healthy, life changing events can happen at almost any time. Being a domain investor/developer puts me in a position that is different from many others, and I think we need to think about a succession plan should unexpected something happen.
The most important thing is to make sure a loved one (wife, child, brother, parent…etc) or other trusted person knows about your business. They should know details such as registrars, domain holdings, passwords, email accounts, forums, parking companies, partners, clients, bank accounts and other details. If something happens to you, it’s important that someone trusted knows what to do with your business. Here are some things I recommend:
Let your trusted person know which registrars you use, the account numbers, and the passwords (kept in a safe and secure location). If you have an Account Manager at the registrar, the trusted person should have your AM’s email address to make sure domains are paid up and accessible if liquidation is necessary.
For those of you who develop your domain names, a trusted person should know what agreements you have in place with advertisers – or at least know where to find your agreements. While advertisers and partners will be understanding if something happens, money is money, and they will eventually expect to have their agreements honored or their payments refunded.
For those of you who rely mostly on PPC, a trusted person should know the contacts at your parking company. You will want to make sure your revenue continues to be paid regularly.
Your important domain contacts, clients, forum login names, and other industry accounts should be known to your trusted person. If liquidation is necessary, you’d want the names to sell for the most money possible, so it’s important that the trusted person know where to sell them.
Your sales and tax records are important things that your trusted person will need to know where to find. The government will still expect to be paid based on your sales from that year no matter what happens to you.
I am sure you will want your trusted person to take over your business or to liquidate your domain names, and they will need to know how to do so. For those of you who have full fledged businesses with strong PPC earnings or developed website earnings, the business should probably be maintained or sold – rather than just the domain names being liquidated. When deciding, you should take your trusted person’s interest in the business into consideration. If you would want your domain names to be sold, you should let your trusted person know what names you own, which are most valuable, and how to sell them.
While your business isn’t the most important thing that someone will be thinking about if something should happen to you, it is important that someone know what to do in the event of an unexpected life changing event.
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