Every Business Owner Will Exit Their Business... One Day!

Are you prepared to do it on your terms?

Most business owners have never exited their business before. Straight Talk offers compelling reasons to begin succession planning long before you need it and introduces readers to The Donnelly Method, a four-phased approach to ensure the leadership side of your succession and exit delivers the outcomes you want.  

With Straight Talk

  • Learn the critical steps to prepare your successors to run your business profitably and sustainably, whether you plan for them to own it or you choose to sell it to a third party.

  • Discover the road blocks and barriers that can derail your best intentions.


Straight Talk received five 5-Star reviews from Readers’ Favorite in 2018 and is a Bronze Award winner in the 2019 Readers’ Favorite contest!


Abby has an excellent understanding of the small to mid-size business owner. She has spent years listening and understanding their wants, desires and needs. Her ability to take that knowledge and succinctly provide insightful advice has created a “must read” for anyone who is thinking about selling their business.
— Adam Duggins, Managing Partner at New Page Capital

Straight Talk About Planning Your Succession should be on the must-read list for any business owner. Most of the information on succession planning focuses on the financial aspects and ignores the behavioral or emotional hurdles – which can be the most difficult. I applaud Abby for giving business owners a roadmap for navigating these challenges.
— Darlene Leonard, Managing Partner at Smith Leonard PLLC

Straight Talk is the perfect book for owners of small to medium size businesses who want to make the perfect exit. The Donnelly Method for Succession and Exit is a special, tried and true process to ensure a smooth and successful exit. It is very easy to read and implement. Considering all the effort you’ve put into your business, this book will help you get everything out of it and more!
— Henry Hutcheson, President at Family Business USA & Author of Dirty Little Secrets of Family Business

Abby Donnelly has written a must-read primer for anyone considering selling or transitioning a business. This book has practical, no-nonsense advice that every business owner should consume and master.
— Dennis Stearns, President at Stearns Financial & Award-winning entrepreneur and Business Scenario Planner

Straight Talk! is an authentic, straightforward and insightful look at getting organized to transition your business. Abby’s thoughtful and practical advice gets to the heart of what must be embraced by leaders who have the awesome responsibility to successfully transition their company on behalf of their employees, families, customers and communities.
— Stanhope Kelly, Chairman at Wake Forest University Center for Private Business

Exiting a business that you have grown from birth to maturity is not easy.  As one who has stumbled through the process of “retiring” from my own business, I have great appreciation for the methodology developed by Abby in this exit guide for business owners.  In this easy and quick read, there are jewels of insight and wisdom, worthy of frequent review and reference. Straight Talk spells out the preparation, planning, and execution of this difficult and emotional process. It will benefit me greatly as I bring my exit strategy to fruition, and it will be a great tool for the senior management team that now runs the company.
— Steve Bright, CEO at Bright Plastics
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Straight Talk! serves as a compelling, natural transition for the next step of ownership…when it’s time to gracefully and productively exit with purpose. Whether your exit is in five years or ten, planting the seed in your head now and following Abby’s guidelines will help it feel less like an upheaval and more like the healthy, natural progression it should be.
— M. Steve Cavanaugh, Jr., P.E. – President & CEO at Cavanaugh & Associates, P.A.

What makes for a successful exit? In the poem “Late Fragments”, Raymond Carver asks: “And did you get what you wanted out of life, even so?”  This question gets to the essence of Straight Talk! Abby clearly defines the necessary steps, tools and tactics to create a smooth transition, maximize the value of your business, and preserve your legacy.  Straight Talk! is a must-read for any business owner and provides real value regardless of the stage of your career.  Abby combines 25 years of coaching experience, with owning and selling a business, to create a roadmap to ensure business owners are able to say “yes, I did get what I wanted out of life.  
— Gary Fly, President at Performance CXO

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Straight Talk! takes succession planning from “I will think about this someday” – to — “I need to start planning now in order to do this right”. Abby has spelled out the many struggles that come with exit planning, and provides the critical reasons to not delay.  As a CPA and a Certified Valuation Analyst that has consulted on over 100 effective business successions, I have seen firsthand the success business owners have when they plan well — and the trials they go through when they don’t. If you want to maximize the effectiveness of your exit, take a cue from the pages of Straight Talk!
— ⎯ Duane Tolander, CPA/ABV CVA at HDH Advisors, LLC
For any of my counterparts who own or lead a business Abby’s insight and experience is extremely valuable.  Her grasp of the challenges: financial, organizational, and emotional of selling your business is impressive.  She speaks to the business owner as a friend facing a major life change, which is exactly what this is.  The use of stories and scenarios help the business owner feel understood.  Abby really strikes a chord when she relates to the sale of a home and the preparation that goes into that process.  Whether you’ve given it any thought, or are just curious as to your next steps for your business this is a must read.
— Ollie Chandhok, Market President & Publisher at Triad Business Journal