Above all else, franchising a business must begin with quality. Don’t doubt it.
Quality franchising begins with careful analysis of both the business and the people behind it. But for many (most) business owners, the very idea of franchising can easily lessen objectivity.
Franchising a business must include an honest feasibility study.
Prospective franchisors should conduct a serious feasibility study before moving forward. But in too many cases the ‘study’ is glossed over in a rush to move forward. In other cases a consultant can twist feasibility into nothing more than a pitch to encourage franchising and sell their services. Feasibility must be a hard assessment. Note: we do not believe that a consultant should encourage franchising; a consultant should mentor until ownership sees all sides and can make an informed decision. Run away if you are told to do it.
And one last warning: successful entrepreneurs too often believe their success in business means they have the skills to successfully franchise. That’s not true. Franchising is a unique industry with its own traps and pitfalls. Just because a person is successful in business does not mean they can build a successful franchise operation. The reasons are many and have nothing to do with the person’s skill in business. Feasibility is also a time to uncover the traps and pitfalls. Franchising is not simple.
Any business can be franchised, but often it’s NOT a good idea
Serious prospective franchisors appreciate our thoughtful approach to decision making. While we don’t encourage franchising we are not afraid to advise against it if there are reasons to do so. Choose a consultant who is interested in YOU not just a fee. It’s important to understand that prospective franchisors can be blindsided by certain types of encouragement. Read this article. If your’re thinking of franchising you’ll shake your head in agreement while reading.
These client endorsements on the subject are testament to our concern and our approach. After careful study, you (not a consultant) determine that franchising is the right course then a quality plan is necessary. Your plan must be excellent from the start or the loss of time, money and energy will overwhelm you and you will quit.
Franchising a business demands proper structure and organization
Organization and paperwork are important to all businesses and franchising is no different. The pieces must fit together perfectly. And know that not every employee is a good match for a franchise organization. We’ll help you understand the kind of talent you need to avoid relationship problems in the future.
The Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD)
Specific legal documents are required to comply with federal and state laws. While many franchisors dislike this part of the business, we see the FDD as the backbone of marketing and franchise relationships. You need an attorney who is an expert in franchising. Insist on that. It’s a complicated field.
Building the franchise network
When franchising a business, you reach your potential through the right mix of strategy, operations, marketing, training, support, relationships, and legal structure. Only when these elements are melded together will your franchise network grow and be strong. We will help you develop the best practices possible with these goals in mind.
New franchisors require mentoring just like franchisees
Successful franchising requires a great deal of problem solving after the franchise launch. If you’re spending time wrestling with problems that a mentor could help solve then you are doing yourself and your franchisees a disservice. We’ll provide expert counsel so that you can sleep at night. Your franchisees need you for training and support in order to succeed. You need support as well. Our job is to provide that. You’ll have a friend who knows you and your business. One who has already been where you plan to go.
Making a comeback after franchising a business
Many new franchises stall and they do so many reasons. Age, planning, services, relationships and litigation are just a few. If management is fighting fires it is not able to focus on planning. There are three choices when things are bad: jump ship, ride it down, or solve the problem with a new plan. If you choose the last option, we can help. We’ll do the triage, stop the bleeding and work out a new plan. This demands absolute commitment, but if you’re up to the task we’ll be there.
Franchising a business also demands knowledge of building strong franchise relationships
Franchising can be hard on relationships. To say differently is a lie. One of the worst illnesses for a healthy concept is the onset of hard feelings. To fix the problem calm must prevail and neutral ground has to be found where the parties can meet. We understand relationship counseling. Read this article on Franchise Relationships. Our message is cooperation not litigation. We are experts at analyzing franchise problems and we are a good alternative to litigation. If you are already franchising and are suffering bad relationships, you know it’s a nightmare. We can probably improve the situation if you are honest and willing.