Searching for the best franchise can be a slippery slope
Is there such a thing as the Best Franchise?
For more than three decades, Bibby Group has raised a stop sign whenever asked ‘what’s the best franchise?’ It’s far and away the most common inquiry made by people who are new to franchising and it’s an understandable question. But the answer is always the same. And in turn, that answer is exactly the same as when asked about ‘hot franchises’. In both cases there is no such thing.
Searching for the best franchise only makes sense in the context of what the best franchise is for a particular person. As we’ve cautioned countless times, little attention should be paid to the advice of a friend, a neighbor, a consultant or another franchise owner. The only time another person’s opinion should be seriously considered is when the two of you share the same personality, skills, interests and finances. In other words there is no such thing as one size fits all in the franchise industry. Granted, researching various options through sources like Entrepreneur’ Franchise 500 or Cato’s review of franchise loan defaults makes all the sense in the world, but they’re for use further down the road. Those sources are to be considered as part of franchise due diligence. Initially however, they are premature in the big scheme of things. First and foremost, choosing the best franchise should always be 100% self-centered.
Adopt the following statement and you’ll be on the right track. “The franchise I choose will always be about me; not the other way around.”
Choosing the best franchise is no different than choosing the right home, the right car or the right clothing. Most likely you don’t adopt new clothing styles of the very young if you’re past the age of 25. You don’t do it because it’s not you and you’d feel as well as look ridiculous if you followed along. The same is true in franchising, but somehow the need for differentiation when thinking about a business opportunity gets lost. Perhaps it makes sense because doubt is part of dealing with new territory. But think of it this way. You have a unique personality. You have a mind of your own. You have your own set of goals, your own financial statement and so on. All of those things that define who you are must be dealt with long before asking opinions on the best franchise. In fact, all of those things must be defined and examined long before you begin your researching opportunities.
Is selecting the best franchise for you a daunting task? You bet it is. It’s certainly more challenging than choosing a school, a course of study or even a career. All of those things can be changed without dire consequences. But committing to a business and making the investment in money, time and emotions is a totally different scenario. Once you are in, you are in. And that is even more true of a franchise than of an independent business started part time or on the side. Buying a franchise means adopting the franchisor’s system, equipment, schedule and all the components associated with what is supposed to be a proven concept.
So what’s the real starting point in determining the best franchise for you? You start by answering these two critical questions: Should I really be self-employed and if so, what type of business should it be? Are those tough questions? They’re very tough, especially because acting on them equals a life altering event. And as just said, if the actions involve a franchise the commitment will be life changing.
If you’re seriously wrestling with an entrepreneurial future look into The Focus Program for Emerging Entrepreneurs. It is specifically designed to reveal who you might be as an entrepreneur and give you more clarity and direction about your potential business future.
So, the bottom line is this. If you’re thinking leads you to believe the franchise industry is right for you, finding the best franchise will be made much easier knowing that you are in search of the concept that best represents who you are!