Franchise Best Practices Improve the Entire Franchise System
Analyzing franchise best practices is the most interesting part of franchise consulting. And in many ways the most critical. After three plus decades of studying franchise systems, it’s clear that best practices result in better franchise development.
Franchise Best Practices are a Physical Checkup and a Close-up View of the Franchise System
Once underway, a franchise system develops an ‘automatic pilot’ if you will. Systems for sales, training and support are used to process franchisees. But installing systems does not necessarily mean that they are adequate or working correctly. Only time will tell if systems are adequate for franchisees and the whole system. While it’s true that franchisors make all the system decisions initially, those decisions must be reviewed and refreshed when needed.
Our franchise best practices methods work because we operate with experienced, unbiased, franchise-savvy eyes. While franchisors and franchisees cannot be fully neutral on critical issues, they can work through problems with an unbiased third party. When a franchise is emerging, many aspects are theoretical, not really proven. Best practices can point out corrections before early choices become ruts in the program. In the case of growing and established networks, problems can fester for long periods and resentments can make resolutions difficult. Fix those concerns before true resentment leads to lower income, lower expectations and a breakdown leading to legal remedies. Best practices, if performed correctly, can analyze and smooth out system designs and real life flaws.
In short, franchise best practices focus on two essential elements. They are: 1. ongoing analysis of the model, and 2. maintaining quality relationships between franchisor and franchisees.
Franchise Best Practices begin with the Model
No doubt, the franchise model should come to market in its finest form. But unfortunately that is very often not the case. What’s worse is compounding the problem by bringing in franchisees who shouldn’t be there in the first place. When the wrong franchisee is brought into even a good model, trouble is coming and sickness is going to spread. Franchisees suffer and the franchisor becomes bogged down in the mess that they themselves created. We can do a great deal to repair an imperfect system by analyzing problems through an unbiased lens. And know this: the human side of franchising is generally not a consideration until it’s too late. Do something about it.
An unfortunate fact of life is that many entrepreneurs are lured into franchising their concept by unscrupulous consultants who are seeking nothing more than a fee. Often, a new franchisor is filled with thoughts of great growth, wealth and glory, but they can be moving blindly without knowing it until begin to unravel. So, franchise best practices can prove essential when start-up unplanned launch problems immediately appear. When a new franchisor’s stomach says that something is wrong, they need to get help.
Franchise Best Practices are Ultimately About Relationships
Whether you are a new or longer term franchisor, read up on the countless lawsuits wherein franchisors are sued by their franchisees. Many, perhaps even most, of those lawsuits resulted from bad business practices, but rest assured that all of them included bad relationships.
Franchisors, even the most conscientious, are wrestling with franchise sales, training, field problems, and countless other issues that absorb their time. An attitude of “I trained you and I offer you support, so get to work” is not uncommon and not hard to develop given so many demands. But just like any other relationship, feelings are sensed even when not spoken and feelings of resentment develop and run deep on both sides. Franchise best practices, when performed professionally, impartially and correctly can surface and resolve many business and personal issues that, if not confronted and resolved, can ruin an entire system. Identifying and curing conflicts before they are red hot is the goal of Franchise Best Practices.