I’d like to franchise my restaurant. Any advice?
Franchising a restaurant requires the same steps and process as franchising any type of business or concept.
We always suggest a prospective franchisor begin with a true franchise feasibility study to determine if franchising is an appropriate path for expansion. On completion of the feasibility study we still don’t recommend that a client to franchise because we consider that to be strictly the client’s decision. On the other hand, we sometimes suggest a client not franchise. That might seem odd, but there’s a good reason. The decision to franchise any business should always be made by the owner, never the consultant. An honest consultant should ask lots of questions and help the prospective franchisor think about franchising facts of life. Pointing out red flags in feasibility is one of our trademark approaches to the industry. While many consultants encourage franchising, it is inappropriate to do so. When the consultant offers strong encouragement it should be a signal to get a second opinion. A consultant that encourages franchising is looking for a fee and not looking out for the best interests of the client. Be careful.
Franchising a restaurant is the same as franchising any business
The bottom line of franchising is a strong, profitable model that can be taught and repeated. While there are many other factors to consider such as people, maturity, demographics, popularity and finances, the model remains critical.
After feasibility comes the long-haul. Here you must be 100% with your consultant and know that your best interests are first and foremost. If you have any misgivings or discomfort with your adviser get another opinion. There is a rhythm to the franchise process. It should be smooth, thoughtful and educational. Find out what the process is going to be before you start.
And please do yourself a favor. Accept that franchising is not a do-it-yourself project. Here’s more information on our approach.