The primary driver for franchising a business is to turn a business into a vehicle for growth, using intellectual property and systems as opposed to your own two hands to build your vision and brand in markets outside of your own. Building a business through franchising and creating scale in a business where scale is fundamentally not there, to begin with, can be a difficult proposition for many business owners.
Having worked with in excess of several hundred systems making this transition from company-owned growth to franchised growth, I’ve seen a lot of types of industries and types of entrepreneurs. From the ladies providing unique cleaning services to the gentleman selling pizzas, all entrepreneurs have innate talent, grit, passion and an enviable intelligence only inherent in true entrepreneurial spirits. With that said, some entrepreneurs have some weak points that make franchising a bit of a learning curve:
- Entrepreneurs are fighters who don’t know the meaning of the word “lose”. They wake up swinging, go to sleep with blood on their fists and sweat on their brow, they fight for their beliefs and vision without thinking about the consequences….Franchisees do not.
Franchisees take each step with caution, carefully planning their next move and calculating what the best decision is to make. In many ways it’s like watching a lion go on a date with a puppy, it’s awkward and can be either a loving, fun relationship or something that ends poorly. A successful franchisor figures out these dynamics and begins to see things from both parties’ perspectives and helps franchisees understand not only how things work….but also why things work the way they do.
- Franchisors need to be lovers and nurturers, in my experience, many entrepreneurs have a difficult time giving someone a hug when needed. So much of the value in a franchise model is to provide confidence and general support to people who in many cases have never run a business before. Successful franchisors either take the time to speak with franchisees on a regular basis or have staff in place to take the time to keep franchisees feeling loved throughout the franchise relationship.
- Realize that the Franchisee is another customer of your business when you become a franchisor. Although by no means is the franchisee always right, the relationship should be treated in a similar way as one with a traditional customer would be. The sooner the franchisor realizes this is the case, the faster the franchisee will start to respond positively and with praise for the franchisor’s work and support.
- Figure out the lead generation and marketing model for your business and your franchisees. Ultimately, every franchisee wants to see a good return on their investment and have a solid income in their business endeavour, it is the franchisor’s responsibility to support franchise the franchisee in achieving this. There is truth to the saying, “you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink” in franchising also, but ultimately, the franchisor should be continually committed to delivering tangible value to the franchisee, otherwise, the ongoing relationship won’t work and there will not be the sustainable royalty income a franchisor depends on.
- Franchise growth requires an infrastructure, don't forget to feed your "inner customer" as your franchise company expands and your network grows. With each franchise unit added to your brand, you add a certain amount of responsibilities, time and energy to your plate as a franchisor. Franchising allows for scale and you have the opportunity as a franchisor to manage a much larger amount of growth than you would with company-owned growth, but at some point, there will be a need to hire staff to support your growth. Franchise systems need staffing also and resources, you need to plan for these tiers of growth as your franchise organization expands. Don't worry!
For more information on franchise management and franchise support, contact us for a free consultation on how to franchise your business. Franchise Marketing Systems can provide guidance, support and franchise consultation needed to provide ongoing support to you when developing, implementing and franchising a business model.
FMS is a team of expert franchise consulting professionals based in Canada that provides solutions for franchise development, franchise consultation, and expansion of businesses globally.