Prospective franchisors ask us all the time: What is the most important competitive advantage: Cost, Product, Niche? I believing achieving competency is the most important competitive advantage. Competence is the only path to excellence, and it’s really excellence that is the ultimate competitive edge. A franchise is often called an ordinary business run extraordinarily. Here are the essential elements needed to run your business extraordinarily.
The path to competence (Competitive Advantage):
Knowledge: Learn and know the best practice of your industry.
Education: Learn how to execute best practices. That will take talent, and skills to hone that talent.
Hire the best possible: By understanding the best is the best way to identify skills, talent and excellence. Don’t take the word or paper of the have them show you. For example- bring a line cook into the kitchen and have him/her create a simple dish
Train: Keep up skills and knowledge- keeping updated will keep your franchise competitive.
On-going improvement: Setting goals without the ability to achieve is useless. Make sure you are giving the tools to succeed. “We’ve always done it this way” is unacceptable.
Awards and Recognition: Strive to be the best and let the world know. The only way to win is to have the drive, talent, skill, knowledge to WIN.
Competency is not “the minimum level, it’s the maximum level”. Excellence is achieved by the competent with drive. Be aware of the level of excellence and keep raising the bar. The bar is always going to be raised, those with competency have the ability to keep up. Once competency is your competitive edge, then excellence will be easier to achieve.
It is the franchisors responsibility to offer three things: growing the systems, support and training. Being conscience that your training is part of your obligation, and using that path to competency, will lead to excellence and become your franchises competitive advantage.