Do You Have What it Takes to Be Successful as a Franchise Owner?
By Steve Hockett
Have you ever wondered if you have the personality and skills to be a successful franchisee? There are over 1500 franchise companies operating in the US, each requiring a plethora of different skill sets in a franchise owner.
I've heard some companies say they have many franchisees who came from corporate downsizing, former CEOs and CFOs and such. Others claim they don't want franchisee candidates with too much structure. Some companies want a marketing and sales background and others prefer someone without preconceived ideas so they can train that person in their system, their way.
Confusing? You bet! But there are a few key characteristics that you should be aware of to determine if franchising could work for you. Are you cut out to be a successful franchise owner? Consider the following:
A successful franchisee needs good interpersonal skills. Seem obvious? Well think about this carefully. In your current and past jobs, did you really enjoy working with people?
A franchisee will need to manage employees and work to retain them. You'll have to build good-will with your customers and gain their loyalty and trust. In many cases, a franchise owner's role will be to make community connections by joining civic organizations and networking with various groups.
If you are truly a people person, you have one of the most valuable assets to successful franchise ownership.
Following a System
Many people think being your own boss requires you to be a true entrepreneur, someone who wants to take charge and challenge each step in the process.
That's simply not true for franchising. If someone has already done the work, tested the procedures and proven that a system works, a clever person will pay attention and follow that system. This person is truly focused on success.
Someone willing to listen and learn from others to avoid making mistakes will avoid many of the pitfalls of business ownership and find success sooner. That is the essence of franchising.
Willing to Ask for Help
In the same vein, a good franchisee candidate is someone who will let the franchisor help and support them. At most franchise companies, there are teams of people who will train you in every aspect of the business. There are people to call for help. There are people who will come to your place of business to show you the way. The motto of franchising is that you are in business for yourself but not by yourself. It is up to you to take the help and follow the advice. When you are successful, the franchisor is successful.
Doing Whatever it Takes
There is just no substitute for hard work, particularly during the first year. A successful franchisee is someone who is willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done. They show their employees by example. They put in whatever hours necessary to get the job done.
If you are someone who understands what it takes to be successful and have the motivation to make your business succeed, you have the cornerstone of a winning franchisee personality.
Starting a business by yourself is taking a big risk. Buying a franchise reduces the risk. In fact, successful franchisees are typically risk averse. They want to minimize their risk as much as possible and so they choose a strong franchise system with a proven track record.
If you love to take big, bold risks, franchising probably isn't for you. If you are careful and thorough in your franchise research so you know just what you are signing up for, then you have the stuff to triumph as a franchisee.
So, how many of these qualities do you have? Unlike a magazine survey on health concerns, you can't get some of the answers wrong and still be in good shape. You need all of the above attributes to consider yourself a great candidate for franchise ownership.
This new business you are considering is your business and the money you invest is your money. You'll want to have every advantage possible to make it successful. So before you begin research on a franchise company, do some soul searching about your own assets and how they fit with a franchise opportunity.
There's nothing more exciting than embarking on that road to owing your own business. Just make sure you can avoid the speed bumps along the way.
Steve Hockett is the President of
FranChoice, Inc., the premier network of franchise referral consultants in the United States. FranChoice introduces pre-screened, high-quality prospective franchisees to carefully selected franchise opportunities that best match their needs and qualifications.