In this two-part article we are going to focus on two different types of tips, in part one we focus on tips on finding and deciding on a franchise, and very importantly, in part two, we are going to be looking at tips on running a franchise. Here is part one:
Have an open mind – When seeking a franchise you may have specific ideas about the industry or service you would like to enter, even so it really pays to have an open mind. Often there will be more than one opportunity in your preferred sector, so by all means start here, but look also at other opportunities that fit the skill set you have, the financial and time commitment level you are looking for, you may also look at opportunities slightly beyond the obvious that offer the training and support you need to enter something new.
Look around – There are so many placed to look, but simply Googling can be a minefield, we suggest visiting the bfa website, each member listed will have the credentials and franchise experience you can trust, the British Franchise Association are the most credible directory source of franchise opportunities in the UK (we are on there of course), as well as being a fabulous resource for those considering franchising.
Ask questions – Franchisors should all welcome inquisitive potential franchisees, make a list of all the things you want to know before a call or meeting to allow your queries, thoughts and concerns to be voiced and discussed. We at Just Shutters like our potential franchisees to talk to us, our staff and existing franchisees, ensuring we are a match for them and they are for us. On the flip side of this always approach any franchisor that does not openly welcome questions with caution.
Look at the figures – if you are new to the business world, eye-catching turnover figures can sound appealing, but try to get the franchisor to direct these for you further so you can see what the profits and bottom lines are, also whether these take into consideration your renumeration/salary.
Meet the people – Not only is choosing a franchise about finding one that you think will make money, while this is undoubtedly a large part of it, you have to feel comfortable working with the people. Do you share the same values, as the relationship progresses you will be expecting support and their experience to guide you, are they ‘the experts’ you want to be working with?
Brand matching – Again this comes down to a matched ethos and belief in the product or service, if you are comfortable with the brand and feel an affinity it will be much easier to sell, it will also be easier for you to grow your business and keep interest if you feel passionately about what you are doing.
Lifestyle matching – Does the franchise opportunity give you the lifestyle promises you want? Discuss this with the franchisor – discuss your goals and aspirations, are you looking for a 9-5, a 24/7 or a seasonal position, do you want to retire to the med in 3 years or build something you can pass on to your children. These factors will undoubtedly affect your business and you need to be upfront with a franchisor, and they with you, to ensure you are right for one another.
Look at finance options – you can discuss this with the franchisor, you will need to know how much the initial fee is and also any expected ongoing costs not accounted for in this fee, after this you may be looking at obtaining funding from a bank, most franchises should be able to offer some advice or introduce you to likely lenders, it is far easier financing a franchise than a start-up, as franchisors have a track record and proven model.
Read the fine print – this is essential, franchise contracts, however ‘standard’ will have terms and conditions you may not have discussed or even thought about, be clear, be thorough and voice any concerns to the franchisor.
We hope at this point you will be excitedly taking the steps towards securing a franchise of your very own, please also see part 2 of this article published soon. Until then, please take a look at our franchise opportunity, fill in the form on this page or call us on 01202 233744 for more details.