You're probably well on your way to owning a franchise by now, but there's still some basic franchise information that needs to be covered before you jump in with both feet. Franchising is hard work and many fail, but those who succeed usually do so with flying colors. Read on for the Top 10 tips for successful franchising:
- Begin at the beginning and carefully plan your finances. Consider how much money you have to invest. More importantly, how much can you afford to lose? Have a financial cushion to live on while starting up your business.
- Evaluate your talents and choose a franchise based on your ability. Learning additional skills can be difficult when you're caught up in the hustle-bustle of starting a new business.
- Listen to the franchisor! Keep your employees in uniform. Don't change procedure. Surprisingly, a lot of franchisees don't listen and risk terminating their agreements, even losing their business. Build a relationship with your franchisor.
- Set realistic goals. Do you expect to make a certain level of income? Where do you see yourself going with this franchise? Do you aspire to expand your franchise business opportunity?
- Community commitment. Your customers come from the community, so promote your franchise's name. Sponsor something in the public eye, from high school team dinners to Little League.
- Be a team player within your franchise community. Take advantage of the fact that you are one in a sea of many; other franchisees can be full of helpful franchise information.
- A good customer base is mandatory to the success of any business; this is especially true in franchising. Get to know your regular customers. In the somewhat impersonal world of franchises, every bit of familiarity helps.
- Hire well; employees can make or break a franchise. High schools, local job boards, even your customers can provide a terrific staff.
- Take the process one step at a time. Although you may be excited, patience is the name of the game. Don't expect to jump straight from signing the contract to cutting the ribbon on your grand opening.
- And most importantly? Be enthusiastic. You're selling a recognized brand with a proven operating system, and you have support to back you up. The door will open if you only turn the key. To quote Dr. Seuss, "Oh, the places you will go!"