Expert advice from Dream Doors’ recruitment team
Your strengths/role in the business
The first step to deciding which franchise is best for you is selfevaluation. You need to find out what you want from your business and work out exactly how you can achieve it. For example, would you rather be an investor who hires staff to manage the business on a day-to-day basis or a hands-on operator who directly monitors and runs the business? Be honest with yourself and determine how best you can deploy your skills and experiences.
Learn about franchising
With our nation in a state of perpetual growth, it’s only natural that the franchising world is becoming bigger and bigger as time moves on. Obviously, the best businesses would attempt to branch out and extend their reach across many locations. And that’s exactly what franchising does. It’s pretty simple to keep up to date with what’s occurring within the world of franchising. There are magazines like this to subscribe to, several franchise shows and myriad online resources. Keep an eye on which franchises are receiving awards and commendations, as this is a good indicator of their worth.
Unfortunately, the perfect business won’t just fall into your lap, so you’ll have to conduct your own research to discover it. The more work you do at this stage, the better prepared you are for the opportunity when it arises.
You’ll need to have a clear idea of what money is available to you and how it can be spent. And never enter into a business underfunded.
You should start researching the world of finance as soon as possible. With the tremors of Brexit and various other changes being felt around the country, it’s a necessity to be up to date and knowledgeable about what level of funds are available to you.
The good news, though, is that bank managers tend to like franchise businesses, as they have a much higher success rate than independent start-ups.
Study the business world
You certainly don’t need to be Sir Alan Sugar, but some business knowledge is important when evaluating, and then running, a franchise.
As owner and manager, you’ll need to be mindful of many aspects of the business world, such as marketing, sales, customer service and PR. Doing a little research and having at least some basic knowledge in all these areas can go a long way towards delivering a successful start to your business.
Take a look at all the potential business prospects and consider whether they’d continue to thrive if the economy began to take a turn for the worst.
Think of staple services we’ve come to expect and those that are seen as a necessity. You may want to consider the prime customer demographic too.
That certainly helped us at Dream Doors, where our kitchen refurbishments appeal to an older demographic - one that was less affected by the economic downturn - and helped us treble brand turnover during the recession.
Individual franchise research
Once you’ve exhausted all the online and offline resources, attempt to create a list of potential businesses that interest you. And then try to narrow down the list even further.
You can’t realistically speak to every franchise out there, but you can enter into healthy discussions with a few that interest you.
Remember to think back to your selfevaluation. Does this company fit your skills and expectations? Make sure to consider factors such as location, as you don’t want to waste time on a franchise that has no available territories near to you.
That said, since Dream Doors is a mature brand, we often have resale opportunities and encourage enquiries from any area of the UK.
Start requesting basic franchise information from the selected companies. If the company appears to be what you’re looking for, do your due diligence and request further information - anything you can acquire to get a feel for the business.
Bear in mind the franchisor will also be assessing you, as no respectable company would furnish every candidate with everything, so you need to try to impress them and stand out as the best candidate for their franchise.
Further sensitive information will typically be passed on once both parties feel it’s in their mutual interest.
Something you enjoy
Arguably, this is the most important tip of all. A franchise is a major career move involving a significant investment in time, money and work, so it’s vital you enjoy the time you will be putting in.
If you don’t care about your business, you won’t succeed, so always strive to choose a business that interests you at a personal level.
Don’t rush into signing anything if you’re uncertain, as this could end up in serious regret - both for the company and yourself.
Good reputation/high integrity business models
You can’t always trust a company’s words concerning itself, so you need to be certain the franchise is respectable and has a high standard of practice.
A good way of judging a company’s reputation from an objective view would be their user reviews. A prime example of this is Dream Doors’ high scores on Checkatrade. Websites like this offer an accurate representation of the quality of service provided.
Your final decision
When making your final decision, be sure to consider all the factors previously mentioned. It’s crucial your decision is made for all the right reasons.
Check the franchise does all of the following:
- Matches your current financial situation and resources.
- Makes use of your personal skills and challenges you.
- Is recession proof and a staple service.
- Has happy and contented franchisees, willing to stay for many years.
- Lets you be the boss that you want to be.
- Employs enthusiastic and experienced staff members, who will help you on the road to success.