These powerful qualities can help you replicate the same results as some of the top performers in the industry
When you meet enough top-ranked franchisees across many industries and brands, you see what they have in common. My work has allowed me to do just that.
For more than a decade, I was a multi-unit franchisee with Edible Arrangements. For many years since I’ve been speaking and coaching in the franchise industry. Before every franchise presentation, I interview each brand’s highest performers and I’ve identified the common traits that enable them to become ‘wealthy franchisees’.
To be ‘wealthy’ as a franchisee means you meet three criteria.
The most obvious is good income. That’s relative to your investment, your expectations and where you live. But generally speaking, given what you’ve put into the business, you’re getting good return on investment.
The second criterion is being in control of your time. Two franchisees might earn the same income, but if one does it working 20 hours per week and the other works 80 they’re not equals.
Time is precious. You’re only going to have less of it. Wealthy franchisees are not slaves to their business. They travel, they’re home for dinner and they have time to run additional businesses - if they choose.
The third criterion is quality of life. Your business should enhance the way you live, not just by how much you earn, but by how your time is spent and how it makes you feel.
You should enjoy what you do with minimal stress and maximum fulfilment.
A well-run franchise can allow its owner to check all three boxes. I meet these people all the time.
But their success is by design. And they have a lot more going for them than a decent location, consistent marketing and hard work.
Those things aren’t the secret to success; they’re the prerequisite. What gives wealthy franchisees their edge are three, powerful behaviours that you can replicate to achieve the same results.
1. Wealthy franchisees keep a clear head
A franchise isn’t just a business - it’s a lifestyle. That means you don’t just run the business, you feel it. It’s an emotional journey. The ups, downs, payoffs and problems - they mess with your head. Wealthy franchisees feel the same emotions as their peers, but they’re experts at keeping their heads clear and their emotions in check.
I remember one Edible Arrangements franchisee telling me he didn’t want us to run television commercials.
He explained: “There are already too many Edible Arrangements franchises in our city. If we advertise, it’ll make more people want to open locations. There’ll be more competition.”
His idea for marketing our brand was to keep it a secret. His opinion wasn’t based on data. He was driven by fear.
When you’ve quit your job, taken out loans and invested your money in a business, you have a lot on the line. The stakes are high. It’s easy to succumb to your emotions. That leads to bad decisions. Wealthy franchisees monitor their thoughts to ensure every decision is rational and driven by data.
Many I talk to have habits to manage their heads. Some meditate. Others take walks. Some organise peer groups to talk through business issues and get other perspectives. They all have their own way to get there, but all of them operate not from negativity, nor from positivity, but from a point of clarity.
2. They stick to the system
The most successful franchisees are not creative. In buying a franchise, they’ve outsourced the innovation. They’ve paid their franchisor to do the research, development and testing. As franchisees, their job is to execute.
Many franchise owners try to outsmart the system and suffer for it. They believe, based on their background or local perspective, that they know better than their corporate team. They deviate from company standards. Not only does this weaken the brand - franchises are based on consistency - but it increases their exposure to risk.
When you buy a franchise, you’re investing in a proven concept managed by an experienced team with the most information. They’ve tested and replicated the system in a variety of markets. They’ve proven the concept, which reduces the risk. Deviating from their system subjects you to the very risk you paid to mitigate. I’ve never met a franchisee who climbed to the top by going rogue.
When wealthy franchisees have new ideas or concerns, they collaborate with the corporate office to determine what’s best for the entire network. They understand they’re part of something larger than their own location. As the brand improves, that not only helps their location, but it increases its value.
3. They use their business to improve the lives of everyone it touches
There’s a boomerang effect of putting value out into the world. Wealthy franchisees are deliberate about making a positive impact on everyone and that comes back to improve their business.
First, they don’t just manage employees. They actively develop team members into leaders. They give them skills. They give them inspiration.
They instil in them a sense of purpose. They ensure employees feel forward progress in their own personal growth.
These benefits engage employees more effectively than mere financial compensation. Growth leads to motivation and loyalty. And that leads to better customer service.
Wealthy franchisees are obsessed with the customer experience. They don’t just provide products, services or solutions. They use the transaction to emotionally elevate people. They understand that what the customer gets matters less than how the customer feels. Making people feel good leads to better reviews, more word-of-mouth and more repeat business.
Wealthy franchisees also serve their communities. They don’t wait to ‘give back’. They give first. They volunteer. They donate products and services. They sponsor causes. They’re out there in the community making a difference. That goodwill feeds their soul and ultimately grows their business.
Wealthy franchisees aren’t extraordinary people. They’re normal people executing extraordinarily well. And you can be among them. It requires a clear head, devotion to the proven system and a desire to improve others’ lives. If you own a franchise, doing these three things might be the best way to improve your own.
Scott Greenberg speaks, coaches and writes about the franchise industry and is the author of The Wealthy Franchisee: Game-Changing Steps to Becoming A Thriving Franchise Superstar.