The route to success will always begin with you, Cathryn Hayes advises
Is franchising right for me? This is a question that requires plenty of thought and will lead to a number of additional areas you’ll need to consider. Buying a franchise is a big step, so don’t rush to make a quick decision.
In fact, before you start looking at whether franchising is right for you, it’s worth turning the question round and asking: “Am I right for franchising?”
There are a wide range of franchises available across nearly all business sectors, so there really is something for everyone. Franchising brings a structure of training, support and know-how to help increase your chances of success, provided of course you pick the right one.
But whether this will work for you depends on your ambitions, skills and personality, as much as anything else.
If you want to have complete freedom to operate and wouldn’t take kindly to being constrained in any way or being told what to do, franchising is almost certainly not going to work for you.
A franchisor is trusting you with its brand and know-how in order to admit you to its network. In return, you’ll need to abide by the ‘rules of the club’ by working within the franchise framework and brand guidelines, without having the autonomy to make some of the bigger decisions yourself.
At the other end of the scale, if what you’re looking for is a job where you have a regular income to rely on and can sit back and watch your business grow without much risk or effort, franchising is almost defi nitely not for you.
Running your own business, whether as a franchisee or independently, is always going to involve hard work and lots of commitment in order to make it a success.
So before you start choosing which franchise to buy, you should spend plenty of time thinking about your own skills and ambitions, making sure you’re focused on the type of franchise you want to run.
In addition, It’s important that you’re realistic about the investment level you can afford and how much money you have available as initial capital.
Be honest with yourself about your stamina levels, priorities, plus thoughts about risk, sales and stress, as well as your attitude to employing staff. Examine your mindset and challenge some of your own thoughts before you start talking to franchisors.
To help you consider some of the aspects you might not have thought about, the British Franchise Association off ers a free training course, the Prospect Franchisee Certifi cate, which you can work through at your own pace. Visit bfa. trainme.tv for more information.
There are lots of factors involved in growing a successful business and franchising can undoubtedly help and support you to do so. But the route to success will always begin with you.
Cathryn Hayes is franchise director at Revive! Auto Innovations and has over 20 years of franchising experience as head of franchising at HSBC and at the British Franchise Association.
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