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New awards for industry disruptors

New awards for industry disruptors

Franchise Business School is introducing the Disruptive Franchise Awards to the franchising industry this summer

This summer, a first is happening within the UK franchise industry - the new and exciting Disruptive Franchise Awards are taking place. The awards will recognise franchise brands that successfully transform existing markets or create new ones through their disruptive strategies, products, services or approaches in their industries. In addition, they will reward disruptive franchise brands that push boundaries, develop new initiatives, are progressive and hungry to be the best they can be to future-proof their networks and have a bigger impact on a wider audience.

Awards judge Kristine Monaghan says: “These Franchising Awards are pioneering and I really can’t wait to be part of them. Awards are great for business, so throw your hat in the arena.”

Not only are these awards being held to recognise and reward disruptive entrepreneurship in the franchise industry, but also to raise funds and awareness for MQ Mental Health Research. MQ Mental Health funds top scientists to develop groundbreaking research projects which transform how we approach mental illness.

Mental wellness in the industry

A poll carried out by Franchise Business School in July 2022 revealed that 67 per cent of franchisors who took the survey suffered from mental health challenges during their journey as a franchisor. Nine per cent suffered from mental health ‘wobbles’, 23 per cent voted that franchising their business impacted their mental health and family life, and 33 per cent disclosed that they had been in some dark places in their journey in franchising.

In addition, 19 per cent of people voted ‘I am menopausal’, which adds an extra layer of mental and physical challenges for female franchisors for a significant section of their working life.

Awards organiser Jo Middleton from Franchise Business School says: “I am delighted to be hosting this new and unique event and hope it will become an annual part of the franchise industry calendar. I believe that the results of the franchisor mental wellness poll are wholly unacceptable and must be addressed. Therefore, 100 per cent of entry fees from the Disruptive Franchise Awards 2023 will be donated to MQ Mental Health Research along with any profits made.”

Support for all

There is a positive ripple effect that goes through the industry when responsible franchisors proactively encourage a supportive mental wellness culture within their organisations. According to a study carried out by Mental Health UK and iwoca, four in five small business owners are experiencing poor mental health. Franchisors who have support or training systems in place for their franchisees could be aiding 80 per cent of their networks.

The Disruptive Franchise Awards are taking place on Tuesday the 13th of June 2023 at The Oxfordshire Hotel from 9.30-13.30, with ample time for networking and nibbles afterwards. There is a golf course and spa on site for afternoon activities and in the evening there is an afterparty taking place on-site where attendees can let their hair down. The afterparty is being organised by Ed Purnell from The Franchised, who is also a judge for the awards. He says: “I’m looking for brands that challenge the norm in an innovative way. Brands that don’t just take a ‘copy and paste’ template for franchising, but brands that actually create robust and ethical franchise networks that are raising the level for others to aspire to.”

Renowned franchise professional and award judge Mark Rasche adds: “I’m flattered and excited to be a judge in these new awards. It will be great to reward businesses who are shaking things up, being a platform for doing things a bit differently and showing new potential pathways in franchising and business.”

Jen Chapman-Boffin from Cinder Ltd, who is well known in the franchise industry for providing training and qualifications in mental health to franchisors, franchisees and suppliers alike, will be speaking on the day. Jen is a fully trained and registered instructor with MHFA England, endorsed by the Department for Health. In addition, Katy Tereshchenko from Katy Louise Styling will be providing transformational messaging about how brands can integrate colour therapy into their networks. Katy has worked in TV for 15 years and is an award-winning producer having worked on TV shows such as Bafta ‘Live from the Red Carpet’ as well as with luxury brands including Chivas Regal, Felder Felder, Styloko, Josh Wood and V05.

Pioneering awards

“I have been working with the Federation of Small Businesses to educate their members on franchising and am delighted to announce that they have confirmed their support for the Disruptive Franchise Awards,” says Jo Middleton. “We look forward to welcoming them on the day and finding out more about the support and discounts that they can offer franchisors and their networks.”

The other award sponsors are Morton Michel Insurance, ThinkSmart software, Cymphony, The Best Magic Mirrors and Big Red Box PR.

Morton Michel has a long history of working with the Children’s Activities sector and provides insurance for a diverse range of services. ThinkSmart Software has been helping class-based business owners get precious time back in their busy lives for more than 10 years, and today, thousands of children’s activity franchises around the world are using one of its software packages. Cymphony provides a complete customer communications solution to enhance brand customer service. It has a team of specialists and provides outstanding support services for franchise brands. The Best Magic Mirrors franchise provides events with the Magical Mirror that takes photo booth fun to a whole new level. As you walk up to the mirror, colourful animations and voice guidance invites you to engage in a magical, interactive experience and gives you a printed photo to take home. Big Red Box PR are experts in franchise PR having worked with many different brands from startups to large multinational organisations over many years. They plan your strategy and then use press releases and magazine articles to deliver your message to the right audience.

Franchisor of Daisy First Aid and award judge Jenni Dunmann describes what she is looking for in award entries, “As a fellow industry disruptor who has challenged top-level companies within my industry, I am looking for the trailblazers, the brave game changers and the adversity heroes.”

To enter the Disruptive Franchise Awards go to disruptivefranchiseawards.com. The closing date for entries is 30 April 2023.

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