The Minuteman Press Review – May 2012

What you Can Expect from a Franchise

While it’s your job to work hard and make your business a success, your franchisor has a certain obligation to help along the way. Here are 10 things to consider when researching different franchises.

  1. A proven system of success. If the franchisor’s system isn’t strong and proven to work, don’t invest in it. Why let your franchise fees fund their learning process?
  2. A commitment to quality products and services. Stay away from companies that are more interested in selling franchises than they are in supporting their system and providing quality goods.
  3. Provides information before you buy. A franchisor is limited by law, under disclosure documents, as to what they can and cannot say. Be sure to do your due diligence prior to signing any documents. Proper research is an essential element in making an informed decision.
  4. A vision you believe in. You should like your franchisor and their vision should be compatible with your own. You need to feel comfortable with the direction they will take in the future. Businesses change all the time, so pick a franchisor with a vision you can endorse.
  5. A recognizable name. It is best to select a franchisor with a well-known trademark to maximize your potential for success. There may be greater growth potential with a newer franchisor, but a greater risk of failure may go with it.
  6. A fair agreement. Many franchise agreements favor the franchisor, but your rights must be protected at the same time. Find a franchise that recognizes your equity rights in the business that you will work hard to create.
  7. Excellent training. Find a franchisor with a commitment to long term training. Training should be low cost or free, as part of your agreement. Your franchisor should also make frequent visits to your location to get a “feel” for your area, which will enable them to tailor their assistance to your unique needs.
  8. Strong resources. Make sure your franchisor has the resources to help make you successful Will they come up with ways to help you increase sales? Can they help you sell your franchise when the time comes to retire? A strong home office is also important. Does your franchisor have the means to do their job properly? If a franchisor does not have the resources to gain market penetration or build a brand name, stay away.
  9. Be Selective. Each franchisee is a reflection of the overall system. Steer clear of a franchisor that will sell to anyone with the right amount of money. Your reputation is on the line if weak links in the system affect your business.
  10. Franchisee satisfaction. Speak with several different franchise owners. Are most of the franchisees in the system happy with their choice? Are they successful? Would they recommend the business to others? Research a variety of franchises to ensure that you get the true, overall picture of the opportunity.

Selecting a franchise is not a spur of the moment decision; it takes time and consideration to find the right fit for your needs. Although you’re excited about the prospect of owning a business, slow down and really get to know yourself before moving forward with any franchise opportunity. The time you spend now is a small investment in your future success.