Bronwyn Oliveira, Brand Manager of Maxi’s, a family restaurant chain that forms part of the Taste Holdings group, explains why making it big in the franchising industry involves more than just partnering with the right brand.
It seems easy enough. Buy a big name franchise business and sit back and watch the cash come rolling in. However, easy success can’t just be built on the back of a successful brand. From gyms to fast food to accounting services there are hundreds of franchise choices in South Africa. But we know that not all brands are created equal so how do you choose the one that’s right for you?
Research released in June 2013 by Griffiths University in Australia says a successful franchisee is younger and more educated, has lower levels of debt and has struck a good balance between work and life.
But it also states that if you don’t tick all of those boxes you can still become a successful franchisee. With hard work, by avoiding unnecessary risk, and not being afraid to ask for help, you can still make a success of your business.
Franchising is a route to financial freedom, but what you don’t know can really hurt you. There are few things as exciting or as frightening as embarking on the road to owning your own business. To help you avoid the bumps in the road, here are a five questions you should ask yourself before making the decision to change careers:
Do you find it easy to network or make connections?
Success depends on being able to make connections with other people. Considering that a franchisee manages employees and builds goodwill with customers, deliberate whether you are a suitable candidate to deal with people all day? Did you enjoy working with people at your previous career? Being a people person is most probably the biggest asset a franchisee can have to build a successful franchise.
Can you follow a franchise system?
The essence of franchising is to avoid the pitfalls of business ownership by listening and learning to avoid common mistakes and to find success sooner. A person who wants to take charge and challenge each step in a successful system is not focused on making a success of the franchise. A smart franchisee will pay attention and gain business knowledge based on best practice.
Do you find it difficult to ask for assistance?
Franchisors have teams that will train you in every aspect of the business, these people are there to help you to make a success of your business. They are just a call away so it’s up to you to ask for assistance and accept advice. The motto of franchising is you are in business for yourself but not by yourself.
Are you willing to do what it takes?
The first year of ownership will be the hardest you are ever going to work. A successful franchisee learns quickly that success is built on hard work, and on not being afraid to do what it takes to get the job done. If you understand that hard work breeds success and have to motivation to live that belief, you then have the personality to build success.
Do you avoid risk?
Consider that you are buying a franchise because it helps to decease your risk of failure and financial losses, but if big bold risks are more appealing to you than a tried and tested model, then franchising is not for you.
However, if you are careful and confident that you have chosen a franchise that appeals to you, and you’ve ticked the boxes above, you are well on you on your way to franchise success