Many people get to the point in their life when they are considering starting a business of their own. It’s a big step and one that should not taken lightly. When starting a business first look in the mirror, for there’s a big difference between the mind set of an employee and that of an entrepreneur.
Increasing numbers of people are opting for a franchise business model as opposed to trying to make it on their own. A quality franchise offers a proven track record of success with ongoing training and a help and support structure. So important for anyone new to business ownership.
However, the question still remains. Can I make this work and will I make a good franchisee? What does the mirror tell me?
When you consider investing in a franchise you must start with research, part of which is to be honest with yourself. What personal qualities will I be bringing to the table?
Naturally you have a certain amount of drive, or else you would never leave the relative safety of your job and career. But how much passion do you have for the product or services you plan to offer. You will face long hours and hard work, especially at the beginning (nothing new there). You may face frustration at the speed in which you can scale your business to the point where it provides you will meaningful returns. Without passion (thinly disguised as enthusiasm) you will not find it easy to face these challenges. Sure, you’ll receive help, support and encouragement from the franchise team and the other franchisees like you, but they can only light a spark that ignites the fire that’s already within you.
THE WHEEL’S FINE. NO NEED TO RE-INVENT IT
Franchisors spend time and money developing and refining their brand and their business systems. They will not be looking for someone who wants to come on board to reinvent the wheel.
So one special characteristic is that of being system-orientated with a strong leaning towards partnership mentality (think John Lewis). Understanding the franchise model is important for you get to share the brand with fellow franchisees. You will want to be supportive in protecting who the brand is perceived by others.
WAIT – HOW ABOUT CUSTOMERS!
Naturally, being able to create customer confidence and loyalty is important if you are to ensure repeat business and referrals.
Apart from feeling comfortable around people you will need some element of sales skill. Obviously the franchisor will offer help in this area but you need to feel comfortable with the ethos of sales for you will need to persuade (encourage) people to buy your products and services. Trust me, nothing sells itself. This is something often missed when people decide to turn their skills into a business of their own.
In the end, much of the approach towards starting a business is down to attitude. A positive ‘can do’ attitude is easy to adopt when things are going right but real character shows through when things don’t run so smoothly. Hey, if business was easy, no one would be looking for a job.
I have experience as an employee, of being successful in a corporate environment, of running my own business and of being part of a successful franchise operation. I know all of these things to be true.
A good franchise provides a head start and the success engine that will help you drive your business faster and with GPS navigation to wherever you want to go. You have are given the keys but you have to drive it. Here’s to your Success.
Rebecca Cross is an Award Winning Virtual PA. Her background experience working with IBM and the Wall Street Journal provides invaluable experience. She specialises in providing creative business and administration support for entrepreneurs and business owners who understand the value of working on their business, rather than in their business. She is especially looking to work with business start-ups, entrepreneurs, and professionals who travel extensively.