Look for these habits to help you determine if a franchise is right for you.
Not all franchisors are created equal. There are great ones and there are others who are short-sighted. When performing your due diligence, you want to make sure that the franchise you are investing is going to be a good fit, now and into the future. This means a franchise needs to have developed certain habits to keep them healthy and growing sustainably for years to come. Here are some habits to look for when considering a franchise.
- The brand has a strong identity, mission statement, and set of core values. When these are clearly defined and articulated, it connects franchisees and employees to the brand promise, and they are more committed to delivering the best customer experience possible. The best way a brand can create long term impressions and engagement with customers is to deliver a consistent customer experience. What foundation has the franchise laid for their system to be successfully and consistently executed?
- A clear commitment to the individual franchises as well as the franchise system as a whole. In addition to the support, training, and resources a franchise makes available to its individual franchisees, it is important to look at how well the brand is looking out for the health of the entire system. Do they encourage a team culture within their network? How do they help connect franchisees with each other? Is there uniformity across the network?
- A thorough selection process that is focused on recruiting and retaining high quality franchisees. When you engage with the recruiting team, are they giving you a sales pitch or are they interviewing you to determine fit? Do you sense a willingness to say “no” to marginal candidates? When a franchise is too eager to make a sale and allow candidates that are below par they create system-wide challenges in the future. The process should be about determining if the candidate and the franchise are a good mutual fit and not just about collecting a franchise fee or future royalty check.
- You are treated with honesty and transparency. Are they upfront about the challenges that you may face? Do they downplay the amount of work and dedication required? Is financial and other vital info easily accessible? In return for their franchise fees and royalties, do franchisees feel the brand delivers on the support and resources they promise? How has the brand handled conflict with franchisees? Do they feel they are treated fairly?
- Good communication and collaboration. Does the brand value its relationship with its franchisees? Is there a channel for productive two-way dialogue between the brand and its franchisees, such as an advisory committee? How does the brand engage and tap into the power of their network to make the brand better?
When a brand demonstrates these five characteristics, it is a good sign that they are committed to creating a positive and growth-oriented brand culture, one you can leverage for your own business success.