Common slip-ups to avoid as a franchise entrepreneur

Check out some of the mistakes entrepreneurs and franchisors can make in managing the franchise network.

Lack of knowledge

What makes your business a success needs to be replicated in every franchise unit, so ensure you give franchisees all the tools they need to deliver what your brand promises.

You’ve built the system and it works, so keep the faith and let franchisees and your team understand exactly why it works and what your plans are for the future.

Is there a structured learning program in place? Do franchisees know where to turn to for advice?

A rigid approach

We get it, this franchise is your passion but you need to recognise that it’s not the same business it was when it started.

It’s important to embrace change – that’s what franchisors tell franchisees. So it has to work in reverse.

Don’t get stuck in the past, you need to let your brand breathe and develop, and understand when it’s time to heed advice.

Poor recruiting strategies

Should you use a broker or recruit internally? That’s a personal choice, but whichever option you choose, it’s essential to be able to clarify what your message is to the potential franchisees, and to pinpoint exactly what skills, attributes and financial clout you require from them.

It’s also good to understand there are different tools to effectively reach your audience.

In today’s multi-media, multi-touch point environment, it doesn’t make sense to rely on just one channel as a marketing tool to profile your brand and reach potential franchisees.

Bad territory allocation

There are plenty of tools available for you to use to apply a professional approach to territory or location selection. A strong system based on demographics and quantifiable measurements will serve to attract the right franchisees who can be confident that your choice of site is going to give them the best start in business.

Poor communication

Let’s be honest, we all get busy and rushed and expect other people to understand exactly what we mean when we talk or email in shortcuts.

But communication is essential in every relationship, and never more so than in a franchise network.

Lead from the front by ensuring your communications are clear, frequent and relevant using easy to access channels.

Confusing the frontline

Your hard-working BDMs, field managers or area managers are the frontline troops.

They are the individuals bringing the vision of head office to franchisees on a regular basis; and they are absorbing the feedback from franchisees – good and bad.

If they get mixed messages, it's hard for them to follow the party line convincingly.

So cut them some slack, listen to their concerns, be supportive, and understand what it takes to deliver strong franchise support.

Ignoring franchisee profitability

It used to be the elephant in the room. Now we're all talking about it. Profitability is fundamental to the success of everyone’s business.

Franchisee profitability needs to be at the heart’s centre of your business model so if there are concerns in your network that there is a flaw in the system that is restraining franchisees’ profits then you need to address this.

If individual franchisees are struggling to meet their profit goals, then it’s wise to have tools and processes in place to lead them through to a more financially rewarding result.