Purchasing a Franchise is NOT Like Applying for a Job

You should treat the whole process as if you are choosing a business partner, because that’s effectively what you are doing.

At times you may feel a little intimidated by the process, particularly if formal assessment processes are involved. Avoid at all costs the temptation to exaggerate your strengths or your assets, or make yourself out to be something you are not i.e. qualifications and experience. This will only backfire on you guaranteed. You will be taking on the responsibility of running a business where you will be in total charge and responsible for what happens. A franchise is not like a job where you can just walk away if you are not achieving the results that you expected, well you could but you would lose money.

On the other side of the coin you may feel you have to quickly sign a franchise agreement because of a sense of obligation or because you feel psyched up by your thoughts and hopes of what the franchise will give you. Calm yourself down and take an object look at everything presented. If necessary take counselling / advice from preferably a business person as they will have a better understanding of business than say a family member who may have never run a business before, this does not include your spouse as your going to need their support in developing and growing the franchise. Remember buying a franchise is not like buying a sofa or washing machine. You can’t take it back if it does not work the way it was explained to you. As they say in the carpentry business, measure twice, cut once.

Why Should Your Franchisor Have a Thorough Selection Process?

Assuming that the franchise system you are looking at is based on a proven business concept with sound training and support systems, research suggests that the extent of your future success will still largely be determined by your own hard work and abilities. Your franchisor should be thus assessing your potential strengths and weakness to see how they can best help you to succeed and whether or not you should proceed with the business opportunity.

Consider some recent research conducted by Professor Lorelle Frazer from Griffith University USA, on the causes of franchise failure. She found that inadequate franchise selection procedures were a major factor in the franchisees failure. The companies selling the franchisees had poor selection procedures; allowed people to purchase a franchise who were under-prepared, under-funded, unsuited mentally or who had unrealistic expectations of what running a business was really like.

Content Of A Thorough Selection Process

Here are three methods that may be used

1. A detailed application form. These forms are often available using a secure web site. The application form should ask detailed questions about your family situation, background experience, intentions about the business and financial capability.

2. A Self –assessment questionnaire. This can provide you with insights into your approach to business, life and dealing with other people. This information can then be used to highlight strengths and possible weakness in relation to running your own business.

3. A Structured interview process. An interview should use pre-prepared questions that ask about your past experiences and focus on issues relevant to running the business. This will protect both you and the interviewer from making decisions based on emotion, gut feel or bias.

Content Of A Structured Training Programme

1. Subjects to be covered are been delivered by subject matter experts. One man training programmes will probably fall short of giving you specific and necessary information that could make all of the difference between you getting off to a quick start or floundering.

2. There is a structured training programme. Adhoc training either assumes that you know something well and this is not the level of professionalism one would expect for a franchisor. Ensure there is a structured training programme your initial success will depend upon it.

3. Good handouts within an ‘Operations Manual’ to support each training area covered. Taking reams and reams of notes means that you will not be paying attention to what is been taught.

4. Comfortable and well lit training facilities. This will enhance the learning experience and increase the level of professionalism

5. Opportunity to reflect and role play. This will help to confirm learning and proper understanding. Remember you should leave your training full of confidence and raring to go, not with doubts and questions because things either weren’t covered properly ‘rushed’ or not given the chance to practice and receive some feedback.
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