Aid to recruitment - Appointing franchise owners

Recruiting the right franchise owners is integral to the success of any franchised business and is not the same as selling a franchise. FDS Consultant Gary Rigby looks at the processes franchisors must go through in order to identify and recruit the right person to take a business forward.

The Ideal Franchise Owner

Typically, a franchisor will have a number of key points that an investor must possess in order to be successful within that business – it is vital to identify the roles that a new franchise owner will take on and qualify whether any new candidate is capable of fulfilling the role effectively.

Foundational Franchise Owners

There are a number of ways to appoint foundational franchise owners. Allowances need to be made for the inaugural investors in any franchise but it should also be remembered that what you do for one individual you will be required to do for others within the network. Arguably, foundational franchise owners have greater support from the franchisor because without successful franchise owners, it would be difficult to sell franchises.

No Experience Required?

Typically the view is that franchisors will provide all the necessary training, therefore having experience within the sector is not required. There is also a view, in some franchising circles, that franchise owners with experience in a particular sector come with in-built views and prejudices, often some franchisors politely decline to accept franchise owners within the sector.

The Necessary Capital

It goes without saying that potential franchise owners need to have the initial money to purchase the franchise package, together with funds for premises, vehicle or specialised equipment. Often this can be funded from external sources, such as banks or franchise funding companies. Typically, franchisors in a start-up situation with approval from major franchise lending banks would offer a 50 per cent loan in a start-up and 70 per cent in an established and proven franchise business.

Commitment

The franchise owner must be enthusiastic enough to withstand the pressures of running his or her own business and, of course, be in good health. When you start a business, the hours will be long and typically unsociable and it will require the commitment of the franchise owner to make the business succeed.

An Independent Thinker

Franchisors are looking for self-starters, people that have the desire to run and operate their own business and are able to make decisions on a daily basis. Equally, the franchise owner must be able to work within the parameters of the proven franchise business, systems and methodology to be successful.

Partner’s Involvement and Support

When a franchise owner considers purchasing a franchise business, there is often a significant financial commitment. In a partnership, it is essential that the franchisor canvases the opinion of the spouse/partner because without this full commitment, both in time given and financially, it is unlikely that the business will be a success. Often franchisors will invite the spouse/partner along to the initial meeting, rather than the potential franchise owner relaying the information at a later date.

The Franchisor/Franchise Owner Relationship

Finally, people buy from people. The relationship between the franchisor and franchise owner will hopefully be a long and fruitful partnership as each entity is mutually dependent upon this relationship.

All franchise owners must be considered on their individual merits but the ultimate decision to appoint a franchise owner must be made by the franchisor. The process itself should be selective, cautious and deliberate in its process allowing the necessary time to gather all the relevant information.