Franchisee Guidance: 10 keys to business success

In his role as Managing Director of Franchise Development Services, Roy Seaman often provides advice to aspiring franchisees. Here, he lists his ten key tips for achieving franchising success

1. Choose a franchise that you will be proud to own

The key to success is to love your work and commit yourself to becoming an outstanding success. You can never really feel totally committed to a franchise that you do not believe in.

Also, you must have total conviction of your own skills and abilities and these must never be underestimated. Set your sights high - there are many new as well as famous brands looking for people with your skills, ability and financial resources which can provide you with the returns that you seek.

2. Set clear goals

You will need to decide exactly what it is you are endeavouring to achieve. Decide on your precise goals and decide how much time, effort and money you are willing to invest to obtain your ambitions. Remember that success is measured by having measurable milestones so that you can recognise when you are proceeding in the right direction.

3. Devise an action plan

Once you have identified your goals you must devise a plan for their achievement. In business you will need more persistence, determination and will power than you have ever mustered, as well as the resilience to bounce back quickly when you hit that inevitable brick wall. Flexibility is also a key characteristic of successful franchise owners.

4. Listen to and learn from your franchisor

You are not only investing in the franchisor's brand and system, but also in the president or founder and their HQ team who will help you achieve all of the goals that you have listed.

You will need to feed your mind with new information and ideas that will help you to gather momentum and speed. Your franchisor may even advise you on audio CDs and DVDs worth buying. Your mind is a great asset and you need to invest in that regularly. It will reward you far more than the stock market!

5. Value your own time

Use your time wisely and decide what you should not be doing so that you can concentrate on working toward your goals. You should never waste a single minute of your time. Put a value on your own time - try imagining that you are worth £1,000 a day and consider whether the things you are doing are worth that amount of valuable time.

6. Associate with business leaders

Behind every successful business there is a leader who has achieved a great deal. Associate with people who are success-orientated in order to emulate their achievements and become a leader yourself. Determine who are the people who can best help you succeed and learn from them, so that one day you in turn can help others to achieve success.

7. Look after your integrity and reputation

Who you are and what you stand for will be determined by those that meet with you. By being honest with people and helping them to achieve their goals, be they staff, customers or other business owners, you will benefit in turn by the goodwill and respect you generate. Your friends and close associates are also your assets.

8. Use your latent ability and creativity

Recognise that you have more than you are currently displaying - this is not a weakness but an opportunity. Make the decision that you are going to use those enormous reserves of ability and creativity to help you succeed. Once you kindle the fire of your imagination even you will be amazed at what you are achieving. It will help you find that which is newer, better, faster and easier to make your business and your life more exciting, challenging and rewarding.

9. Focus on customer service

In franchising both you and your franchisor become the brand. The most important person then becomes your customer. In any business the customers are the most important people, to be treated with respect. Imagine each customer is going to spend £100,000 or more with you, and the wheels of your business will start to turn.

10. Work hard

In order to achieve your dreams you will need to work hard. You must never hold back, never seek that short cut and maintain your honesty at all times, otherwise you will never obtain the heights of success that you are capable of climbing to. With a dogged determination you will be able to achieve all of the satisfaction and material rewards that you have set your heart on.