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Frequently Asked Questions

Established individuals from the franchise industry share their knowledge and experience to answer some of the most common franchising questions.

Question: How would you describe the long-term relationship between a franchisor and a franchise owner?

The relationship between franchisor and franchise owner is essentially a partnership. A good franchisor understands that the success of the business depends upon the success of the franchise network – and that means the success of individual franchise owners.

While franchise owners must ultimately take responsibility for their own businesses, you should expect your franchisor to take the long term development of your business seriously. This means being prepared to invest in building brand awareness, looking for new opportunities in the marketplace, continually developing and improving the franchise service or product range and providing maximum support and encouragement for those franchise owners looking to expand.

Paul Fennell (pictured right, top) Managing Director Autosheen

Question: What factors should I consider when selecting a franchise?

When selecting a franchise, first consider your operational suitability and whether you would enjoy the work. Check whether it is accredited by the British Franchise Association (bfa) – this will give you the reassurance that the company is trading ethically and has a proven track record. Beyond that, I would look at longevity – how long have they been established? Quality of support – does it extend beyond training and initial launch period? Depending on your ambitions, you should look for a business model that lends itself to expansion and, above all, what is the market potential for the product or service you will be offering. Check how large is that customer pool is and whether there is opportunity for regular, repeat order work?

Julian Minwalla (pictured right, centre) Chief Executive Ovenclean

Question: How do franchisors assess the suitability of prospective franchise owners?

Franchising is a powerful blend of the best elements of ‘big’ and ‘small’ business. It is an effective mixture of conformity and individuality allowing the franchise owner the opportunity to build a genuine business and a capital asset while diligently following the proven systems laid down by the franchisor.

Good franchising is a marriage of two parties with different skill sets but with a common purpose – business development To this end, franchisors look for high work ethic, ambition, people skills (good communicators), willingness to follow a proven system and good organisational ability. Plus, specific skills that relate to their own particular business/industry – these may include IT, sales, marketing, education and finance.

However, in my experience the specific skills are less important than work ethic, people skills and organisational ability – as the franchisor will be training the specific skills required to run their system. If a franchise owner doesn’t have the right ‘ethos’ then no matter how good the specific skill training they will almost certainly be unsuitable for life as a franchise owner.

Nigel Toplis (pictured right, bottom) Managing Director Recognition Express