We asked a number of successful franchisors what their top tips for potential franchisees were. Here's a breakdown of their sound advice.
Jeff Raftree – Bar Sports: “The key to any franchise is support, support, support.”
Jackie Nothnagel – Calli’s Corner: “You need to work with a reputable company. Get the right advice – as a franchisor or franchisee and look for the right people when looking for a potential franchisee.”
Nigel Topliss – Computer Xplorers: “Look at a number of different stages. First of all, sit down with a blank piece of paper and work out what you like doing. Are you interested in business to business? This is not a job. When you take on a franchise it is a vocation, it’s twenty four - seven.
“The second thing is to work out how much money you’ve got. There is no point in going for a franchise that costs £300,000 when you only have £30,000. Once you’ve done that you’ll narrow the scale down.
“After that it is about comparing one franchise against another. Sit down with the franchisor and talk to existing franchisees after that. Ask the franchisees everything you want to know. ‘Do you like it?’ ‘Would you do it again?’ ‘How much money are you making?’ Ask the franchisor for their annual accounts, what support they provide, really delve into the business.”
Don't chase the dollar, chase your passion and the dollar will follow
Paul Willett – Energy Guardian: “Ask us [as franchisor] what we are going to provide you? It has got to be the right franchise for you. Ask the questions that you are probably hesitant to ask.”
John Goodheart – Energy & Carbon Management: “Ask yourself ‘what type of clientele do I want to be dealing with?’ ‘Do I want to be dealing with individuals or the B2B sector?’ Once you’ve answered that question, take a look at the franchise offers that exist in the marketplace.”
Chris Roberts – Franchise Finance: “You need to talk to other franchisees within the franchise to make sure that the franchise is generally working well, that the model is easy enough to follow, that there is a market there and a reasonable amount of customers.
“They need to do some due diligence of their own in regards to the franchise. So they need to be aware of the competition and what prices the competition is charging. They should do their own homework.”
Steve Jennerway – Just Fitted Kitchens: “You do what you know. Franchising is good for people with communication with customers or project management skills. So the ultimate franchisee for us would be someone already in the kitchen industry who understands the industry and wants to set up on their own.”
Troy Tappendon – Dream Doors: “Work hard. Spend your money wisely - on marketing. Listen to and work with your franchisor. Do not try and change the operations manual because the franchisor knows what he is doing.”
Peter Richman – Plug and Play: “This is the biggest investment you’re going to make. Not how much money it costs, but your dedication and commitment and your time. It’s important that you wake up in the morning and think that this is something that you really want to do.
“Because if it’s not something that excites you and something that you have a passion about then its ultimately going to fail, because you’re going to be the driving force behind it regardless of what franchise you buy into.”
Wayne Wright – Theobroma: “The number one thing for a franchisee to succeed is to have passion for what they sell. It’s all very well to invest money, but if you do not have passion about what you do then you shouldn’t be doing it.”
Catherine Foulkes – TheBestOf: “When you’re working for yourself you are going to be working long hours, so you need to be working in something that really excites you, otherwise it’s going to become a chore and you’re not going to be as successful as you could be. Don’t necessarily chase the dollar, chase what you’re passion is going to be, because the dollar will follow.”Tweet