9 Steps to Picking the Best Franchising Brand
Who's the "best" company? And how do you find them? How do you determine who or what is the greatest opportunity and the ideal company to work under? Many of these titles can seem arbitrary, of course. But that's also why it's important to understand what needs to be known for your particular situation, and what matters to you as a business owner. In many cases, brands aren't "wrong," but that doesn't mean they will be a good fit, either.
Use these steps to narrow down their information and to determine which franchising brand will be the best, and an ideal fit for the long haul.
1. What do they do/sell?
Before looking up any additional information, you first have to determine what a brand does, and if that's something that you will want to do for the rest of your life. (Or at least be associated with; retirement is allowed.) In any case, you should choose a franchising brand with an industry that interests you, and in a medium you don't mind. For instance, sales, maintenance, marketing, etc.
2. What are their values?
Though you might not initially think of businesses having values, it's absolutely something they possess. Morals, ideals, views on donating to charity, family discounts or stances – all of these and more can be held by specific companies. Find a brand that aligns with your personal ideals. Without doing so, you can often find yourself in scenarios where you don't agree with those who you're working beside. Avoid this situation by, instead, opting for a brand you agree with from day one.
3. Meet with them
What better way to get to know someone than to actually spend some time with them? It's safe to say that both parties (you and the brand) will be on your best behavior. But it's also far easier to feel others out while meeting in person. Schedule a meeting to ask questions, learn more about the company, or just to get an impression on the folks in charge. No matter what you're looking to find out, you'll walk away with more information and a feeling about the brand, whether it be good or bad.
4. Ask around
Check out online reviews, ask other franchisees, etc. Dig well into the Internet in order to read what others are saying about working with the brand. This will give you a wider view, even if you can't meet with each of these folks in person.
5. What's required?
How much money is needed to get started? What requirements exist for working with the brand? It's likely that you won't need to sign over anything crazy – but it's good to know what you're getting into, and what type of financial situation you're getting into, before you go too deep.
6. What policies are in place?
At some point or another, it's likely that something will go wrong. A building code violation, an unhappy customer, a backorder on important goods – the possibilities are endless. And though they're unlikely, they're also inevitable. Something will go wrong, eventually. Ask potential brands what they do during such an event, and how they help prevent them in the first place. This will help give you peace of mind that you've picked the right company … and that they have your back in the event of a "situation."
7. What's your gut telling you?
In all seriousness, what does your gut feeling have to say about the situation? Deep down, you know what's right and what feels forced. Just because something is exciting doesn't mean it will work itself out, either. Listen to what your inner self is telling you, and use that information when making your final decision.
8. Who has rules and who's offering creativity?
Some franchise brands will have strict rules that must be followed. Others allow quite a bit more freedom, so long as certain requirements are met. Decide which option sounds better to choose your ideal brand. It's a simple step, but will allow you to follow guidelines, if that's your style – or to stay far more unique without overstepping your boundaries, should that be your particular cup of tea.
9. Who meets the most of your criteria?
Within all of the above, and any other requirements (or wants) you might have for your potential franchising brand, who checks the most boxes? What brand looks as though it will provide more than the rest? Of course, there are always "deal breakers," but more often than not, companies who have several of your wants can become a good fit.
In order to find your franchising brand, look at these points of focus. They can allow you to locate the best fit, and to find a long-term career with a brand you will enjoy.