Franchising Behind the Scene: What's it Really Like?
If you're considering franchising, chances are you have several questions as to what will or won't take place when signing on for the job. You might wonder about logistics, day-to-day dealings, or simply what it's like to receive a contract, no matter what brand you end up choosing to work with. Luckily, there are plenty of veterans who can help explain the process and tell us what it's like to work as a franchisee.
Besides them, the brand themselves are also there to share and explain; they're not trying to "trick" you, but rather to prepare you as much as possible. That way you're ready to take on your job with gusto, and without the element of surprise.
So, what is it really like?
There are rules and contracts, of course, but each one is in place to help you succeed. Before you ever even think of opening your doors, you'll have a solid understanding of said expectations. Franchising brands want you to be as informed as possible so that you can better succeed from day one. This includes knowing what's expected, memorizing store policies, and putting your best work ethic forward at all times.
In order to get you there, you will receive a fair amount of coaching (so long as it's welcome). You'll talk with an advisor (or maybe several of them) who will teach you about the brand and the industry, as well as franchising itself. It's likely that this person will be your go-to guy or gal, allowing you to call or email them at all times with any questions you might have.
Certain brands will even send employees to work in-house while you get a feel for the experience. Either for a designated amount of time, or until you feel ready, these trained pros will bring their best franchising skills to get you up and running as efficiently as possible.
Depending on the brand you sign with, you may or may not attend some franchisee training before opening up shop. They can vary greatly – from traveling seminars and work intensives, to single-day sessions within driving distance, to those that allow you to call in or "attend" online. No matter the setup, however, they're designed to teach you more about the brand, and how to handle your responsibilities as an owner.
They might even get into more details, such as understanding your particular market, or how to advertise based on your location, and more. The take-aways, however, will allow you to know more about your brand, and how to run a branch toward profitability and growing success.
Getting Thrown to the Wolves
If you think you'll be thrown into a business setting without resources, you won't. Brands don't want their franchisees to feel threatened or under prepared. They want them to grow and become profitable as quickly as possible. It's not a sink or swim type of matter; you won't be told to figure it out on your own. Unlike movies with terrible bosses, everyone will help you learn as much as possible. Whether it's in person or through the phone, the franchise is on your side.
Finally, it's time to accept that you'll be attending a fair amount of meetings. Whether or not you're a "meeting person," it's simply part of the job. Initially, you'll be learning about the brand, what's required of you, and more. Then, later on, you can begin to have a more active role by asking questions, showing your plans, and so on. This is a simple progression that teaches you to grow through a company, even from your beginning research stages.
With a combination of coaching, hands-on learning, real-world experience, and the ability to ask when it's needed, you're likely to see a great deal of franchising success. And while every brand is different, it's a combination of these factors that forms you into an insider, and one who is prevalent within the franchising company.