In Franchise systems there is a rule of thumb. Twenty percent of your franchisees will be great, sixty percent will be average, and twenty percent will be underperforming locations. Then within that top twenty percent there will be a few superstars.
What makes a franchisee a superstar?
1. Use What is Provided - They use the tools the franchisor provides to their full extent. Most franchisors provide tools for their franchisees to use. These might be personalized web pages per location, advertising design, marketing calendars, discounted printing services, etc. The star knows and uses what the franchisor provides. AND if the franchisor doesn't provide something they need - they are not afraid to ask for it! Many times they find out about a new resource they had overlooked or the franchisor adds something as a result!
2. Not Afraid of Franchisor Input - They contact the franchisor about ideas they have for product or sales ideas they have. Franchisors have been in this business much longer than a franchisee. Many times a franchisee has an idea they think has never been tried - however many time it has already been done. Contacting the franchisor makes whatever idea the franchisee has - BETTER! Because if it has been done or tried it either succeeded or failed and the franchisor can guide the franchisee as to whether to throw the idea out or how to make it better. They can also point out potential problems or successes that need to be thought through before going forward.
3. Answers Franchisor Correspondence - The star reads all correspondence from the franchisor and consistantly is among the first to answer! They make decisions quickly and don't wait until the last minute to answer - many times the franchisees who don't answer correspondence and wait - never get to it as the emails, mail, just pile up and they forget. Usually missing out on opportunities or direction the franchisor has provided.
4. Plans Ahead - Franchise Systems have to plan well in advance for marketing and product introductions and promotions. The Star franchisee plans well in advance as well. They make sure that supplies are on hand when needed, and products are in place for any promotions the franchisor is offering. They also add to these offerings with ideas of their own to increase sales.
5. Works Hard - The Star Franchisees in a Franchise System realize that success takes work! Even though they bought a franchise with proven success this does not happen without work and effort on the franchisees part. Businesses do not run on their own without supervision and guidance. Even the owner who is not onsite must be aware of what is going on and the location must also know that the owner cares about the business.
6. Invests the Capital it Takes to Build the Business - Word of Mouth is the best advertising a business can get. Successful Franchisees realize this and also realize that this takes time. They are willing to put in the working capital neccessary to keep the business at its best at all times until the word is out and the business can sustain itself. A business may break even early, but it really takes about 3 years before it is entrenched and well recognized within its area of operation.
7. Uses the In Store Systems -The Star Franchisees within a Franchise System make sure that they understand how their business is to operate using the in store methods that the franchisor has provided. They are the ones that ask and ask and ask again making sure they understand how operations are to go. They are smart but realize that there is a learning curve that is shortened drastically because they bought into a franchise. They realize that the franchisor has the experience and that systems that don't make sense must be there for a reason. They ask so they understand. Customers want to visit happy and efficient operations!
Royalty Payments are well worth it - the star realizes that they could not hire an employee with the knowledge of the franchisor for what they pay in a royalty. They make sure that they get their money's worth out of this payment. Use what the franchisor provides! It is amazing that many franchisees in a system will flounder and struggle just because they don't pick up the phone, answer emails, or follow the system. They pay a royalty and complain that it is not worth it, when in reality they are not taking advantage of what the franchisor is offering them.
This article was written by the CEO of the franchise Shear Madness Haircuts for Kids. Franchise systems are not equal and many provide tools that others don't. If you are thinking about investing in a franchise - find out what those tools are. Ask other franchisees if they are using them and how valuable they are!
Are you thinking about becoming a franchisee? You may enjoy reading The Top Four Considerations when becoming a Franchisee: