If you are thinking about owning a franchise, there are many skills and experiences that will lead to positive outcomes. The lures of small-business ownership are compelling; autonomy, control, and influence are yours. There is an opportunity to make a lot of money.
Yet there are other considerations to factor into your decision. You need to think about your talents, your interests, your motivations, and your aspirations. Taking all these factors into consideration will help you make the right decision about the type of franchise to choose.
Here’s why investment in a franchise is about more than money.
What Does It Mean to Own a Franchise?
When you run your own franchise, you have an extraordinary opportunity to bring a valued and needed good or service to an area. In doing so, you will be responsible for hiring, training, and motivating employees. You will need to have sound financial skills to manage the investment you have made, meet your payroll and franchisor obligations, and grow your revenue while keeping expenses low. You will need operational expertise that lets you solve problems, come up with viable solutions, and be creative in your work.
Franchise ownership often means long hours, especially at the beginning. It also means having the opportunity to shape a business, watch it grow from the beginning, and reap the rewards of all your hard work with a degree of satisfaction and accomplishment you may never have felt before.
It is heady stuff, and all the more reason to make sure you have answered some key questions before you decide to embrace a franchise opportunity.
What Are Your Key Abilities?
Opening a franchise means you will draw on many skills, including some you have not had to use before in business. Here are some self-evaluation questions to help you decide what type of franchise to purchase.
- What talents or specialized knowledge have you acquired over your lifetime? Think about work and non-work situations and skills.
- Do you have technical skills that would be needed in the business you want to purchase?
- Have you run or owned a business before?
- Do you have accounting or bookkeeping abilities, computer expertise, or other knowledge? If not, can you obtain it before you acquire a franchise?
- What is your work history? What did you learn?
What Are Your Goals?
Knowing where you want to go and what you want to achieve is essential when embarking on a major business endeavor. Having a clear idea of the outcomes allows you to plan accordingly and choose wisely. Consider the following:
- Is there a field in which you want to work?
- Are you comfortable with sales?
- Do you want to offer a service?
- How many hours each week do you expect and want to work?
- Do you like managing people? Will you operate the business yourself or hire a manager?
- What level of annual income do you and your family require?
- Is the franchise your family’s primary business income source?
- Are you looking to own one franchise or multiple outlets?
How Do You Work Best?
Some franchises are very public-facing, with storefronts, walk-in customers, and on-site sales. Others are more one-on-one focused, delivering a service (or hiring others to do so). Knowing how you work and interact with others will help you decide the kind of business for you. Here are some questions to consider:
- Are you extroverted or introverted?
- Are you better in group situations or one-on-one interactions?
- Are you organized or do you need help keeping things tidy? (Decluttering Your Business and How to Keep It Clean, Franchising World, November 2016, pages 36-38)
- Do you prefer to work with lots of other people, a small team, or by yourself?
- Are you comfortable with the legal requirements related to managing others? (8 HR Resolutions for 2017 and How to Keep Them, Franchising World, December 2016, pages 58-59)
Franchising is an exceptional opportunity. Benetrends knows how to help entrepreneurs finance a small business. Benetrends pioneered the use of 401(k) rollovers to provide needed start-up funding to purchase and launch a franchise. To learn more about how Benetrends can help you create the corporate structure, retirement plans, and capital to launch you on the road to success, watch the webinar: How To Use Your Retirement Funds To Buy A Franchise Or Business.