Franchising is all about the system and processes developed by a franchisor and to what extent franchisees follow them.
If it’s a good franchise there will be a process for just about everything, from the way the product is delivered to the way the business is marketed and sales made.
When I explain this to people who are thinking about franchising sometimes I see eyes glaze over and heads begin to nod. If this happens, almost invariably, it’s followed by a sentence something like this: ‘But isn’t that terribly restrictive, just following a system?’
Well, to be entirely frank, no!
You see, a franchise system is just like any other process. If you put raw materials in one end, turn the handle for a bit, you’ll get a predicable end result out the other end. Think of it like a production unit for producing electronic components. The satisfaction comes not from turning the handle (i.e. doing the work), but from managing the system to perfection; continually improving the way things are done until the whole operation is seamless.
The next question I usually get is something like: ‘But isn’t that just like dumbing down?’ Notice how all these questions begin with the word ‘But’?
Once again, the answer is no!
I was talking to a guy a while ago who has just joined a franchise. He was formerly a senior guy in a process led business… and when I say senior, I mean right at the top. Clearly, highly intelligent and well experienced. If I was going to get challenges from anyone about ‘doing things his way’ it would be from him, who’s been there done it and not only got the T-shirt, but the trousers as well.
Not a bit of it.
As I was explaining the operation his questions were not about the system (although he did insist on knowing why the system was put together in that way), rather they were about how best to manage the system for best results.
It was his intention to follow the system to the letter and he was going to get his enjoyment from implementing the perfect machine… and he had a plan to do it.
Get IT and telephony sorted
Implement his marketing plan
Recruit support staff
All in line with the system.
The perfect franchisee?