By Henri Chew
It’s that time of the year where we get to relax, take some time off from the day to day work routine and spend time with our loved ones. It’s also that time of the year where we reflect back on the work year that’s been and look ahead to see if we want to do a “control, alt, delete, repeat”. As early January kicks in and we look towards the working year, thoughts of being self employed and being one’s own boss creep into our mindset. Do we really want to work for the same manager again? Why wouldn’t we want to be our own boss instead and not have to answer to someone whom we don’t necessarily respect?
These thoughts are real and many people take the plunge into business ownership this way. Buying a franchise style business may be a safe way into business ownership. The franchised business offers established business operation systems, instant brand recognition and a marketing plan to name a few. These factors certainly promote the safe pathway entry into the business world and transition from employee to business proprietor.
However, is this always the case?
People wanting to set up their own business generally have firm views and opinions as they want to run their business. This may be because they have been subject to managers’ directions which have not necessarily been the best directions for business operations. If given the opportunity, these people want to express and apply their entrepreneurial independence but were simply unable to in an employed situation. Being a business owner would unlock the entrepreneurial independence.
Can they do this as business owners of a franchised style business? Maybe. It’s not always that simple. Some franchised business models promote entrepreneurial independence and business creative freedom. However, others are highly controlled and very few liberties can be taken. In general, one needs to accept that any franchised business comes with a set of control rules that hamper to a degree entrepreneurial independence. It is after all the reason why would be business owners are gravitated to that style of business yet not many appreciate the degree of control that is essentially the flip side of the same coin.
So where to?
Are all franchised businesses operated under a control freak franchisor model? That is certainly not the case. However, extensive due diligence needs to be undertaken prior to signing on the dotted line. Certain types of businesses within the franchise model may suit certain individuals and all options need to be explored. It is important to have conversations with existing franchisees to glean from them their experience being part of the model. Last but not least, surround oneself with trusted advisers who have obligations to look after one’s best interests.
Over many years of practice, Henri has worked with many prospective franchisees and franchisors in all different market sectors and is ready to work with you in relation to your franchise business needs.