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Teamwork is Key on How to Make Your Franchise Successful

 

Teamwork and How to Make Your Franchise Successful

Through my own business journey to date in building up my core business and brand, and then launching headfirst into franchising, I have always been a firm believer in collaboration and working as a team. Running and leading a business can be lonely and isolating at times. Simply put, it helps to have others on your side who have or are experiencing the same things as you. In this article, you will find out how to make your franchise successful.

A franchisee joining a franchise brand automatically becomes part of a wider franchise network – individuals running their own businesses independently in different geographical locations, but all delivering the same product or service and working towards at least some of the same goals.people all supporting a plant / how to make your franchise successful

However, how members of that wider franchise network communicate and interact varies hugely across the franchise industry. It is the case that some franchisors don’t like their franchisees to talk to each other! They view that they provide all the assistance and support that a franchisee will need from their management team – and that franchisees talking can only lead to problems. One of the greatest fears that almost all franchisors must have is that franchisees might gang up against the management team to express dissatisfaction at certain issues. Once the franchise network begins to grow past the early stages, the franchisor will quickly become outnumbered! And certainly recent history has seen franchisees unifying in dissatisfaction in a high profile way – take Subway, who suffered a franchisee revolt when hundreds of franchisees successfully petitioned the headquarters to express their unhappiness at the introduction of a footlong deal which they predicted would slash franchisee profits. And fast food giant McDonald’s last year came face to face, with a large number of their franchisees forming an independent lobby group to protest against some initiatives brought in by the new CEO.

I personally however take a different view. I would encourage anyone seriously considering buying into a franchise brand to interrogate the franchisor about the franchise network. How do franchisees communicate? Is communication between franchisees encouraged, and is a platform provided for this to happen, such as a chat group or franchisee forum? Are there structured systems for peer to peer support between franchisees? Are there local or regional franchisee meetings, so franchisees can meet to share advice and support face to face? When an individual considers investing in a franchise, the focus is generally on the brand, the franchisor and the management team. Sometimes these important issues are neglected or simply not given due weight.

Can franchisees help each other?

The support that franchisees offer each other can be vital to the success of the individual franchisee’s business journey. Whereas the management team is one step removed from the “coalface” of the business, fellow franchisees are working on the front line day in and day out. Although there will inevitably be geographical and economic variations, many hurdles that you experience will be common ones. It’s also not only about problem solving, it’s also about sharing advice and stories. This can provide aspirational goals for newer team members, who can see others obtaining success in their businesses. Shared support, problem solving and working together leads to engaged and motivated franchisees who feel part of a team. And this in turn leads to the success of the franchise brand. Within my own brand, we have a collaborative and team-focused approach, with an open team forum for franchisee discussion and a peer to peer support system. This is valued highly by franchisees and is one of the factors that contribute to high franchisee retention rates.

Of course, when franchisees talk, there is always the risk that within any business. Discontent could become amplified, and minor complaints become major discords. But if the franchisor has built a culture within the business that encourages open and honest discussion between franchisees and the management team, as well as between members of the group, then this should be nothing to fear. The rewards of having a network of franchisees who work well together as a team, communicate, collaborate and support each other cannot be underestimated. As they say, teamwork can make the dream work!

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