The Franchiser/Franchisee relationship is a lot like a marriage. Do You Take This Franchiser?Before you say, “I do,” you may want to hear yourself say, “Due Diligence.”
We spotted just that sentiment in the article titled “Franchisees: Don’t Say ‘I Do’ to a Franchisor Unless the Chemistry is Right,” posted on Entrepreneur.com.
Just as we happily share our vast point of sale experience and expertise with startup owners in order to help them make the best decisions from the very beginning, we at Sintel Systems are happy to share articles and commentary about the perceptions and reality of the risks involved in making a career change.
Here are some of the highlights of the Entrepreneur.com article:
“Finding the right franchisor involves a rational mind that brings a hard-boiled, skeptical, bottom-line-focused approach to due diligence,” writes Entrepreneur.com. “But it also involves the heart, because you want to attach yourself to a brand that stokes your entrepreneurial passion.”
But the right fit includes a fair assessment of one’s business acumen. Leslie Kuban, a consultant and franchisee with franchise consulting service FranNet, tells Entrepreneur.com, “Just because a person loves dogs doesn’t mean they’ll love running a doggy daycare franchise … Your personal love affair with a certain type of business shouldn’t color the day-to-day reality of owning and running that business.”
In the article, Entrepreneur.com sees the franchisee-franchisor relationship as “one that often begins as an arranged marriage of sorts, with both parties knowing little about each another in the early stages of courtship.” The post states there is great merit to the two parties getting to know one another before formalizing a partnership.
As with a marriage, good communication and a spirit of cooperation from the earliest stages of courtship are crucial to a successful partnership. “The common denominator is having a franchisor who sees their franchisees as equal partners,” Kuban tells Entrepreneur.com. “It’s not an employer-employee relationship in disguise. The franchisor understands their business, and they also understand they have multiple customers, including their franchisees, the franchisees’ customers and their employees.”
For better, for worse and hopefully for a long, prosperous run, the franchisee-franchisor relationship is “a lot like a marriage,” said Craig Dunaway, president of Penn Station East Coast Subs. Dunaway spent 16 years as a franchisee and now heads the Cincinnati-based company and its 275-unit network.
Dunaway cherishes the open dialogue with his franchisees. “Ultimately you’re laying the groundwork for a relationship where franchisee and franchisor can be candid and comfortable with one another, where there’s a strong sharing, no-surprises, problem-solving mindset on both sides,” he tells Entrepreneur.com.
“If the franchisor doesn’t emphasize [communication], it’s difficult to build trust with franchisees,” Dunaway continued. “You don’t want a franchisor who’s a yes man. You want one who confronts contentious issues, admits mistakes if they happen and readily takes input. That’s what keeps these relationships solid.”
Kuban added, “Often, a relationship fails because the franchisee never got their arms around what their day-to-day responsibilities of running the business were. They didn’t focus enough on that during their due diligence.”
Read the full Entrepreneur.com post here.
Before you make your franchise move, consider calling Sintel Systems for a free phone consultation to help weigh and understand your point of sale options. We serve as a franchise incubator for clients across the retail, restaurant and service industries, forming lasting partnerships with our clients that you simply can’t get from a reseller.
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