Helping a business grow and thrive through franchising has been proven to be a brilliant way to increase brand awareness and see quick returns on your investment. But when it comes to running a Chem-Dry Franchise, a national clothing retailer, or a statewide sandwich chain, there are a few things that successful franchise owners have in common. Buying a franchise might seem easy up front, but it can be a long, uphill battle if you’re not prepared. From creating a solid, sterling brand reputation to expanding franchise resources, you’ll have to wear many hats for at least the first few years of expansion. And when it comes to finding the franchise opportunity that’s right for you, there are a few pieces of criteria that your potential franchisees will insist that you meet. For businesses looking for a great owner to take them to the next level, these are the traits that are non-negotiable.
A Great Work Ethic
Running a franchise isn’t like running a regular business. It takes a lot more coordination, quick thinking, and strategizing to pay off in the end. That means that in the first few months or even years of expansion, a franchise owner is going to have to wear a lot of different hats. Owners have to be on the ground at their new locations making sure everything is running smoothly and staying consistent. They have to hire employees who fit the brand image and adhere to its values. They have to be present for marketing meetings and location scouting, and they always have to keep the big picture in mind. If this sounds like a lot to juggle, it is. Make no mistake: Franchise owners have to be people who love to work. When it comes to creating a successful franchise, there’s no such thing as passive income. Every bit of the franchise’s success will be hard-earned, and in the first few years, getting all the details into place will be an all-consuming task.
As mentioned before, being able to take on many different roles is key for successful franchise owners. If you’re someone who’s rigid about taking on a management or leadership role and doesn’t want to have to deal with marketing or ground-level work, owning a franchise may not be for you. That said, if you thrive in unpredictable, fast-paced environments and enjoy the challenge of having to take on multiple responsibilities at once, chances are you’ll approach every new task with relish. The best franchise owners are creative problem solvers who are quick on their feet and totally unafraid of getting messy. When it comes to building a lasting, successful franchise, there’s no room for shyness or uncertainty.
A franchise owner always has to be thinking about ways to bring their business to the next level. Whether that means creating a new ad campaign, finding better ways to engage with customers via social media or customer service channels, or figuring out where to open the next location, franchise owners have to be dedicated to always pushing the business forward. That means finding allies and building relationships with investors or partners who can help get a franchise where it wants to go. In addition to being customer-focused and social, a great franchise owner has to be skilled at negotiation and able to convince even the most conservative investors that their business is a safe bet. This doesn’t just take charm, it takes concentrated skill and an ability to show up at networking events, business lunches, and after work drinks with important clients from all over the country, and potentially all over the world.
A Talent for Branding
For a franchise, branding is everything. In a world where tons of different businesses are constantly competing for the same customer base’s attention, finding new, creative ways to center your brand at the center of the conversation is an asset that will help a franchise rise above the competition. A great franchise owner won’t just be great at creating marketing campaigns and crafting a brand message that draws in new customers. They’ll be able to create narrative pitches for new clients and start conversations about the brand that keep people talking. The best franchise owners know that while a brand needs to stay consistent with messaging, it also needs to keep changing with the times if it’s going to survive. Whether a franchise owner uses social media to advance new brand narratives and boost visibility or works hard to form partnerships with charities and brand ambassadors, they’ll have to work nonstop to make sure that the franchise image stays consistent, clean, and ever-relevant in a changing marketplace.