“I sold my franchises to the wrong franchisees,” a franchisor recently lamented during one of our coaching calls.
I can’t tell you how often I have heard that statement in the last 30-plus years.
What can I say?
Shame on you?
“Yes, you did, and what a shame for you.” Or should I say, “What a shame for those franchisees”?
Because those franchisees are suffering. That’s what finally got my client’s attention. She said, “I run the same business that my franchisees are supposed to be running. I know it’s a good business. I kept asking myself, ‘Why do I succeed at this business and they do not?’ And finally it hit me. They are the wrong people for this business.”
It makes perfect sense, but it doesn’t work
Here’s how that happens. A franchisor of an accounting service sells his franchises to accountants. A franchisor of a pet industry business sells his franchises to people who love pets. A barbershop franchisee sells his franchises to barbers. A photography franchisor sells his franchises to photographers. This is like mixing apples and oranges, or oranges and lemons! It doesn’t work.
Franchisors are supposed to sell franchises to people who can learn how to operate a specific business. Just because you can shoot great photos doesn’t mean you can learn to succeed in a photography business. Those are two different disciplines, and they require different skills.
Learn this lesson and protect yourself
But franchisors are slow to learn this lesson. Therefore, you, the prospective franchisee, better learn the lesson fast. Do not invest in any franchise just because the product or service appeals to you, or because it’s a product or service that you know you can provide. That’s not why franchisees succeed! They succeed because they learn how to build a specific business.
A quick assessment of your skills
I cannot take award-winning photographs. I can’t do anyone’s accounting. I could not cut your hair to your satisfaction. But I could run a great photography, accounting or hair salon business. I know I could because I have the skills to run those kinds of businesss. Until you know what skills you possess, beware of buying a franchise. And if a franchisor isn’t testing you for your skills in advance of you investing in a franchise – run from that franchisor.
By the way, you can find out your aptitude for operating franchised businesses by spending a few moments with the Franchise Navigator. The assessment will tell you the types of businesses that make sense for you.
Tags: American Dream, be an entrepreneur, Buy a Franchise, franchise opportunity, franchise trends, hot franchise, skills, why franchisees fail, why franchisees succeed
This post was written by Dr. John Hayes