Acceler8Success Cafe Friday 4.5.19

Acceler8Success Cafe is Your Daily Resource About Entrepreneurship & Business Ownership!

Today’s Featured Topic: Franchising

“While franchising’s prevalence in the U.S. economy indicates that franchisees can succeed, hundreds of franchisees fail each year. The most frequent causes: lack of funds, poor people skills, reluctance to follow the formula, a mismatch between franchisee and the business, and poor management. Often, it’s the small stuff that separates winners from losers.” – WSJ.com

This week on Franchising & You, long-time franchise veteran and entrepreneur, Stuart Williams talks about things franchisees should not only be prepared to do, but committed to do to give themselves every chance possible for success. Franchisees must do their part to help build the right culture while also following through on their passion for the brand, adequate capitalization, conformity to systems and involvement in the franchise family. Listen Saturday April 6th at 9:30 AM EDT / 8:30 AM CDT here and on-demand at same link thereafter.

‘Shaq’ Becomes Papa John’s Multi-Unit Operator

Multi-Unit Franchisee Insight – Innovation & Operations

Is Multi Unit, Multi Brand Ownership The Future Of Restaurant Franchising?

The Next Frontier: Five Countries Poised For American Brand Franchise Development

How (And When) To Franchise Your Business

Are you ready to franchise your business or put your recently franchised brand on the right track?

Franchise Business University is THE place to learn about franchising.

Notably, the franchise business model has been called, “The greatest business model ever invented.”

If you’re interested in leveraging the franchise model so you can be your own boss-instead of working for one, this is your opportunity to learn all you can about franchise business ownership.

Enroll in a franchise course today!

Find The Right Funding Solution for Your Business: Prequalify for your franchise here!

Franchising For Dummies, Second Edition gives you all the inside insight and smart advice to make sure you pick the right investment opportunity and make the most of it. Written by one of the nation’s leading franchise consultants, Michael Seid and by the late Dave Thomas, founder of Wendy’s International, this fun, friendly guide is packed with guidance from top industry professionals. Order on Amazon!

Benetrends FinancialSpadea Lignana & Retail Solutions

Franchising: Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow

World of FranchisingAs I often do on the weekends, I was searching through my personal library seeking out a book or two that might provide me some inspiration for an article or report, and this weekend, I came across a business book that was published back in 1979. The book, “Free Yourself in a Business of Your Own” by Byron Lane, caught my eye for reasons I cannot really explain. Obviously, I’ve had it in my possession for many years, yet, never opened it again since I purchased it for $1.29 at Target. It must have been a clearance book as the cover price was $5.95. Anyway, I can’t even recall seeing it when I routinely search through my library. It’s like it suddenly jumped out front and center and said, “Hey, look here!”

Well, I decided to look through the book because the back cover stated, “This book is about freedom. Freedom from an 8 to 5 regimen. Freedom from dehumanizing democracies. Freedom from job boredom. Freedom from the lock-step culture. Freedom to do your work your way.” Hmmm… not much seems to have changed although lock-step culture is not one I’ve heard of before.

Right away, my thoughts turned to franchising and I began to think about what franchising was like back in 1979. Fortunately, I didn’t have to think very hard, as to my surprise, was a chapter on franchising! It’s placement was to present franchising strictly as an alternative to other forms of business ownership, and in a book with 174 pages, the franchising chapter comprised all of 3 pages. Yes, 3 pages!

Within these pages were a series of bullet points that I found very interesting and it made me wonder how much franchising had actually changed since 1979, and if the changes have improved franchising today. Read the bullet points below and you be the judge.

– While there are no federal laws governing franchising, most states have franchise laws. Get a copy of the law in your state and read it for degree of stringency and coverage. If it is a tough law and a franchising company qualifies to do business in your state, you have one measure of security.

– Don’t believe that acceptance of you by a franchiser means they have evaluated your ability to get the job done. Some franchisers would select a corpse if rigor mortis had not set in and if it clutched in its hand a certified check for the amount of the franchise fee. Do your own introspection and decide if you can handle the franchise.

– Do not deal with profit projections or average profits. Insist on actual financial statements from a cross-section of franchisees. Then, evaluate your expected return on investment.

– Get the financial statement of the parent company and evaluate its ability to provide the services it promises.

– Read the franchise contract. It should be simple, frank, and fair, with complete disclosure, not an instrument of repression. After you think it through with your head, listen to your gut and determine if the contract fits you

– Finally, and perhaps most important of all, is evaluation of the franchiser’s management team. You should do this from two aspects – their management ability and their humanness. If the management does not measure up to good corporate standards, you will not get the profits you seek. You may turn out okay, but they can bring you down.

 

Discussion About IFA’s 50th Anniversary Exemplifies What Franchising is Really About!

Recently, on the International Franchise Association group on LinkedIn, I posted the following discussion, “The 50th Annual IFA Convention in San Antonio is less than three weeks away. Will you be attending? If so, what do you hope to bring back to your organization? If not, is there a specific reason?”

Many franchise professionals responded and explained why they would be attending the event. Most of the responses centered around sharing ideas and building relationships. Sure, some mentioned exploring new opportunities with potential and existing clients, but we are all in business to make money, right? But in addition to generating new business, almost all that responded were looking to interact with fellow franchise professionals. Hopefully, long-term relationships will be established over time and the franchise community will continue to evolve and strengthen.

One of the responses was from franchise veteran, Michael Seid. He stated that he had been going to IFA conventions for 25 years. I really admired the fact that he had attended these events for over a quarter of a century! Think about all that has changed in 25 years. Just think about the technological changes that have occurred during this period of time. I mean no one was walking around the IFA event in 1985 with a cell phone, right? How about a laptop? Could anyone have even imagined the internet and email? Heck, fax machines were barely around in 1985, albeit the ones that were used that ridiculous paper that always seemed to roll onto to the floor and under a desk… just out of reach.

Yes, times sure have changed, but the love and passion for franchising apparently has not. It’s just been passed onto people like Michael Seid. By virtue of his responses to my original discussion, and subsequent question, “I’m curious, what was the convention like back in, what, 1985?”, Michael takes us down memory lane and does so in such a dignified manner and with genuine sincerity, that he really seemed to pay it forward. For the benefit of all within the franchise community, I am honored to share his response below.

“1985 was in Miami if I recall and that was not my first so it may be longer than [25 years]. If I recall the attendance at my first convention was measured in the hundreds – not like we have now in the thousands. It was a much different association – we have come a long way with programming and content and member services. A lot of the founders were still around. I just got a great biography of Joe Francis from The Barbers who was very active years ago. If you did not know Joe you missed a great man – really a fine individual who went out of his way to give guidance to anyone who asked for his help. His son is still very active in the IFA. It’s a great quick read if you have not seen the book. Joe is gone 15 or more years.

The culture of the IFA has not changed. You can still corner an experienced member as a new comer and they seem always to be thrilled to mentor and give advice. I remember asking Fred DeLuca a question when I was new in the association and he spent two or more hours giving me his advice. That has not changed at all as most members today will do the same for a new comer.

Looking back at what has changed – No franchisees back then. That was a major difference Steve Lynn and Jim Bugg made that happen). No PAC to speak of (Sid Feltenstein changed that). No franchise appreciation day (Bernie Browning‘s idea). No Education Foundation only an education committee (I think Sid Feltenstein is also responsible for that). No thought of diversity or minorities in franchising (Ron Harrison). No VetFran (Don Dwyer‘s idea during the first gulf war). No Second Tuesdays (if it was not Lane Fisher and Scott Lehr then they were responsible for making it grow as it has). Who would have thought we would be looking at using franchising to provide products and services to the poor in the emerging markets and yet today we have the Social Sector Franchising task force. No CFE (John Reynolds). No one would have thought of a franchisee ever being chairman (Steve Siegel was the first and Doc Cohen the second). No franchisees or suppliers forum leadership on the board (Joyce Mazero if I recall was the first Counsel of Suppliers chair on the board and Jeff Kolton was the second – although we had no vote then. Supplier membership on the Executive Committee did not exist (I had that privilege when I was supplier chair to be the first because of Gary Charlwood).

I remember the IFA chair years ago saying that he would never let a mattress salesman (his word for suppliers) ever being on the board. Suppliers got a board vote when Gary Charlwood was chairman). No suppliers elected to the board in their own name for six years (I was privileged to be the first and Lane Fisher the second). No women as chairman (Joanne Shaw was the first and Dina Dwyer the second). No major investment in research (Mike Isakson). I think Jim Amos when he was chair actually creating the first IFA long range strategic plan. When Don DeBolt became president of the IFA we were near bankrupt and look at the great financial condition we are in now (Russ Frith as Treasurer did an amazing job). We did a lousy job in lobbying years ago and now we have a huge public affairs team. We dealt with Coble and LaFalce holding hearings on relationship laws in Congress and those days are gone.

Yes a lot has changed over the years. We owe a debt to a lot of some very smart folks who were in the leadership back then who kept adding great elements to make the association better. Along the way we had some who were less than stellar also but for the most part, we have been fortunate by those who chose to be in the leadership. Lets not forget the amazing job Debbie Moss has done in growing and professionalizing the convention supported by a really professional team of staff.

Still with all of the change, growth and the better financial condition of the association, the culture of the IFA has not really changed. I expect that many of the members/leaders from years ago who have not been active in the IFA will be at the 50th anniversary. Some of them will be surprised and pleased how far we have come.”


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