One of the reasons why franchising can be such a great vehicle for corporate professionals is that the dynamics found in a franchise can be very similar to the dynamics found in a corporate environment.
For example, a franchisor may provide similar resources that you’re used to when working for a corporate company, such as established IT systems, HR functions and Sales and Marketing support.
The only difference between the two is that, with a franchise, you’re the captain of your own ship. You get to leverage the support and systems of the franchisor, primarily to your own benefit, but also at your own risk.
Some of the commonalities between franchise ownership and corporate employment include:
In a corporate environment you’re very often working to established processes and management systems. You are working within the system and bringing those processes to life. This is the essence of successful franchise ownership – following tried and tested systems that have proven to create results. The more accurate you are in doing this, the higher the chances that you will be successful.
Many people are often surprised to hear that the worse types of franchise owners are in fact those that are highly entrepreneurial. This is because entrepreneurs often come in and try to change what’s already proven to work. In contrast to this, the best and most successful type of franchise owners often come from a background where they are used to following systems and procedures.
As within a corporate environment, franchisors often provide specialist support resources that allow you to run your business efficiently and effectively. Such resources include custom IT systems, monitoring and reporting systems for effective tracking and performance improvement, specialised in-house expertise and more.
It can be very common to overlook how important these resources are and how time consuming those activities can be, particularly if you’ve spent your life working in a corporate role. When transitioning from a corporate employee to an independent business owner it often comes as a very large shock as you are responsible for everything; head cook and bottle washer is really an understatement. However, the transition into running a franchised business is usually less harsh and often has many similarities to corporate life.
In a corporate environment it’s common to have the support of peers, colleagues, mentors and the leadership team. While everyone may not be a corporate ally, you will still have the ongoing support from key people and stakeholders. The same level of support is found in franchising, with many different people supporting and actively encouraging your success. The one difference you may find pleasantly surprising is the lack of politics – franchising is a win-win model that’s designed to make everyone your ally, and you theirs.
A Proven Model To Implement
Like having established systems, in a franchise you have a proven route to market and brand proposition that is attractive enough to find and retain customers. Rather than trying to figure out what to do, you spend all your time and energy on doing what’s proven to work, thus attaining immediate results.
Annual Conferences And Regional Meetings
Annual conferences and regional meetings are usually key events on the corporate calendar, with activities such as Sales Kick-Off drawing employees from multiple regions into one place.
Similar conferences and meetings occur within franchise networks and are often big events that attract specialist guest speakers and award ceremonies. These conferences and events are great at facilitating networks with fellow franchisees, learning of the latest development and improvements within the business model and head office, while helping to keep you focused and driving forward progress.
These events can truly bring to life the saying that franchising is working for yourself, but not by yourself.
Despite the similarities, there are also fundamental differences between franchise ownership and corporate employment. Some of those differences include:
No longer are you slave to your calendar or the agendas of others. As a franchisee you have significant control over how you spend your time and where you choose to spend it. This often comes as a refreshing and positive step forward for many professionals who have grown tired of the corporate roller coaster.
Reduced Corporate Politics
Another major benefit of becoming a franchisee is simply the lack of corporate politics. While there will always be some level of politics happening in every business, franchising is based on a win-win-win model – you, the franchisor and the customers all win. This results in a significant reduction of corporate politics. While you may always have to manage up and down, you will find that this will be a walk in a park compared to some of the corporate environments that you’ve worked in.
Greater Financial Incentives
One of the major benefits of business ownership is its ability to increase income and create wealth. This is largely due to leveraging systems and processes to become a business owner, rather than someone who works for a business.
Reduced Financial Certainty
The other side of the coin to greater financial incentives in reduced financial certainty. Many of you will have spent a lifetime with a guaranteed pay check at the end of the month that allowed you to pay your mortgage, support your family and cover other personal expenses. You may also be used to lucrative benefits such as paid holiday, pension contributions, bonuses, healthcare and more.
As a business owner, the certainty behind these perks are reduced, at least in the early years. As you become more established you will find these perks returning and, in many cases, exceeding what you previously had in a corporate environment, but until you will have a period of reduced financial certainty.
This period is significantly reduced when starting a franchised business compared to an independent business because with a franchise you are getting a proven business model to operate – allowing you to shortcut the start-up phase and go straight to success.
One of the major differences that I consistently hear from corporate professionals when they move into franchising is simply the abundance of fresh, new challenges. Many have grown tired of the lack of challenge that’s been presented to them over the prior years, or the unrealistic expectations that what put upon them by their employer.
They now find themselves in a position where they can utilize the skills and experience that they’ve built over the course of their career and direct that to their own, chosen challenges, allowing them to achieve success on their own terms. It’s very exciting!
Greater Contact With End Customers
Many corporate professionals lost touch with the end customers many years ago and have thoroughly enjoyed reconnecting with the end customer, listening to their needs and delivering an excellent product and/or service.
Greater Control Over The Direction Of The Business
A large majority of the corporate executives that we’ve worked with have expressed a great deal of surprise and disappointment to find that the higher they climbed the corporate ladder, the less control they had over the direction of the business.
Many have described themselves as order takers with very little influence on the overall direction of the business. As a franchisee you have total control of the direction of your business, within the bounds of the franchise agreement and can develop the business as you see fit, in the way that you think is best.
Increased Ability To Control Your Own Destiny
Last but certainly not least is the increased ability to take off and control your destiny. One of the major appeals to business ownership is your ability to choose your direction and to decide what you’re going to do with your life and how you’re going to contribute to the lives of those you love and the world as a whole.
Franchising truly allows you to design your lifestyle in a way that allows you to schedule your priorities first and let the less important things take a back seat in life, as they so rightly should. This is in stark contrast to the corporate lifestyle, where you are a slave to the corporate calendar.