5 Strategies to Avoid Common Mistakes Franchise Businesses Make

Opinions expressed by Contractor the contributors are theirs.

In addition to being well capitalized with ample cash reserves, there are five key elements to success that new businesses – especially franchises – need to keep in mind. These positives could become pitfalls if not executed thoroughly.

1. Communicate

I have always believed that good communication is the cornerstone of any successful relationship. It is essential that open and positive lines of communication are in place between management and employees, between the company (or franchise) and head office, between staff and with your customers.

Failing to communicate – or thinking you’re alone – is a recipe for failure or frustration. Communication is essential in all business scenarios, and in the franchise world, it is extremely important.

There is a saying in our industry, “franchise owners are in business for themselves, not by themselves”.

Use the resources provided to you. If the company publishes a newsletter, read it. If they are streaming a video, watch it. If they are holding a conference, attend.

For communication to be truly successful, it must be two-way. It’s not just about spreading information, it’s about engaging and contributing.

If you’re asking people to embrace a new way of doing things, it’s essential to manage expectations by clearly communicating what that vision entails.

Clear top-down communication is key to ensuring people know what is expected of them, as well as keeping morale high.

Remember that no matter what is communicated to you, there are always two sides to every situation. See all angles of a story before you choose to act on something. My father gave me this advice early in my life.

Above all, listen. What you say matters, but my advice is to talk less and listen more.

Related: Effective Communication Means Business Success

2. Go back to basics

At the heart of franchising is a proven way to start and grow a business. Return to the owner’s manual.

If you own a franchise, ask your franchisor to do a full audit of your business. Find out what you’re doing right and where you might have gone wrong.

If you’re a business owner or manager and you get a visit from company headquarters and they have suggestions, welcome feedback.

Be sure to set high standards from the start, for yourself and for others. Hold everyone accountable, especially yourself.

3. Embrace change

Many business people struggle with change, and sadly, we live in a time when change hits us all fast.

Changes in technology, SEO, jargon, social issues, cryptocurrencies, and even “the metaverse”! It’s hard to keep up, but it’s important to embrace and use change.

While mastering and being aware of change is important, effort should also be made to align ongoing changes with your specific priorities. In my business, we have one customer: our franchisees. When they succeed, we succeed. Providing the right support to help manage change and implementing change benefits everyone.

Related: 5 Principles for Dealing with Constant Change

4. Call and visit successful stores

There will always be a natural tendency to focus on complaints and faults, but franchise owners can greatly benefit from communicating with and learning from other franchise owners who run their operations successfully.

Ask questions and find out what they are doing to succeed. You may discover things that you are not doing or that you may have missed.

In my case, one of my tasks is to be the facilitator of ideas that I mainly receive from franchise owners. Every month I make a video to share success stories so owners can discover and learn the newest ways and connect with other successful owners.

Related: 8 Characteristics of Successful Franchises

5. Have a positive attitude

Be the number one cheerleader in your company. You need to be able to pump your team from your direction all the way.

Stay positive every day, especially when you lose an order or encounter a hostile customer.

Ditto with enthusiasm: it’s contagious! Countless times I have seen how enthusiasm trumps almost every other attribute, hands down. The tone of your voice and your smile are of utmost importance.

In fact, all these actions not only increase enthusiasm, but also lead to increased profits and satisfied customers.

It comes down to treating people the way you want to be treated. This goes a long way in building a successful business.

Related: Benefits of a Positive Work Environment

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