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SMART Decision

 Make a SMART Decision

Franchising is not for you if you thinking that all you have to do is pay the franchise fee and turn the key.  Being a business owner, even with proven systems, is a lot of hard work, especially at the beginning.  Nevertheless, the rewards of preserving are well worth it!

So before you commit to a franchise, make a SMART decision.

S: Be specific.  What are your strengths, experience, and education and can you find a franchise business where you can leverage what you do best?

M: Set goals for yourself.  That is where a professional franchise consultant and coach like eAdvantage4u can help you – and at no cost since we work much like recruiters.

A: Are your goals attainable?  Do you have any obstacles or limitations in terms of health or otherwise you feel may sabotage your efforts to do what you think you want to do?

R: Are your goals realistic?

T: Are your objectives and goals timely?  Is there any reason not to begin now?

To help you set SMART goals, your eAdvantage4u coach will ask you three questions:

1.  Is this business a good match for you?

Unless you are truly loaded, you are probably going to start out as an “owner-operator.”  There will be times when you are wearing all of the hats and performing all of the necessary tasks from running a cash register, driving a truck, mopping a floor or doing whatever grunt work may be required.  Can you physically do what the owner needs to do until you build your business to the point where you can justify hiring staff?

Your goal will be to build your franchise business to a point where you’re what’s known as “owner-manager” and at that point, your staff handles most of the details of running the show, leaving you free to tend to the big issues, as well as spend time with the grandkids or run off to Europe.  It can take time to reach this goal.

If you are looking at a franchise, do not forget to consider how the business might grow and evolve as your own life changes.

2.  Is this an appropriate risk?

Always keep in mind that you will be using a combination of equity and debt most likely to finance your business.  More than likely, after age 50, the money is that what you were building for your retirement nest egg.  What are your options?  Will you have enough left to live comfortably?  On the other hand, is the money insufficient for you to live on?  Many find that if they take their retirement funds and invest in a business, business ownership can be a way of increasing their equity so that they do have enough to enjoy life in the retirement years.  However, great care is required to find a business that they can build successfully because there are no guarantees.

A company that is just beginning to franchise itself is obviously more of a gamble than one celebrating its 20th anniversary.  If you decide to become a franchisee of a relatively new company but with only a few franchisees, you could be buying into a flawed business model that burns through your investment funds and leaves you on the street.  On the other hand, you might be one of the first of a great system, with choice of territory.  Who would not have liked to be in on the ground floor as McDonald’s was taking off?

An existing franchise that has been operating successfully in a location for years may be much easier to run than one that you are opening yourself and does not yet have trusted and competent employees or a customer base.  The advantage is that you are buying a cash stream.  The disadvantage is that an existing, successful franchise may also be more expensive and you will not increase your equity in the business as much when you exit and decide to sell.

3.  Do you have enough money?

It is not uncommon to invest $50,000, $100,000 or more when buying a Subway, Great Clips, UPS Store, Ace Hardware or any other well-known franchise systems.  It is not uncommon to invest $50,000, $100,000 or even more when buying a Subway, Great Clips, UPS Store, Ace Hardware or number of well known Franchises.  You will likely need good credit as well.  Not everyone has the courage to make change or the resources to do so.  Nevertheless, if you have the resources, choose well – and that is where your eAdvantage4u consultant, with experience spanning more than 25 years in the industry, can assist you in making a better choice by guiding you and helping you find answers to important questions.  Only you can do the due diligence needed to invest in any particular business; however, your eAdvantage4u consultant can help you by sharing an investigation process and help keep you focused so you can get the answers you need to make an informed decision.

If you want to learn more about how you might go from employee to entrepreneur, contact an eAdvantage4u consultant  at 614-766-1999 for a free assistance and personal guidance.  lsturm@eAdvantage4u.com.