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Viable Career Choices

Viable Career Choices

 Why Franchising and Business Ownership
Are Viable Career Choices

Franchises are one of the most prevalent industries in the American economy, and it is easy to see why.  Becoming a franchisee offers an individual the opportunity to run a business while building off the success of the business, as if it has already been running for years (which of course, it has).

A franchisee starts the franchised business but does not have to address many of the typical aspects of a startup, such as incorporation or trade marking, thus avoiding many of the problems and costs of starting a business.  If you are interested in starting your own business, but are looking for a way in without necessarily starting from scratch, franchising may be for you!

Choosing the Right Franchise.  The first step in becoming a franchisee is to choose with franchise you would like to pursue.  A franchise should fit with the franchisee’s schedule.  If the franchisee is uninterested in working nights and weekends, franchises that are open non-traditional hours probably are not a good choice.  The franchisee’s available budget to start the business is also a major consideration.  Some franchises are more expensive to start than other franchises – such as a hotel versus a service store.  Becoming a business owner is an investment of time and money; the franchisee will want and need to enjoy going to work, in order to make the franchise a success.

Impressing the Franchisor.  Most franchisors receive numerous calls from prospective franchisees but can only offer so many opportunities to join.  As a result, becoming a franchisee in a highly desired franchise is a competitive process.  Franchisors are looking for people who share the dream and will support the company, but are also motivated and successful.  The best thing a franchisee can do to improve his chances of selection by the Franchisor is to thoroughly research the company and arrive promptly and prepared for all meetings.  This conveys the impression that the franchisee is dependable and sincerely interested in the franchise, two key qualities cited by franchise hiring departments.   

Negotiating with the Franchisor.  Another obstacle in becoming a franchisee is drafting the contract and interacting with the franchisor.  Before committing, it is wise for a franchisee to consult an attorney regarding the contract.  While a franchisee may not have much leeway in terms of changing the contract, it is very important that the franchisee know what to expect from the relationship.  A franchisee may also want to have a lawyer look over the Franchisor Disclosure Document, which serves as the discloser for the franchise, similar to a disclosure circular from a company to a potential investor.  The Franchisor Disclosure Document (FDD) lays out much of the necessary information for the franchisee, including the history of the franchise, financing specifics, trademark usage regulations, and provisions for future conflict (both legal and financial).  Since the Franchisor continues to control many of the business decisions of the franchisee, to avoid problems, the franchisee should enter into the relationship with as much information as possible.

Financing the Franchise.  Just like any other business, a franchisee must finance the startup costs of running a new franchise.  Some franchisees may be in the quite enviable position of being able to finance their own dreams; however, most require an outside funding source.  A franchisee is typically not in a position to take on investors for financing but there are many other sources of funding available.  Friends and family may be a good place to start.  Often, these “loans” will have better interest rates and payment schedules.  Friends and family are always looking to see those close to them to succeed and as a result, are more willing to be informally involved.  Personal loans and credit cards are a second way to make money to start the franchise.  If a franchisee has good credit, this may be a good choice; however, it puts the franchisee’s personal assets at risk in the event the franchise fails.  A franchisee can also get small business loans or grants.  In the current economy, these have been hard to come by, but it is getting better.  There are many options for a franchisee seeking funding, some are more obvious than others are, but a little research can unearth a variety of choices. 

Engaging in a franchise relationship is one of the best ways for someone to become a business owner.  In many respects, the franchisee gets to do the fun part of being a business owner without addressing many of the problems of starting a business.  If you are looking to start your own business but not sure where to start, franchising may be a viable option for you!

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Do you still have questions?  This is where eAdvantage4u and someone who is a professional business and franchise consultant and career coach and business advisor can help you.  Laurel (Lori) Israel Sturm, a certified franchise executive with over 25 years of experience first as a franchise attorney, leads eAdvantage4u.  She has worked with franchisors and franchisees to get started and helped them to get funded and opened.  She has guided them to overcome business issues.  For the past 10 years, she also worked to help those interested in becoming business owners, find and launch businesses.  She and eAdvantage4u work at no cost, much like a recruiter, so you get the help you need when you are just beginning to wonder if it would be possible to own your own business.  She will help you define your goals and then help you develop a plan to reach your goals.  She will assist you so you can find the right type of franchises within your resources and refer you to the right funding sources.  She also pays attention to the operational requirements and culture to help you find the type of franchise that works well with your talents and experience. 

Contact eAdvantage4u today to learn more about how we might help you embrace business ownership!  614-766-1999 EST or lsturm@eAdvantage4u.com.