Becoming a business owner can be a confusing, unsettling process, even when you are buying into an already established franchise. There is so much to learn, so many new responsibilities, and so much well-meaning advice about how you should be doing things. While every business is different, these are some universal, proven tips to help you navigate your journey into franchise ownership.
Develop a realistic financial plan
Before you even start looking at franchise opportunities, take the time to sit down and create a financial plan that makes sense. Determine how much money you can personally invest in your new business up front, how much you can reasonably borrow, and how much of a profit you will need to make to be solvent.
Keep in mind that it will likely be at least a few months before you start to generate a profit — so make sure you have the cash available to support yourself during this phase. Not only will this plan give you a head start when it comes time to generate funding, it will also give you a clear picture of what type of investment you can afford.
Choose the right business for you
Of course, you’ve heard the saying, “Do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.” But you’ve probably also heard people say things like, “Don’t make your hobby your job.” So what’s the middle ground?
The best approach is to look for a franchise opportunity that fits your personality and interests. If you love meeting new people and working a crowd, something in sales might be right up your alley. If you like caring for people and you’re passionate about making a difference in your community, a child or senior care business might be right for you.
Research your market
A solid business plan, plentiful funding, and a stellar skill set mean nothing if there’s no market for your business in your area. So before you decide on a business venture, do extensive research to make sure that you will actually be meeting a need.
For instance, a fast food franchise probably won’t have a lot of customers if there are already multiple similar or identical options in the area. And a daycare facility likely won’t be successful if your community is mainly young adults or retirees.
Choose a good location
Just like when you’re buying a house, location is everything. If your customers can’t find you, then they can’t use your services or buy your products. But you also have to take into account what you learned when researching your market.
Make sure that the location you choose is in an area with a high concentration of potential customers. For example, a trampoline park for children might do well near a school or a family-friendly neighborhood, while an upscale clothing store will fit in better in an area with a lot of white-collar businesses.
Recognize your strengths and weaknesses
This can be difficult to do, but it’s important to recognize and play to your own strengths and weaknesses as a business owner. You may even want to have some good friends or family members weigh in and get some outside perspective. This exercise will help you immensely later on when you are building your team.
Be humble and willing to learn
Any reputable franchise will offer extensive training for new franchisees, and it’s vital that you take advantage of their knowledge and experience. So go into it with a humble attitude and soak up as much information and expertise as you possibly can. Remember, you’re not their first franchisee, and the processes and procedures they have in place have been tested and proven to be effective.
Build a solid team
You can only get so far by yourself, and ultimately, you’ll be relying on your team to help you succeed. So start off right by building a trustworthy, reliable, skilled team that will work with you to make your dream a reality. Look for team members that exhibit the skills or qualities that you lack, so that everyone adds value and complements one another.
Make the commitment
While it is generally easier to get a franchise off the ground than an independent business, that doesn’t mean it’s less work for the business owner. Becoming a business owner, especially in the first year, is a huge commitment of your time and energy. It requires a lot of sacrifice in the short term to eventually become a stable, profitable business owner. So be ready and willing to dedicate yourself to your business, your team, and your customers — and don’t be fooled into thinking that a franchise is an easy path to success.
If you are considering opening a franchise, we hope these tips will help you as you transition into your new career as a business owner. Right Hand Senior Care is currently looking for entrepreneurs who want to serve the most vulnerable members of their communities by providing quality, affordable in-home care.
So what are you waiting for? Get in touch today and change your future with a Right Hand Senior Care franchise.