As a franchisee, you can develop your own enterprise, within the knowledge-bank of a reputable, established and thriving organisation. The success rate for those engaged in this manner has been shown to outstrip conventional self-employment by a long way.
Visiting franchise exhibitions is an ideal way to learn about this unique opportunity. They enable you to establish personal relationships with major players in the industry: franchisors, bankers and advisors, in a ‘one stop shop’ environment.
• Take time out to plan: You need to pre-select those stands you wish to visit. The range of business ventures is very wide. There could be 200 franchisors on display and a focussed approach is necessary.
• Attend the seminars: If you’re new to franchising, find time to attend the seminars. There will be experts who can explain the fundamentals of franchising, franchisors who present their opportunities and franchisees who describe how they realised their ambitions.
• Meet the people: Clearly, you’re not going to sign a cheque here! You just want to meet the people behind the brand, obtain a better understanding of their business model – and the competition – and go home to think about it.
• Professional advice: Try to find time to meet professional advisors. You may need funding and banks will usually lend up to 70% of the cost for reputable franchises and offer good advice. You will also need the services of a franchise solicitor to review your franchise agreement.
Burnley-based David Gray joined the Auditel Cost and Purchase Management Franchise in 2008. Prior to becoming a franchisee, he spent 21 years in the Royal Air Force as an aircrew linguist, flying on board the Nimrod R1 reconnaissance aircraft in support of many operations, mainly in the Balkans and Middle East.
David recalls: “Without doubt, I could not have started my own business independently. Although the military endowed me with many good qualities and attributes, business acumen was not one of them. I made the decision early to go self-employed and for me franchising was the only sensible option.”
He visited the British Franchise Exhibition in Manchester and found it very helpful. David said: “Having a full range of franchises under one roof was extremely beneficial. I came across Auditel and was immediately impressed with their business model and how well it suited the current economic situation.
“Since joining Auditel, I have found the experience to be testing and hard work, but ultimately very rewarding. While a franchise model offers some sort of proven framework for business, there are no shortcuts to success. I know this is an oft-repeated cliché but it is true.
“I am approaching the end of my fifth year. I have enjoyed the challenges and the rewards of self-employment and cannot imagine going back to work for anyone else now. I have no regrets and really enjoy running my Auditel business!”
Matt Sidwell, Auditel’s Network Development Director says: “If like David you are exploring ways to expand your horizon, visit the Manchester Franchise Exhibition, 21st and 22nd June, and drop in on stand R80. We’d be delighted to meet you!”