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Is Franchising Right For Me?

Is Franchising Right For Me?

If you have been considering opening your own business but are concerned with risking your money with an unknown or unproven product or service, you may do well to consider franchising. Franchises are often the best way to go, especially for new entrepreneurs who are looking to be their own boss, but at the same time reduce their risk of losing their hard-earned money.

Unlike opening your own startup business from scratch, with a franchise you can get support from the parent company as well as fellow franchisees. You’ll find this can be a valuable resource, helping you with questions and guiding you toward your eventual success in the business world.

Whether or not you are successful in franchising depends a great deal on what type of business you are planning to start. Though, in most cases, you will find that, regardless of the type of business, franchising is the much safer and easier route to go.

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Which role will you play?

You will also want to decide what kind of role you want to play in the business. Do you want to be an absentee owner, who hires management staff that deals with the day-to-day running of the business, or do you want to be more like an owner/operator who is directly involved in running your own business?

About the investment…

    Another important question you will definitely want to consider is how much you plan on investing in your franchise. Franchises can cost anywhere from less than $10,000 to over $1 million.

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    For instance, opening a restaurant franchise will cost a bit more than opening a franchise selling merchandise from home, as you will have to deal with overhead costs such as equipment and food inventory with a restaurant. This BusinessNewsDaily article should give you a good idea of the different types of franchises out there as well as the startup costs.

    Make some research first.

    Once you’ve decided on the kind of business you want to get into and the initial investment you are willing to put up, you will want to carefully research the different franchise opportunities available. Some of the things you will want to consider include: how good of a support system they have, how good is the corporate staff, and how vested are they in seeing their franchisees succeed in their goals. This is an important life decision you are making, and the more time you take in researching your prospective franchisors, the more likely you will succeed in your franchise venture.

    One big part of researching potential franchisors is reading their financial disclosure document (FDD) carefully and thoroughly. You should pay close attention to past or current litigations (Items 1-4), financial performance and historical grown (Items 19 and 21), and current and past franchisees (Item 20). The last of these items is particularly useful for your research, as you can contact not only current franchisees to see how well the program is working for them, but also talk to franchisees who chose to get out of the franchise. It is a good idea to talk to as many franchisees as possible to get an overview of just how well the particular franchise works.

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    What does your franchise need to succeed?

      You may be wondering what type of people actually run successful franchises. Are franchises only for people who are business savvy with a master’s degree in business? Can the common man open a franchise and expect to succeed?

      You will be glad to know that there are many successful franchisees from all walks of life, from business gurus to the “common man on the street.” There have also been many famous celebrities who have recognized the value of franchises, such as those found in this Famous Franchisee Quiz! So, you will be in good company if you do decide to get into franchising.

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      This article only touches on a few of the aspects of franchising, but hopefully, it does answer your question on whether or not this is the right type of venture for you. Just keep in mind, whether you are franchising or deciding to start your business from the ground up, the number one reason for your success will always be YOU. Any business venture, regardless of what type of business it is, requires dedication and hard work, research and commitment. If you are willing to dedicate yourself to your business and put in the work, you have a good chance of becoming successful.

      Featured photo credit: businessfranchiseaustralia.com via businessfranchiseaustralia.com.au

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      Erick Clifford

      Journalist

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      Last Updated on August 20, 2019

      How to Find New Growth Opportunities at Work

      How to Find New Growth Opportunities at Work

      Career advancement is an enticement that today’s companies use to lure job candidates. But to truly uncover growth opportunities within a company, it’s up to you to take the initiative to move up.

      You can’t rely on recruiter promises that your company will largely hire from within. Even assurances you heard from your direct supervisor during the interviewing process may not pan out. But if you begin a job knowing that you’re ultimately responsible for getting yourself noticed, you will be starting one step ahead.

      Accomplished entrepreneur and LinkedIn Co-Founder Reid Hoffman said,

      “If you’re not moving forward, you’re moving backward.”

      It’s important to recognize that taking charge of your own career advancement, and then mapping out the steps you need to succeed, is key to moving forward on your trajectory.

      Make a Point of Positioning Yourself as a Rising Star

      As an employee looking for growth opportunities within your current company, you have many avenues to position yourself as a rising star.

      As an insider, you’re able to glean insights on company strategies and apply your expertise where it’s most needed. Scout out any skills gaps, then make a point to acquire and apply them. And, when you have creative ideas to offer, make it your mission to gain the ear of those in the organization who can put your ideas to the test.

      Valiant shows of commitment and enterprise make managers perk up and take notice, keeping you ahead of both internal and external competitors.

      Employ these other useful tips to let your rising star qualities shine:

      1. Promote Your Successes to Your Higher-Ups

      When your boss casually asks how you’re doing, use this valuable moment to position yourself as indispensable: “I’m floating on clouds because three clients have already commented on how well they like my redesign of the company website.”

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      Tell your supervisors about any and all successes. Securing a new contract or signing a new customer should be a cause for celebration. Be sure to let your bosses know.

      2. Cultivate Excellent Listening Skills

      Listen well, and ask great questions. Realize that people love to talk about themselves.

      But if you’re a superb listener, others will confide in you, and you’ll learn from what they share. You may even find out something valuable about your own prospects in the company.

      If others view you as even-minded and thoughtful, they’ll respect your ideas and, in turn, listen to what you have to say.

      Check out these important listening skills: 13 Powerful Listening Skills to Improve Your Life at Work and at Home

      3. Go to All Office Networking Events

      Never skip the office Christmas party, your coworker’s retirement party, or any office birthday parties, wedding showers, or congratulatory parties for colleagues.

      If others see you as a team player, it will help you rise in your company. These on-site parties will also help you mingle with co-workers whom you might not ordinarily have the chance to see. For special points, help organize one or two of these get-togethers.

      Take the Extra Step to Show Your Value to the Company

      Managers and HR staff know that it can be less risky – and a lot less costly — to promote from within. As internal staff, you likely have a good grasp of the authority structure and talent pool in the company, and know how to best navigate these networks in achieving both the company’s goals and your own.

      The late Nobel-Prize winning economist, Gary Becker, coined the term “firm-specific,” which describes the unique skills required to excel in an individual organization. You, as a current employee, have likely tapped into these specific skills, while external hires may take a year or more to master their nuances.

      Know that your experience within the company already provides value, then find ways to add even more value, using these tips:

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      4. Show Initiative

      Commit yourself to whatever task you’re given, and make a point of going above and beyond.

      Position yourself so that you’re ready to take on any growth opportunities that present themselves. If you believe you have skills that have gone untapped, find a manager who will give you a chance to prove your worth.

      Accept any stretch assignment that showcases your readiness for advancement. Stay late, and arrive early. Half of getting the best assignments is sticking around long enough to receive them.

      5. Set Yourself Apart by Staying up on Everything There Is to Know About Your Company and Its Competitors

      Subscribe to and read the online trade journals. Become an active member in your industry’s network of professionals. Go to industry conferences, and learn your competitors’ strategies.

      Be the on-the-ground eyes and ears for your organization to stay on top of industry trends.

      6. Go to Every Company Meeting Prepared and Ready to Learn

      A lot of workers feel meetings are an utter waste of time. They’re not, though, because they provide face-time with higher-ups and those in a position to give you the growth opportunities you need.

      Go with the intention of absorbing information and using it to your advantage — including the goals and work styles of your superiors. Respect the agenda, listen more than you speak, and never beleaguer a point.

      Accelerate Your Career Growth Opportunities

      A recent study found that the five predictors of employees with executive potential were: the right motivation, curiosity, insight, engagement, and determination. These qualities help you stand out, but it’s also important to establish a track record of success and to not appear to be over-reaching in your drive to move up in your company.

      Try to see yourself from your boss’s position and evaluate your promote-ability.

      Do you display a passion and commitment toward meeting the collective goals of the company? Do you have a motivating influence with team members and show insight and excellence in all your work?

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      These qualities will place you front and center when growth opportunities arise.

      Use these strategic tips to escalate your opportunities for growth:

      7. Find a Mentor

      With mentorship programs fast disappearing, this isn’t always easy. But you need to look for someone in the company who has been promoted several times and who also cares about your progress.

      Maybe it’s the person who recommended you for the job. Or maybe it’s your direct supervisor. It could even be someone across the hall or in a completely different department.

      Talk to her or him about growth opportunities within your company. Maybe she or he can recommend you for a promotion.

      Not sure how to find the right mentor? Here’s How to Find a Mentor That Will Help You Succeed.

      8. Map out Your Own Growth Opportunity Chart

      After you’ve worked at the company for a few months, work out a realistic growth chart for your own development. This should be a reasonable, practical chart — not a pie-in-the-sky wish list of demands.

      What’s reasonable? Do you think being promoted within two years is reasonable? What about raises? Try to inform your own growth chart with what you’ve heard about other workers’ raises and promotions.

      Once you’ve rigorously charted a realistic path for your personal development within the company, try to talk to your mentor about it.

      Keep refining your chart until it seems to work with your skills and proven talents. Then, arrange a time to discuss it with your boss.

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      You may want to time the discussion around the time of your performance review. Then your boss can weigh in with what he feels is reasonable, too.

      9. Set Your Professional Bar High

      Research shows that more than two-thirds of workers are just putting in their time. But through your active engagement in the organization and commitment to giving your best, you can provide the contrast against others giving lackluster performances.

      Cultivate the hard skills that keep you on the cutting edge of your profession, while also refining your soft skills. These are the attributes that make you better at embracing diverse perspectives, engendering trust, and harnessing the power of synergy.

      Even if you have an unquestionably left-brain career — a financial analyst or biotechnical engineer, for example — you’re always better off when you can form kind, courteous, quality relationships with colleagues.

      Let integrity be the cornerstone of all your interactions with clients and co-workers.

      The Bottom Line

      Growth opportunities are available for those willing to purposely and adeptly manage their own professional growth. As the old adage says,

      “Half of life is showing up.”

      The other half is sticking around so that when your boss is looking for someone to take on a more significant role, you are among the first who come to mind.

      Remember, your career is your business!

      More About Continuous Growth

      Featured photo credit: Zach Lucero via unsplash.com

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