Occasionally, franchise owners run into problems running their businesses.
If you decide to become a franchise owner, who should you communicate with to get an issue you’re experiencing resolved?
And most importantly, what if your issue (or issues) aren’t getting taken care of? What should you do? Here are some examples of issues you may experience with methods for resollving them and the people you can contact for help.
Examples Of Issues You May Experience
Here are a few issues you could run into as the owner of a franchise business:
- Equipment failures/malfunctions
- IT/software-related issues
- Low customer foot traffic
- Product/service complaints
- High employee turnover
Remember, as good as the franchise business model is, it’s not a perfect one. And franchisors aren’t perfect. Stuff happens. As an owner, it’s up to you to get things resolved, so your business can run smoothly and profitably.
How To Get Issues Resolved
The best way to get a problem you’re experiencing as a franchise owner handled can be summed up in one word; nicely.
That’s right. If you want to get help from your franchisor with a problem you’re experiencing, you need to ask for it nicely.
Think about when you’re asked for help. Aren’t you more likely to help the person asking if they do so in a nice way?
Who To Talk To At Franchise Headquarters
If you attended a Discovery Day* when you were researching your franchise business, you probably met the department heads. If not, you at least met some of the staff. And when you came back to headquarters for your formal training, you got to meet them again, and most likely, you spent time with them-learning about the franchise operation. They’re the people you should call when you’re experiencing a problem.
For example, let’s say that you’ve been having problems with the computers that were included with your franchise business. In this case, the person to call would be someone in the IT department. And the “someone” you pick should be based on the severity and/or length of time the problem has existed. For instance, if only one of your PC’s is experiencing issues, you should call headquarters and ask for someone in IT. But if your entire network is down, or if you suspect that your business has been hit with malware or a virus, a call to the head of IT should be made, ASAP. Don’t be shy. Don’t feel guilty about calling and asking for help. You’re paying for it (support) every month in the form of royalties.
What If Your Issue Isn’t Being Resolved?
Sometimes, issues aren’t resolved the way they should be. If that’s the case, you have a couple of options:
A. Contact A Franchisee Advisory Council (FAC) member.
FYI: A Franchise Advisory Council is a committee of fellow franchisees who work with the franchisor (and other franchisees) to help improve the system and solve common issues and concerns.
So, if you feel that an issue you’re having isn’t being resolved the right way, you can contact a member of the FAC and see if they can help you get a better result. But, there are no guarantees. In addition, not every franchise system has an FAC. If yours does, this avenue is worth a try.
B. Contact one of the franchise executives
If the problem your having is a big one, and it’s not being resolved to your satisfaction, email and call one of the executives.
Explain what’s going on-in detail, and make sure you tell them that the bottom line is that it’s affecting your bottom line. (And theirs, since the money they get from you is based on your revenue.)
Finally, if you can’t get help from an executive of the company, reach out to the CEO. She needs to know what’s going on. And she has the power to help.
*Non U.S. Government link