What Your Life Will Look Like As A Franchisee

You’ve decided to become a franchisee. Now that you’ve made that decision, you should have a mental picture of what your business is going to look like-with you at the helm.

All of us visualize things. If it’s something as exciting as starting your own franchise business, the mental picture you have is what keeps you going. It’s what keeps you moving towards your goal.

Let’s see if your visual matches with the things you’ll actually be doing as a franchisee.

Your Life As A Franchisee

Once you’ve paid your upfront franchise fee, signed your franchise agreement, secured your loan and have gone through formal training at headquarters, your focus will be on getting your business up and running.

Your Location

If you’ve purchased a franchise that requires you to lease retail space, you’ll have plenty of work to do before you can open for business.

You’ll have to secure the space. That’s going to require meetings with commercial real estate brokers, landlords and lawyers. Expect to get aggravated during the negotiations; there are lots of details and some landlords can be tough to deal with. Make sure you hire a lawyer who’s familiar with commercial real estate contracts.

Build Out

Once you’ve signed a lease, it’s “build out” time. This is when your space will be customized for your franchise business’s needs.

Lots of different workers will be coming and going. You’ll need to be in your store to supervise and to make sure everything is happening on schedule. Your franchisor will also help-as they want your franchise up and running just as bad as you do.

In addition to making sure the build out is going smoothly, you’ll be working on a lot of the behind the scenes stuff that’s required to open a business.

You’ll be filling out all types of paperwork that has to do with taxation, labor, and safety regulations to name just a few. You’ll be interviewing potential employees. You’ll order signage. Inventory. The list goes on. Until...

You’re Open For Business

You’re finally open! It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for. The Grand Opening!

Potential customers are milling about. Some of them are buying stuff. Your cash register is starting to ring. (It’s a beautiful sound) And you’re running around like a crazy person.

An employee can’t figure out how to price out bulk dog biscuits, so you run over to help him out. Your daughter (who’s ringing things out at the front of your store) is yelling that the register she’s on is out of receipt paper. You dash over to help her insert a new roll of paper as the line gets longer and the customers grow impatient. You’re sweating. And before you know it, the day is over. What a whirlwind!

Days Turn Into Weeks

The first few days are rough; there’s no sugar-coating it. You don’t really know what you’re doing. It’s not that your training was lousy-it’s just that nothing can really prepare you for life as a franchisee.

Suddenly, days turn into weeks. You’re starting to get in the groove. You’re starting to feel like you actually do know what you’re doing. Sales are good. Your employees are starting to know what they’re doing, too. This “franchise ownership” thing isn’t too bad. Sure the work is hard and the hours are long. But it’s your business.

One Year Later

You’re a full-fledged franchisee.

You’re still working long hours. (12-14 hours a day)

But things are good. You’re breaking even now. (Which is a good thing because profitability comes next.) As a matter of fact, things are looking so good, you’ve been talking about scouting out another location. Which means another lease negotiation. Another small business loan. More stress.

Except this time around you have experience. You know what to expect. You know how to open a new franchise.

You know what life as a franchisee looks like. Because you’re living it. And you wouldn’t trade it for anything.

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