Making a career transition from the corporate world to franchise ownership can come with varying emotions – uncertainty, eagerness, indecision, and anticipation, to name a few. While it may feel a bit unnerving to begin something new, knowing what to expect can make the transition easier.
Franchise ownership comes with a range of benefits that a career in corporate America oftentimes can’t offer. While it may feel like a change of pace, depending on the industry you are coming from and transitioning to the one you want to enter, the support offered by franchise systems can be the safety net appreciated by new franchisees as they make the switch.
If you are someone looking to make a transition and pursue an entrepreneurial venture, here are some essential tips:
DO YOUR RESEARCH ON FRANCHISE SYSTEMS
Researching your new potential opportunity may seem obvious, but you may be surprised at the number of components involved and the time and effort it takes to fully comprehend each one. Not only should you understand how your desired franchise works, but you will want to know your responsibilities, financing options, territories available, training opportunities, construction, etc. While you may not be able to uncover detailed information about a specific franchise system in your research phase, you can begin to understand the inner workings of a franchise to gain a better sense of what lies ahead.
Keep in mind that entering a franchise system means much of the initial work to get the business started is mostly taken care of, which is one of the many benefits of entering a franchise business. In other words, you can skip some of the parts about opening a business that a person beginning and operating a start-up would need to consider.
REFLECT ON YOUR BUSINESS STRENGTHS AND GOALS
Transitioning from a corporate career to franchising likely means you are looking for something more fitting to your lifestyle. This takes courage, which is a skill that any good business owner possesses. As you transition in your career, consider other strengths and soft leadership qualities that can make you a great franchise owner. To run a successful franchise location, you need to have the skills that will make you a great leader and allow you to build relationships with customers and your community. It’s a good idea to consider what skills you may need to focus on more to better prepare you for the future of your business.
As you move into franchise ownership, you also want to ensure that the business is right for you and that it fits with your lifestyle and goals. You want your career switch to franchising to be successful. This is your time to really personalize your career and steer where you want it to go. Do not rush this process – determine your goals and see which franchise system aligns the most.
CONSIDER INCOME AND BENEFITS
Your corporate job has a consistent income and likely insurance benefits. These two factors are extremely beneficial to have and rely on. When becoming a franchise owner, these factors are going to be very different from what you are used to – there are no longer automatic insurance benefits and earning profit may take a bit of time after opening the doors to your location.
Along your franchise ownership journey, you will plan how you to obtain similar benefits from your corporate job, such as health insurance and other income streams.
BUILD YOUR SUPPORT SYSTEM
You are not in business alone. Not only can your franchisor offer support, but you can rely on your friends, family, or even a partner! In any case, you are going to have people you can rely on. Remember, switching careers is not always stress-free, but letting your support system in on the process can make it much more enjoyable.
You can also turn to other franchise owners in the network for support. These are the people who have experienced what you are going through and can often assist with any questions you may have or simply talk to you about the day-to-day life and operations of a franchisee.
DETERMINE YOUR FINANCES AND FINANCING
Before jumping into a franchise, you must ensure you can qualify as a franchise owner. As you consider the franchise businesses you are interested in, be sure to thoroughly understand what is required in terms of finances. Items such as net worth and liquid capital are important to franchisors, as they want to ensure their franchise owners can start on the best foot forward to achieve the utmost success.
Do your research on the websites of franchises you are interested in to see what is reported as most franchisors will display this information publicly. There will also be initial fees as well as ongoing franchise fees that you will need to factor in when budgeting and investing.
Take the time to research the different financing options offered to prospective franchisees. There are several avenues you can take when financing, so do not make the common financing mistake of not considering all possible options or looking for funding too late.
CONSIDER DIFFERENT FRANCHISE OWNERSHIP STYLES
This will vary depending on the franchise, but there can be different franchise ownership styles you can consider. For example, semi-absentee or absentee franchise ownership involves less (or no) time commitment compared to more involved franchisees. The type of style you choose will depend on your business goals, experience with franchising, and stage in life among several other factors. If you choose a more absentee approach, you may want to consider staying in your corporate job for a while if you can handle both. This can be a helpful approach as you make that transition to franchising fulltime.
MAKING THE DECISION TO PURSUE FRANCHISING
There are many factors to consider when moving from a corporate job to franchising. Always keep in mind the benefits of investing in a franchise system and what it can offer you and your lifestyle. Allow your passion to be what drives you through this decision.
If you are interested in learning more about franchising, be sure to check out our Why Dogtopia page. Take a few moments to look through our detailed FAQ page and details about the pet industry and your investment. If you think you are a good fit, fill out our online inquiry form and a member of our team will reach out.