Things To Consider Before Starting Your Own Franchise

Finding the right Canadian franchise for you can be an exciting yet intimidating prospect. Before you make the big leap from working a corporate gig to becoming your own boss, here's what you should consider to maximize your chances of a smooth transition and success.

Your Franchise Should Reflect Your Work Style

The franchise you purchase has to provide the right kind of stimulation to keep you focused and personally satisfied. All too often, as noted by Cliff Ennico of “Entrepreneur” magazine, people don't account for what will happen if their franchise isn't stimulating enough or has required job aspects that they find unpleasant.

Think about what kind of worker you are beyond the basic ideals of dedication and responsibility, and then ask yourself these relevant questions: Do you like to keep busy with manual labor or do you need a franchise where you can hire someone else to do the physical work? If you're the kind of person who thrives on challenge, is the franchise you're considering dynamic enough for you? Similarly, if you prefer stability, are you looking only at franchises with static models?

Review every single aspect of your role as an owner in the franchises you're interested in to ensure it lines up with the type and style of work you enjoy. The wrong fit can lead to boredom, diminished success and just plain unhappiness with your work life.

You Have to Live by the Rules

One of the most exciting benefits of owning a franchise in Canada is the ability to be your own boss. No more corporate suits telling you what to do and more free time sounds like a good deal all the way around, but you must remember franchises have rules, too. As an owner, you'll have to follow all the rules set by the franchise you've chosen. Rules vary widely by business, but they can involve everything from product stocking requirements to setting how many hours you must work in your location each week.

A franchise's regulations are there for a major reason, according to CNBC: rules maintain consistency. Customers expect a brand's goods and services to be of the same quality no matter what location they've chosen, so if you deviate, you may run into trouble with both your customer base and your franchisor.

Get an Inside Look First

Any franchisor owner or marketer can give you financials and talk up the business - that is their job. While things like financial health and past performance are important, you also need an inside glimpse of what it's like to work in the franchise on a daily basis before it becomes such a huge part of your life.

Talk with current (and former) franchise owners about their experiences. Shadowing a current owner for at least a week is a great way to see what the franchise is like from the inside. “Forbes” recommends speaking to past owners about why they left and asking them if they'd ever return to the franchise. Take the time to consider what you've seen and heard before making a final decision about whether that franchise is right for you.

While it's impossible to anticipate every situation you'll encounter as a franchise owner, you can help prevent surprises by evaluating both the franchise as a business and yourself as a candidate before signing on the dotted line. The right franchise is out there, and it's up to you to find it!

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