You have successfully completed the program at our Franchising University! Before you step out into the franchising world, our franchise expert, Robert Bond, personally congratulates you on taking the first steps toward buying a franchise!
Dear Prospective Franchisee,
At its best, purchasing a franchise allows you to avoid many of the pitfalls involved with starting a business from the ground up and improves the odds of success.
At its worst, if the evaluation and investment decision is sloppy, franchising can be a nightmare. If things don't work out, you cannot simply walk away. You are still responsible for the long-term lease on your retail space, the large bank loan that you took to finance the business, and/or the binding, long-term financial obligation to the franchisor. All aspects of your life will likely be affected, as financial burdens inevitably spread to your marriage and even to one's own self-esteem.
Your ultimate success as a franchisee will be determined by 2 factors:
Keep in mind that, in the final analysis, it is up to you - not the franchisor - as to how successful you will be.
Remember, this is not a game!
Don't take short-cuts. Listen carefully to what the franchisor and your advisors tell you. Don't think you are so clever or independent that you can't benefit from the advice of outside professionals. Don't assume that the franchisor's required guidelines regarding the amount of investment, experience, temperament, etc., somehow don't apply to you. Don't accept any promises or "understandings" from the franchisor that are not committed in writing to the franchise agreement. Invest the additional time to talk to and/or meet with as many franchisees in the system as you can. The additional front-end investment you make, both in time and money, will pay off handsomely if it saves you from making a poor investment decision. This is one of the few times in business when second chances are rare. Make the extra effort to do it right the first time.
Good luck and Godspeed.