Lots of people dream of owning their own business. No longer punching a clock, having to worry about being late, or counting sick days sounds like true freedom, doesn’t it? Although there are perks to owning your own business, there are some pitfalls that one can fall into as a result of not being prepared.
The prospect of owning a franchise can be especially tricky, as it comes with its own unique set of rules and regulations that comes from the company that you wish to be associated with. Franchising is wonderful in that it allows you to follow proven systems of success, but beware of these 5 common mistakes that you can avoid when starting out on the road to entrepreneurship:
Mistake #1: Failing to understand the market
If you are opting for trendy or something that interests few people, you are not likely to be successful when you take on a franchise. You must think about supply and demand, and project ahead to see if there will be a customer base for that which you are trying to sell. Are there local competitors that might take your customers? Is location going to be an issue, and do you see this being a lasting market demand? Answering these questions ahead of time will give you some insight into whether your franchise will have staying power.
Mistake #2: Failing to network with and learn from other franchise owners
So many people take on franchises with stars in their eyes and hope in their hearts; they talk to friends and family about how excited they are to start this new venture, yet they fail to seek out the one valuable source of advice that they can draw from—other franchise owners. Talking to someone who has been there, done that will be one of the most critical things you can do to prepare yourself for the challenges that lie ahead. Get the info, get prepared, and start your business ahead of the game.
Mistake #3: Failing to realize you won’t be truly independent
While you are associated with a franchise brand, you will not have complete autonomy over how you run your business. In order to benefit from that brand label, you will have to surrender—-at least at first—-to how the franchise owner wants to build your branch. There will be plenty of time for putting individual touches on your product or service within franchise guidelines; trust the franchisor to get your business up and running, and let time take care of the rest.
Mistake #4: Failing to learn the system
Your job is not to re-invent or bring innovations to the current system. Your job is to let the system work for you. Learn to implement systems of operation and follow training manuals; your long-term plan for success includes following a system that has already been proven to work.
Mistake #5: Failing to walk before running
The incredibly exciting part about franchising is that you can open as many branches as you can handle—-hold on, though! Walking with one or two successful branches is essential before taking on additional responsibilities. The more people you have in your employ, the more likely it is that you’ll face challenges with how each branch is being run. Be patient, prove yourself with one or two branches, and expand when you are able to successfully manage your first few. Time and patience are key to creating lasting empires.
You are on an exciting pathway–a pathway to independence, financial security, and expansion. Doing it right will ensure that you have a business that stands the test of time and market volatility; follow the proven systems that have been given to you, and you’ll see success like you’ve never dreamed!