How franchising enables the next generation of entrepreneurs

December 15, 2018

In this article Pip Wilkins, chief executive of the BFA, explains why franchising gives budding entrepreneurs the chance to spread their innovative wings.

What is entrepreneurship? According to the Business Dictionary, entrepreneurship is defined as the capacity and willingness to develop, organise and manage a business venture along with any of its risks in order to make a profit. Franchising fits perfectly within this paradigm.

Franchising not only promotes entrepreneurial vision, but it actively encourages it, and offers wider opportunities to larger demographics than other areas of the business world.While franchisees must go by a model which has proven to be successful and has become established, that doesn’t suggest that you can’t create your own vision for the future of your business, one that you are responsible for, and whose success lies solely with you.

A social business
Building a business alone and from scratch is no easy feat, and while it might be something any entrepreneur wants to tick off their bucket list, franchising could be a great alternative for those who don’t wish to do this.

Laura Bones, the co-owner of InXpress Derby, a specialist courier service with her husband Andy, knows first hand how helpful the advice and guidance of her franchise is. And while Laura receives this support, she and her husband are still able to make the business their own, making for an ideal balance.

As Laura explains: “Starting a new business isn’t easy. But being able to learn from one of the biggest franchises in the network is an inspiration. We have just moved into a larger office, and have employed our first member of staff. It’s our business, but we are not trying to do it alone.”

The franchising sector is renowned for being helpful and supportive, with many franchisors offering workshops, training courses and mentorships to fully support their franchisees and keep their skills and acumen sharp.

Not only do you have the support of a franchisor, but also their network of franchisees. All of them have been in the same boat as you, know what pitfalls to avoid, and are willing to lend a helping hand. As you are in the same franchise, you can trust their help and opinion, knowing you are all working to achieve success for the business.

Can you be creative?
Some entrepreneurs might be worried that joining a franchise will limit their ideas and creativity, but this should not be the case. Becoming part of a franchise means becoming a part of a network – a team, a family.

Most franchisors welcome engagement with their franchisees (as they should), as they know this is essential to the growth of a business and any franchisor worth their salt knows to take full advantage of their innovation.

One franchisor who recognises the value of franchisees is Julie Clabby, who co-founded Busylizzy, a club that offers pregnancy and postnatal fitness sessions for both mothers and babies. Julie holds quarterly forums in order to discuss business elements, pitch ideas and overcome any issues. This is key to developing the business and allows everyone the opportunity to be heard.

Julie comments: “Running a business requires agility, with the ability to change and keep moving with your market. Our franchisees love the Busylizzy brand and it is exciting that we can all work together to shape our futures. The Busylizzy forums have resulted in immense success, with new classes being introduced as a result of some of the discussions and ideas from the franchisees.”

Related: Franchising Best Practices 2019

Spreading your wings
Franchising has many opportunities for those who are hungry for more, with franchisees able to own and operate multiple units and/or franchises as a way of growing their empire and building on their business.

A young entrepreneur who has grown his business portfolio is Almas Adam, who opened up a Right at Home, a provider of premium quality care and support services to adults and older people. Now, he owns multiple franchise businesses in London and believes franchising has provided the ultimate entrepreneurial opportunity.

Almas adds: “For young entrepreneurs, like myself, franchising is an ideal model for developing our own businesses. You can learn from the franchisor to develop the knowledge and interpersonal skills required to build a successful and sustainable business.”

This is why more young people are interested and excited by the opportunities franchising brings, and shows why there is so much diversity in the franchise sector.

Source: Franchise World

Why entrepreneurs should consider franchising

September 26, 2018

Pip Wilkins, CEO of the British Franchise Association, explains why franchising may be an ideal route for you to go down as a businessperson.

When choosing a career, do you go for passion or wealth? It’s the classic Catch-22 of whether you would rather have a job that you love but with a terrible pay or have a job you that hate but pays very well. According to a YouGov poll that was conducted in the summer of 2017, 64% of people would choose the former. However it shouldn’t have to be one or the other – it is possible to love what you do and get paid well for it. Step one is knowing what you are good at and passionate about, step two is turning that into a way of getting paid what you’re worth.

If you’re genuinely thinking about a career switch, then you should consider franchising as a possibility. It’s an industry with hundreds of successful business models and a way to turn an ambition into a reality. You get to be your own boss but also experience being part of a larger network of franchisees which offer help, support and training.

Related: Franchising Market Research 101 – A Complete Market Research Guide for UK Franchisees

It can be scary to think about leaving your job, old or young, well paid or not, it will always be risky decision as it is unpredictable. To make you feel a bit more confident, consider these facts: franchising in the UK has continuously seen around 90% of franchisees being profitable while the failure rate less than 5% over five years. Compare this to non-franchised small businesses where the failure is as high as 91% in its first year, franchising is looking pretty good. Most franchisees are also reporting to be returning a decent profit, with the average franchisee turnover continuing to rise, and over half of franchise business now claiming an annual turnover of more than £250,000, according to the latest bfa/Natwest report.

People go into franchising with all sorts of backgrounds and find a business that they love, even with no prior professional experience, from ex-military going into real estate to someone with years of PR experience going into educational programmes, franchising offers a platform to find and join a business you like. As long as you possess an ambitious energy to make that change to your life, you will succeed in achieving what you want. A lot of franchisors look for franchisees with drive and a desire to learn; it’s not always about doing what you already know and sticking with it. To own a business, you must be willing to adapt and develop professionally, and an ability to overcome challenges and solve problems. However, don’t forget about your transferable skills, know where your strengths lie and find a balance between this and doing what you enjoy.

There is a wealth of information about becoming a franchisee and what to expect. You won’t be leaving one job to just go and work for someone else. As a franchisee, you will be your own boss, working a business concept that has a proven system. Don’t be afraid to chase you dreams, or as Louise Krupski, a franchisee for Monkey Music put it: “Don’t wait for everything to be perfect before you get on with it – just get on with it.”

Source: Elite Business Magazine