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A franchise is for life, not just for Christmas

Written by Frank Milner on Monday, 06 January 2020. Posted in Franchise Diaries

Ok well, maybe not quite for life. But you get the idea. For many reasons, investing in franchise in the new year is a great decision.

A franchise is for life, not just for Christmas

Ok well, maybe not quite for life. But you get the idea. For many reasons, investing in franchise in the new year is a great decision. But one thing that it definitely shouldn’t be, is a New Year’s resolution. Whilst it’s so easy to get caught up in the buzz of January and the inspiration of turning your life around, you’ve got to engage your head as well as heart to decide whether now is the right time and this is the right path for you. A franchise, just like any new business, is a long-term investment, not something that you should go into on a whim.

The important thing to remember is that most franchise agreements are for five or 10 years, so you can’t just decide to give it up if you lose your motivation. Unlike most people’s resolutions that get abolished within three weeks of pledging them, it’s simply not an option once you’re tied into the contract. The reality of it is that you’d face a hefty fee and potential legal action against you which should be enough to put anyone off making a rash decision.

Of course, starting a business that follows your passion is admirable but, I’m afraid, it’s not always as straightforward as that. If you’re looking at turning a hobby into your everyday, it’s usually very quick to transition from something that you love into something that you loathe. That’s not something that I’d like to endorse. When you’re thinking about putting things into practice, I’d advise to take a step back and assess everything – such as, have I got the skills for this; is there a demand for this in my area; what’s the market like; is it a business with longevity? These are all crucial questions that you should be asking yourself before making any decision.

The Christmas break is a great time, there’s no denying that. You’re away from work, enjoying time with your family and friends and not having to face the dreaded commute every day. It’s understandable then, that very rapidly, the thought of going back to the grind, the routine and the office politics fills you with dismay. People are quick to start searching for an escape route in a bid to continue with the lifestyle they’ve had the pleasure of during the holidays.

This simply isn’t the case. In reality, the first year of business, franchise or not, will likely be the hardest you’ve ever had to face in your working life. It’s a very well-known fact that the initial 12 months of business are tough. It’s a time when you’ll be wearing many hats simultaneously and may feel stretched to your limits. You’ll be focussed on getting enough enquiries, keeping up with these leads and generating income, all whilst still having a grasp on the marketing, financials and operations. It’s a great opportunity, of course, but it’s certainly not an easy ride and definitely not for the faint-hearted.

As a prospect, you’ve got to be aware that every single brand is going to take advantage of the ‘new year, new you’ craze. Just like you see messages around the summer holidays and Christmas, new year propaganda is no different – it’s an extremely common practice. Marketing around new opportunities increases in January to inspire and appeal to you – they’re trying to steer you into thinking that there’s no way you can’t be part of it. Franchisors are no exception but, again, it’s all about taking a step back and assessing the situation. Be hyper aware about the messages that you are consuming and think about what you want. You might think that it’s your ‘time’ because an advert pops up, coincidently, when you’re having second thoughts about work.

With all that being said, new year sure is the right time for some people and it couldn’t be a better springboard. Riding off the back of the Christmas buzz and kick-starting your future is a very exciting time. If you are looking to do it to get the new decade off to a flying start, good luck and here’s to a prosperous 2020!

About the Author

Frank Milner

Frank Milner

Having worked as a stockbroker, built a successful insurance business, acted as a sales coach and then taken on a vice president role at WSI, the digital marketing franchise, Milner has an impressive and varied background in business, franchising, sales and marketing. In his current role as CEO of Tutor Doctor, the private tutoring franchise, he's seen the company grow globally to include 500 franchisees spread across the world, including the UK.

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