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Leadership in Franchising

Written by Justin Gilbert on Tuesday, 02 March 2021. Posted in People

It is always fascinating to understand why one individual will do better than another when given the same franchise opportunity, training and resources.

Leadership in Franchising

It is always fascinating to understand why one individual will do better than another when given the same franchise opportunity, training and resources.

The author, John C Maxwell famously said: “Everything rises and falls on leadership.”   I believe this gives us an insight into why some business operations do better than others in the same market conditions.  The organisation or franchise with a higher level of leadership will naturally do better.

There are many different dimensions to leadership.  It’s not an exhaustive list but the qualities of a great leader need to include vision, influence, problem solving, integrity and authenticity.

Leadership is a huge topic so for this article let’s examine vision.  Vision means clarity.  Not only of who the individual is but where they want to end up, and the steps needed along the way.  Having this clarity means leaders can choose the right journey for them.  It means they can identify who they are as a person, assess the gaps in their skill set and knowledge and address these to move towards a desired outcome.

When it comes to franchising, from the outset, being able to identify personal strengths and weaknesses helps select the right franchise route and business opportunity is of benefit.  Keep in mind that not every franchise opportunity is equal and therefore, not suited to everyone.  Some are ‘big business’, some are small, and others based on the ability to scale.  

There are four main elements to consider if a franchise opportunity is right for you.   Firstly, your attitude and ability to deal with risk.  Bigger opportunities generally have a greater risk associated with them, but the rewards can also be more significant too.  Not everyone wants or can afford to take these risks so be honest with yourself.  Risk needs to be proportionate and you need to be comfortable.

Secondly consider how much time you have.  Running a franchised business is time consuming.  Will you work on this full time or do you have other commitments?

Thirdly assess your level of experience.  This may relate to running this sort of business, managing people or the particular industry sector.  Will the franchisor’s training take care of any shortfalls or are skills required that take years to acquire? 

Finally consider how much capital you have to invest in the franchise.  This may be from personal sources of income or borrowing.  Are there enough resources available to get the franchise up and running successfully?

Any leadership journey will require individual growth to achieve desired outcomes.  By having a clear vision of the starting point and end point, it will be possible to address any shortfalls in areas that need strengthening.  Steps can be taken to fill the appropriate gaps.

At Papa John’s we select multi-unit franchisees with a clear vision.  They know their strengths and weaknesses and are prepared to create a roadmap or framework for developing any necessary new skills to grow a successful, scalable business.

What John C Maxwell means by: “Everything rises and falls on leadership,” is that the leader determines the potential or limit of the growth of the organisation.  This is not necessarily down to technical expertise but having clarity about the journey to reach a goal and undertaking the right steps along the way to succeed.   Results will never exceed leadership capability, so for organisations to move forwards, that journey must involve individual growth and potential franchisees need to welcome that.

For more information about Papa John’s multi-unit franchise opportunities please see:

About the Author

Justin Gilbert

Justin Gilbert

Justin Gilbert Senior Operations Director Papa John’s UK has 20 years’ experience in the fast-food industry working for well-known brands in different counties and markets. He has a degree in marketing from Johnson C. Smith University and an MBA in Marketing at the Keller Graduate School of Management of DeVry University and a further MBA in Human Resource Management.

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