Three key characteristics of a successful franchisee

Is it the right time to leave employment and buy a franchise? One thing is certain, there is always something happening in the wider economy

Three key characteristics of a successful franchisee

Currently we are in the throes of an unexpected general election in the UK, the cost-of-living crisis hasn’t gone away, and interest rates are remaining high, so plenty of uncertainties to consider. 

But when will it be your time, if not now? If you are happy in your job and not finding it stressful or making you unhappy, all well and good. However, studies show that increasing numbers of people experience stress in the workplace and research shows that a lack of autonomy can be one of the key drivers.

Interestingly, according to Barclaycard research, one in 12 people in the UK now have a side hustle and a recent Michael Page survey found that 62% of staff across Europe are seriously thinking about or have already started, a side hustle. So there continues to be strong interest in having some degree of autonomy and control over your income as part of the work life balance conundrum. 

Well, I’m not suggesting that buying a franchise can solve all your problems! However, making a proactive decision to take control of your future and starting a business with the support and help of a franchise, will certainly provide autonomy. It could leave you in a stronger position than waiting to find out if your role and employment is secure.

This won’t be a solution for all, not everyone is cut out to be a business owner and of course, some capital is needed to get started.

But for some, especially those who have always wanted to own their own business, franchising can be a way to take control and build an asset.

How much do you know about the franchise relationship and franchising, could you be a successful franchisee?

As a first step to finding out more, the British Franchise Association is a great source of information about franchising and provides a free online training resource to give you some background. You can also find out which franchisors are members and have a look at their profiles for more information.

As well as finding out about franchising, you need to think carefully about what you want to do. Some people coming into franchising take the opportunity to move in a completely different direction from their previous employment, whilst others prefer to stick to an industry sector they know well.

Whatever you decide, you should think about your transferrable skills, what experience do you have which could be useful in your own business?

How much money can you put into this new venture? You will need to have a stake to invest and can often borrow the rest of the funding if needed. There are a wide range of investment levels in franchising, so you can narrow things down to focus on what you are able to afford.

And be realistic about your energy levels, commitment, and ambition – working for yourself is not for the faint-hearted, there will still be lots of hard work needed to be successful. However, a good franchise will provide training, support, and a structure to follow which will help.

So, what makes a successful franchisee? There are plenty of skills and attributes that have an impact but three top qualities which successful franchisees demonstrate are:


Whatever industry sector, whatever franchise you chose, you will always need to put in effort, energy and commitment to make it a success. If you think buying a franchise will deliver the business to you on a plate with minimal effort from you, then success will probably be out of reach! 

Successful franchisees are ambitious for their business and determined to make it a success. And success isn’t always about sales, it can be about the service you deliver, the sector your business operates in, or maybe providing employment and development to your team. You decide what success means to you.

People skills

Even in these days of AI, technology advances and robotics, for the vast majority of businesses, people skills will be core to your success. It doesn’t matter whether you are an introvert or an extrovert, you can find your own way of relating to others and delivering great service to your customers. Even if you don’t have any staff to manage, you will still need to understand what your customers want and need. You will also need to work with your franchisor and their team who will help you to build your franchise.


I always say to prospective franchisees that they should get excited about the franchise business they are looking at. If you are going to give up on corporate life and employment with all its perks, including a regular salary every month, then it needs to be for something you will enjoy. 

The famous saying ‘When you enjoy what you do, work becomes play’ (lots of variations of that saying, quoting people from Gandhi to Mark Twain to Confucius, take your pick!) definitely has some truth in it. 

Building your business with all the support that being part of a strong franchise network brings, should be fun as well as hard work so look for something that interests and excites you when you are choosing a franchise!

Cathryn Hayes
Cathryn Hayes