Franchise Obligation Is a Two-Way Street

Dear Franchisee:

It hasn’t been that long since you signed on the dotted line, paid a hefty franchise fee and committed to sending monthly royalty checks. I’ve got to believe you did this because you thought franchising would give you a better chance than going it alone, and you were right. At least you would have been, if you were now taking advantage of all those things you paid for.

Now that you are my “customer,” you think you are always right. You want a relationship that requires me to do all the giving and all the listening. If you would acknowledge that this is a partnership, if you would listen, too, here is what I’d tell you:

We know what we are doing. We’ve been doing it for years. Our model gets results when you follow it. If you need help, you have access to subject-matter experts at the corporate level, as well as fellow franchisees.

Instead, you have decided to go it alone. You make excuses for your lack of participation and tell us we don’t understand “your unique set of circumstances.” You may find it hard to believe, but your circumstances are no more unique than those of our other owners. The only thing that’s different is your (in)ability to ask for help, listen to advice and apply what your learn.

I guess your business experience in a completely different industry is all you need to succeed. Never mind the fact that you didn’t sell anything in the corporate world. Don’t worry that you don’t know the first thing about how to hire and manage sales people, or that you’ve never spent a day on the manufacturing floor. I’m sure all of your pricing is based on better profit models than we could ever provide and that you know exactly what to look for from the reports generated from your point of sales system.

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  • Bill Farquharson

    Two "thumbs down" votes without a comment? Come on, people, speak up!

  • Kelly Mallozzi

    The thums down might be aimed at the tone. It’s right up my alley, in face several months ago I wrote a blog called "I’m calling B&%$S*IT" that was ranting at people about saying they don’t have time for anything. I guess some people don’t like being confronted about stuff they know in their hearts is true.


  • Anonymously speaking

    People may not realize they can comment anonymously. To do so, log in as a guest instead of through one of your accounts, then make up a name like I did here (anonymously speaking)

    Having worked in a few franchising environments, I know there are some strong opinions on this topic.

    Go ahead and speak up anonymously – this could be a great conversation.

  • Nice Guy

    I used to work for a franchiser and we had these conversations (internally) regularly. Of course, we didn’t say it this way, but maybe we should have. We lost a lot of people in the past few years and a hard conversation might have changed things around. Somebody should print this and hand it to every person thinking about buying into a franchise.

  • Bill Farquharson

    …and the score after one week is 7-4 in favor.

  • Bill Farquharson

    There is a FANTASTIC discussion on LinkedIn’s Franchise Professional’s group. You’ll have to be a member to review it, but I highly recommend spending the time.