Sure, there might be some great franchises out there. And there might be some low-cost franchises. But everyone knows if you want to make real money you need to invest a lot. Right? Wrong. There is no direct relationship between the amount you invest in a franchise and the amount you can expect to earn. That’s right. Though it comes as a surprise to most people, the amount you might earn with a franchise has nothing to do with how much you need to invest. There really are some great low-cost franchises. There are a few reasons for this. The biggest reason is the amount of the investment is largely a function of the kind of industry you are in. It’s been widely reported a McDonald's costs over a million dollars to open. If you think about it for a minute, that makes sense. To open a McDonald's, the owner usually builds a building. You’re already out of the “low investment” arena, but you aren’t done. You’d still need to pave a parking lot, put in a drive-through lane, and put up that big golden arches sign. All of that is expensive, sure. But we haven’t even talked about the inside of the building – tables, chairs, cash registers, freezers, grills, and on and on. It’s all those asset costs that drive the investment. That’s what makes restaurants one of the most expensive categories of franchises. You can say the same thing about any type of retail operation. You usually have to rent expensive space. You have to build out the space – carpet and shelves and lighting and signs – it all adds up. But now consider the other end of the spectrum – the low-cost franchises. What about businesses that don’t require expensive real estate? What about businesses that don’t need parking lots and inventory and signs? There are plenty of franchises that are service businesses. The owner works out of their home, or maybe out of a small, inexpensive office. Without the need to build and equip a large restaurant or retail space, the investment is much, much lower. How much? Many top opportunities have a total, all-in investment of under $150,000. Sometimes much under. Senior care is a great example. This is a business, just based on demographics, is projected to grow steadily far into the future. It is a rewarding, recession resistant business. It has a very high income potential. Many franchisees earn a net income of $300,000 or more! The opportunity is high, but the investment is low. What are some other low-cost franchises? There are tutoring businesses and coaching businesses and painting businesses and direct mail business, and many others – all of which have investments not much more than $100,000. And many, many of these franchisees earn large, six figure incomes. If you’re interested in exploring franchises focus on finding a business that you like. Don’t worry about how you’ll raise a million dollars. Chances are, you won’t need that much.
Maybe you like your job, but you’re just not where you want to be financially. What do you do? Apply for a position with a different company? Or approach your boss and ask for a salary increase?
The ability to negotiate a salary increase can place you in a better financial position: extra money can help you qualify for mortgage loans or refinancing, or if you’re trying to build a rainy day fund, a raise can jump-start these efforts. However, it’s important to research and know your value before approaching your boss.
In other words, you can only approach the conversation with a fair number in mind—based on the average salary for professionals in your industry with your experience and skill set. Of course, it isn’t enough to only research your value. You need to know the best ways to approach your boss.
Here are four things you should never say when asking for a raise:
1. Don’t Threaten To Quit
Some employees think they can get the upper hand by threatening to quit their job. However, this isn’t recommended, even if you’re prepared to follow through with the threat. Remember, the goal is to get on your manager’s good side, not tick them off. If you approach the meeting with an abrupt or aggressive attitude, your boss may not respond favorably—they may actually call your bluff!
A better approach is to explain how much you enjoy your work. Let your boss know that you're interested in growing with the company. Next, state your argument for a salary increase. Be professional and keep your negotiations brief.
2. Don’t Mention A Co-Worker’s Salary
If you learn that a co-worker in a similar position earns more than you, don’t mention this when speaking with your boss. There may be valid reasons why your co-worker earns more. Maybe they have an advanced degree, or maybe they took additional courses to improve their skill set. Then again, maybe they have more experience than you. Don’t immediately assume that your employer is giving you the short end of the stick.
Rather than bring up a co-worker's salary, you could say:
"I've been researching the going rate for this position, and the average salary for workers with my education and experience is _____. I feel that I've been doing a great job and would like to discuss increasing my salary."
3. Don't Choose The Wrong Time
Don’t ask your boss for a raise out of the blue, and you certainly shouldn’t ask during a meeting on an unrelated topic. Once you’ve completed your research, schedule an appointment to meet with your boss privately. Additionally, prepare for this meeting by practicing responses. In all likelihood, your boss will question why you want a salary increase. The way you answer this question can determine the outcome.
Prior to this meeting, compile a list of all your accomplishments during the last 12 months. When your boss questions your reasons, be ready to run down this list and mention any other selling points. For example, you can mention any classes you've recently taken, and if it's been years since your last raise, bring this to your manager's attention.
4. Don’t Whine About Your Personal Problems
Do you have debt? Do you need to complete repairs around your house? Was your spouse laid off? These are all valid reasons to negotiate a salary increase. Understand, however, that your personal problems are not your manager’s problems. They no doubt will empathize or sympathize with your situation, but you shouldn’t expect them to automatically fix your problems by increasing your salary. Not that you shouldn’t ask for a higher salary, but keep the focus on your performance.
You could say:
"In the past ___ months I've taken on several new responsibilities (list them), and I know that you were satisfied with many of my suggestions and changes."
Getting paid your worth can improve job satisfaction. And if you’re already completing assignments outside your job description, why not take a chance and approach your boss? They just might comply with your request. Just remember to avoid making these four mistakes when asking for the raise you deserve!
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This article was originally published at an earlier date.