The stories are legion about people who’ve breathed new life into their careers with a franchise or even a slew of franchises. But there are some pretty notable misses in the franchise business, as well. Just think Quizno’s or Curves, two franchise systems that, for different reasons, have faltered: Quizno’s, the once promising sandwich shop, is now in bankruptcy; and Curves, fitness centers for women of a certain size, is a shadow of its former self. RELATED: Thinking of starting a franchise? Watch these tutorials! While it’s true that nothing in life is guaranteed, you can do quite a bit to minimize your risk by thoroughly checking into a franchisor’s track record. The federal government requires all franchisors to disclose much useful information in its Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD), and then, of course, the franchisees can tell you firsthand about their experiences with the company. Critical to your background research is your conversation with the franchisor. Most franchisors will have a standard protocol for potential new franchisees that include in-person and telephone meetings with selected executives as well as lots of reading materials to introduce you to the franchisor’s system. You need to use this opportunity to zero in on the issues that are critical to helping a new franchisee succeed.
August 31, 2015