Questions to Ask a Prospective Franchisee

Franchising links your expertise and investments as the franchisor with the capital and personal oversight of a franchisee to replicate your model in a new geographical market. A big part of your franchise development strategy should take into consideration the benefits for prospective franchisees. In and of itself, franchising can be one of the least costly methods for aspiring entrepreneurs to get into business – the brand is established, the trademarks are secured, brochures and websites are designed, technology is provided and the model has been through hundreds of adaptations before it is rolled out as a franchise. But you're not looking for just anybody to buy into your business model. So how do you find the right people to run your franchises? A key aspect of building a strong franchise system is finding the right franchisees. The franchisor’s decision to grant a franchise to a franchisee and the prospect’s decision to join a particular franchise system are significant decisions for each and each must take the process to get to that decision very seriously. In my book, I cover some of the key lessons that we’ve learned about franchise development and that's why I've created a helpful tool which includes 12 key considerations for questions to ask to help guide the decision making process, including:
  1. Identify early in the call the purpose of the initial conversation and then get the prospect to confirm that they agree with that purpose.
  2. Ask questions to determine what has occurred to prompt them to look at franchise opportunities and your franchise in particular. Most prospects begin to look at franchise opportunities following some significant event in their lives.
  3. Ask questions to begin to identify the candidate's objectives. What are the "must have" outcomes that the prospect is seeking as they explore franchise opportunities?
  4. Make sure you know who are the decision makers/influencers in the process. If a candidate's spouse will play a critical role, get the spouse involved early.
  5. Ask them how much time they'd like to spend in the business and if they have a budget for the number of hours per week that they can invest in paying attention to the business.
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