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Is Your Franchise Unit Another Job For You?

Exhausted franchisee

Exhausted franchisee

You fed up working for others and have called it quit. With your cash in hand, you set your sight focused on a mission: being a successful entrepreneur.

You revved up, and despite of all the worries and negative comments on you quitting your job, you are start looking for a business to invest in, simply because you feel you don’t have enough experience in starting out yourself. One logical choice you have found: franchising.

You are excited, ready to take the most promising franchise today. You learned that it only took you $20,000 to start with $2,000 projected net profit – 10 months to ROI? A great franchise opportunity, you thought. With $10,000 in hands, you borrow another $10,000 from family and friends. You are ready to go.

You have found a great premise for lease. You have read the UFOC, meet the franchisor and sign the franchise agreement. You were ecstatic that you are officially an entrepreneur and a franchisee. Hopes were high and you could smell the aroma of success.

Then, the reality struck you – You just couldn’t get yourself away from your franchise unit. You are needed 12 hours a day, 7 days a week in your office. You thought all of those are natural because you are on your business start-up phase. However, 6 months have passed, and you are still working long hours – This time, not 12 hours a day anymore, but 14 hours a day, 7 days a week – Thanks to your very successful franchise unit.

Your franchisor is great, the support is fantastic, and your franchise unit’s reputation grows steadily. What’s more sales and profits are growing well. However, you feel unfulfilled and stressed out. What gives?

Typical mistake a franchisee make

If you think that owing a profitable franchise unit is all you want, think again.

At first, you set your eyesight to profitability. However, when your franchise unit has grown so well, you start to think that you dollar made per hour effort you give just doesn’t look and feel right; with the investment you have made, working full-time on your franchise unit is probably not something you are looking for entering franchising.

You want more freedom. You want your business to leverage your resources, in a way that you can have the free time to do whatever you want – To leisure, pursue your passion or start another business.

If a business won’t let you do just that, well, congratulations – You have just created a full-time job for you.

Not trying to be sarcastic, but that what happens a lot. You are a victim of “blinded by entrepreneurship.” You want to be an entrepreneur in such a way that you don’t explore the possibilities to be a certain type of entrepreneur – A certain type that most would want: Absentee business owner.

I’m not suggesting you to stay away to franchises that don’t allow absentee ownership. However, there are some franchises that implicitly require you to work long hours on full-time basis. One example: Franchises that charge high franchise fees with low overall performance – This way, most of your profits are taken to compensate the high franchise fee, leaving you with pennies. Or, on the other hand, the franchise’s performance is so dismal that left you, the franchisee, work extra-hard to make something out of your investment.

One, last advice – It’s okay if you want to devote your life, working 18 hours a day for your franchise unit. The keyword here is “want” not “have to.” If you trap yourself into the realm of “have to,” you need to find a way to reduce the pressure off your back, or if it is possible, sell your franchise unit and start all over again. Consult with your franchisors and fellow franchisees on how to reduce those hour counts.

Ivan Widjaya
Franchise unit is an investment, not a job.
Image by viewoftheworld.

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