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Issues that can damage

your recruitment efforts ByIain Martin, Kyros Business Services

but if there are unaddressed issues in your network the chances of recruiting quality franchisees are reduced significantly. Given the amount of educational


material available to those considering investing in a franchise, it would be surprising if a prospective franchisee would not wish to contact your existing franchisees as part of his validation process. Even if you choose not to facilitate this process by providing candidates with contact details for your network, it is relatively easy to track down franchisees through the internet. Why wouldn’t you want candidates to speak to them? I agree that if it is too early in the process, it can be an unnecessary distraction, but in my opinion you should encourage contact by approved candidates because your existing franchisees should be great ambassadors for you. I encourage candidates to ask existing franchisees the following questions.

● What was your initial training like?

● How have you found the on-going support?

● Are you making the money you anticipated?

BFA conference Two broadcasting personalities - Nick Robinson, the BBC political editor, and Gregg Dyke, the former BBC director-general - will be keynote speakers at the BFA annual conference, which is being held this year at London in Senate House, University of London, on July 4-5. Robinson is pictured at his hunting ground - Westminster.

ou may have the best lead generation and management system in the world,

● If you knew what you know now at the time you invested would you have made the same decision? In addition, I make it clear to candidates,

that in every franchise system, there will be varying levels of performance - outstanding performers, mid-range performers, and those performing less well. This pattern never changes but over time, through the quality of the training and support provided, the average performance across the network should steadily improve. If you have a large number of franchisees who would not give positive answers to these questions you will find it very difficult to recruit additional franchisees. A lot of your investment in marketing will be wasted. Far better to address the issues within

the network, and then focus on recruitment. In my experience the fact that there are

problems isn’t necessarily an issue if you respond in the right way. Clearly, if the issues have arisen because a franchisee was misled in the first place that is a different matter. This highlights the desirability of being as open as possible with candidates prior to recruiting them, so that there are only pleasant surprises when they come on board.

However, in the case of many troubled

networks, candidates are going to become aware of possible issues from what they read on the internet through social media forums, etc. So a regular check on the state of your online reputation is essential, the use of Google Alerts is one way of doing this.

I’m often surprised when I hear of franchise networks where there is little, or occasionally, no regular communication between franchisor and franchisees. If there is to be a healthy on-going relationship, then you must ensure that the mechanisms are in place to allow this to happen. These can range from having a team of field-based support managers to regular phone calls and physical/virtual meetings.

The details will be brand specific, but

the importance of being able to get direct feedback, and communicate the good things you’re doing for your franchisees (which should make them feel good about paying their service fees) can’t be over emphasised. As a franchisor, you should be aiming to get to a position where your ongoing fee income covers all fixed central overheads without the necessity to sell franchises.

The more successful you make your

existing franchisees, the more quickly you’ll reach this point and in the process give yourself the best platform for successful recruitment.

i 0870 104 4233

April/May 2013 39

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