|Small Business Information|
Should I Franchise or Not?
A reader of one of my online sessions asked should he franchise his business or not. He had set up a service business and was getting ready to expand and wanted to know if franchising was a good potential strategy for this. How do I franchise my business? There are many criteria for franchising and if you have ever thought you might wish to franchise your business then this advice could be of value to you:
You cannot determine if you should franchise or not until you have perfected your operation, any thing less than perfection will be doing a disservice to your future company and franchisees. I am not advocating waiting until it is actually perfect, for that day may not ever come, but rather making that a goal of your business building before deciding to franchise or not. Go read the "E-Myth."
It is possible you might be pre-empted as your profits will be taken by attorneys and lawyers due to the increased regulations in franchising. We have issues in the US where workforce is often under the impression of the right to be irresponsible and if they do not work hard and fail they will most likely blame you and sue. So many factors to consider and many are not in any books. I would say; you need to start with about a million dollars solely dedicated to the franchise part of the business to get it to work. Not including all the prototypes or company owned stores or operations.
There is an overload of information on this topic, but anyone truly interested in franchising needs to study up on these methods. If you can; I recommend some good books or articles on this subject you might wish to read:
The Franchise Bible
Trips and Traps When Buying a Franchise
Franchising for Dummies
Franchising and Licensing
I have read and own probably 30 books on the subject all have tid bits but these ought to be a good start. If this it not sufficient, a longer list can be made available from www.franchising.org . Remember most people write books for a reason; if it is written by an attorney it will have legal slant, an entrepreneur will have an optimistic and promotional slant, a consultant will have a strategic slant. You see? The book most important in my professional opinion after you have franchised would be; "The Franchise Relationship" www.franchiserelations.com .
If you are considering the franchise format to expand your currently successful business then these are aspect and information you should be well versed in to make it all work. I wish you the best of luck and continued success.
"Lance Winslow" - If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; www.WorldThinkTank.net/wttbbs
Where Can I Get Clients From?
The following tips have come from a wide variety of sources; some from other successful businesses we know, some from our Home-Based and Small Business Support Group meetings and some we've developed by trial and error.
Contract Cleaners ? A Guide for Business Part 2
In the first part of this article I put forward 7 questions that I believed were important to ask of your potential cleaning company. In this article I will explain the relevance of the first two questions and the answers you get to you as a business.
How to Write a Credit Policy for Your Business
The book, "Become the Squeaky Wheel," by New Hampshire author Michelle Dunn, says the different ways people use and extend credit makes or breaks your credit policy and bottom line, which could result in less or more sales and money for your business.
Shortcuts Will Kill Your Business
Think of your business as a living, breathing, organism. It requires you to give it a large portion of your time and effort in order for it to grow and flourish.
Quality Controls for Franchising Companies Sample Outline
Quality control in franchising companies is paramount and all franchising companies must have strict guidelines to insure consistency. To insure this takes place throughout your franchise system you must make this a policy in your confidential operations manual. Your first step should be to make an outline of your policies and reasons behind them, since you might need help getting started please feel free to print this article and modify the outline below to best fit your specific business and vision for your company.
Implementing an Internship Program
CONSIDERING COMPANY NEEDS: In identifying your needs for the internship, you need to examine the chief responsibilities of the position. And the broader they are, the more flexibility you will be giving yourself and the intern. Decide upon how often you will need the intern. Gauge any time factor related to the responsibilities you are assigning. Remember that the intern will not be as experienced as a regular employee would, he or she will need additional time to get acquainted with computer and other systems, your style of office management, and other on-the-job factors. Next figure your ability to offer a stipend. Not only will offering money bring you more qualified applicants, but it will suitably reward the intern. Many managers find it easy to offer a stipend in terms of travel expenses or living expenses, while also supplying miscellaneous costs.
Money Series 1: Who Takes Your Money
Your business is making profits, but where is the cash? It seems that someone has taken away your money. Your bank account is still the same, and your personal wealth is still the same. There must be someone that took your money. Based on my over 18 years of professional experience and study, there are 8 persons that take away your money without your knowing...
Bogus Investor and Consumer Complaints and Consumer Misrepresentation
Like most regulatory bodies in the United States, the Federal Trade Commission gets investor and consumer complaints. But how much of these are actually real? These agencies then act on such complaints and increase regulations. Let's look at the Franchising industry for example. The complaints of fraud are non-existent for the most part in franchising, yet the FTC franchise group is dead set on making more regulations which in turn stifle the industry.
How to Create an Employee Manual
Large corporations use employee manuals to both educate employees about policies and protect themselves legally. Whether or not you need an employee manual is your decision, though it can be a great tool for keeping your policies consistent.
Excuses Franchisees Make; When They Violate Exclusive Territory Agreements
One of the biggest excuses franchisees of home based and serviced based franchises make when violating their exclusive franchise agreement with their franchisor and fellow franchisees is: My Family Works There. As a franchisor, I cannot believe how many times neighboring franchisees steal each others clientele or work outside their exclusive franchise area. This jeopardizes trust within the franchise system between franchisees and franchisors.
Promote Yourself More Successfully
One of the great challenges for independent professionals and small businesses, especially when starting out, is generating visibility to ultimately lead to generating sales.
Venus Transit - and Small Business?
On June 8, 2004, the world witnessed what no one living today had ever seen... VENUS - the planet of Love, Beauty and Human Unity - transitting across the face of the Sun.
Lawyers Everywhere Telling Regulators What Laws to Make
The Federal Trade Commission decided to sit down and revamp the franchise rule of the 1970's. They started to do it in 1995 and postponed it then had some comments collected in 1997 and then in 1999. One thing, which is very interesting is most all the comments came from attorneys who specialize in either suing franchisors or suing franchisees. A little conflict of interest isn't it. Worse off; the government looks at their comments closely when determining new rules of law. Lawyers are out to make money suing business people, not helping free-enterprise, few of them have ever worked an honest day in their lives.
Small Business - Is The Accounting Profession Ripping Them Off?
My 16 year-old daughter said, "Gee Dad! You look just like an accountant" And she wasn't being complimentary. Accountants are perceived to be boring, stodgy and conservative. Over the years we've been the butt of many jokes. I've heard them all. Why did the accountant cross the road? Because he looked up the file and that's what they did last year! Ha Ha! What do accountants use as a contraceptive? Their personality! Ha Ha!" Why do accountants become accountants? They don't have the charisma to be undertakers! Ha Ha! What do they call an accountant at the bottom of the sea? A bloody good start! Ha Ha! I think I am the exception. That's why I've begun to call myself a business strategist and counselor. "You're still an accountant," says teenage daughter. I am still an accountant and I'm still as passionate about it as the day I started. Because accountants have an impact on people's lives. The advice we give changes people's businesses which in turn changes their lives. I'm excited in my role of accountant. Accounting is not stodgy. Accounting is exciting. Accounting is cool! My ambition is to become the "cool dude of accounting". (do they still say "dude", do they still say "cool". Remember that song: When I say, "cool, man, cool, I don't mean cool, man, cool, I mean you leave me cold, Jack") We were throwing some ideas around with some of our clients as we do from time to time, looking for that unique benefit that our firm gives to our clients. That unique something that distinguishes us from other accounting practices. One said, "You have helped me to improve my business. Not only am I making more profits and have more to spend, but I also have more time to spend away from the business. The more time I spend at home with my family the happier my life is. And the happier I am the happier my wife and children seem to be. When my wife is happy all sorts of good things happen ? even our sex life improves. That's it! You can advertise that using Kelvyn Peters CPA and Associates improves your sex life" I don't think so! Sorry, we haven't accepted his idea. You're completely on your own in that department, but we can help you improve your business and consequently your life. And your goal might not be extra profit but extra time for living! We know we can because we are doing it for others. We repeat ourselves so often because the truth is the truth and there is only a limited number of ways to tell it. You've heard this before. If you are spending every waking moment in a hassle about your business, there must be a better way. There is! Accountants have been ripping off their clients for years In 1973 I attended a workshop for accountants at the Finance Management Research Center then headed by Dr Keith Cleland. The workshop was intended to drag participants into the 20th century. "Accountants have been ripping off their clients for years", he told us. The 25 participants were shocked. These represented vibrant accounting firms from all around Australia, both large firms and small. They were at the cutting edge of the industry. Otherwise they would not have been at this kind of workshop. To a person they resented that comment and one fellow wanted to punch him on the nose. (It wasn't me, but I would have held his coat). By the week's end we discovered how we were charging high fees for things that our clients couldn't understand, couldn't use and didn't need. At the same time we were neglecting the information that they did need to increase their profits and safeguard their businesses. 20 Years Later what's Changed? I attended a week long seminar hosted by CPA Australia in 1993 which was to train us in "client based accounting". Dr Cleland presented the initial module. He did not openly criticize accountants this time, after all, it was the CPA's hosting it, but he gave almost the same speech (same jokes, too) as he had 20 years before. "These things aren't taught in Universities", he said, "so the accounting profession has mostly ignored them. They have let small business down but things are changing". Know-it-all, Kelvyn Peters had to jump to his feet and say that the doctor had said exactly the same thing 20 years ago. Where were the signs of change? Universities were still not teaching accountants how to help their clients. "This seminar with CPA Australia and the suggestion they might make client based accounting a speciality is a good sign", he replied. 10 Years Later? Nothing has changed. Our hopes have withered on the vine and small business must look elsewhere for help. Recently I was called in to assist an ailing restaurant. We were happy to work with their existing accountant. We'd rather do the fun stuff and let the accountant do the boring tax returns and compliance work. In this case the client insisted we take over the whole of the accounting function. The accountant was most unhappy. "They are difficult clients", he said, "I have kept the fee lower than it should be and I have done extra to help them". Indeed, he had! The financial statements were beautiful to behold with colored graphs and key ratios compared against industry average. (most accountants still don't do that. I had advised that both wages costs and cost of foodstuffs were too high. Our focus was to form tactics to reduce them. "But I had already told them that", said the Accountant, "what do they need you for?' I told him that the client knew the kitchen wages were too high and what he wanted was for someone to show them how to reduce the wages in the kitchen. "I can't do that", he said, "I'm an accountant". I would have to camp down there in the restaurant to see what's going on. And they wouldn't pay the fee". Yes they would. They were going to pay me. Most accountants see their role as being the provider of financial statements, cash-flow projections and tax returns, and there's the rub. Each of these is a tool not an end in itself. It's like giving the client a hammer and saw and telling him to go build a house. He needs more than the tools, he needs to be shown how to use them. Of course the client will complain about fees whatever the level if all he receives are not useful to him. Accountants generally are flat out preparing financial statements and tax returns. Meeting dead-lines. They haven't the time to 'smell the roses'. Anything that doesn't help meet a dead-line has to wait until later. Often its too late. I may still look like an accountant, even the cool dude of accounting, but there is nothing I like more than talking with a business owner about his business. There's nothing a business owner likes more than discussing his business and planning to make more money. It's great fun and he loves to pay me for it.
Secrets Revealed To Having The Most Professional Staff On The Telephone!
Do you have all the customers your business can use?
Your Business and the Story of a Tree; Part One
This morning, I went to take a short walk outside. I've been feeling a little more flexible since this weekend, and I figured a stroll would help me keep that liquid feeling in my bones that I've missed so much.
Top 7 Small Business Resources for 2005
If you want to start a business in 2005, and start making money almost immediately, the sites listed below are some of the best I have found. I've chosen each site because it is absolutely outstanding in providing the tools you need to get started, as well as taking you through the steps you need to get started immediately.
Loose Lips Sink Ships - The Fastest Way to Put Yourself Out of Business
I agree that knowledge should be free, but the next person I see revealing their hard attained business practices in a public forum, I am going to feel the need to approach them, make them choose their own switch from an outside tree, then whip them with it.
Analyzing Customers in Your Business Plan
The Customer Analysis section of the business plan assesses the customer segments that the company serves. In it, the company must 1) identify its target customers, 2) convey the needs of these customers, and 3) show how its products and services satisfy these needs.
Explode Your Consulting Income
Here are just a few ways to increase and diversify your income from your consulting business.
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