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Should I Start My Own Business Or Buy A Franchise?

Choose What’s Best For You

Entering the business world of independence can be life-changing for you and your family.  It certainly was for me!  Launching three independent businesses as well as owning two franchises provided a 360 perspective about the pro’s and con’s or buying a franchise or creating a startup business from scratch.  Which road to go can be a difficult decision, especially when you carry the talent and fortitude to take either direction!  First, let’s consider what’s required for any of us to achieve business success, whether we “build our own wheel” or decide to buy a franchise opportunity.

If you haven’t owned your own full-time business there are some realities you must consider when facing the mirror of truth. Starting any full-time business whether it’s franchised or not requires more dedication, drive, energy and perseverance than you ever imagined.  Whatever sweat, toil and energy you believe you have to invest into your venture, double what you think it will be! "Throw away your time  clock during the first year, so you can start building your roadmap for success from the get-go". Year three is typically the “break out” year for savvy business owners, who have gained brand recognition in their marketplace and now have established a growing community of loyal customer fans.

What advantages does a franchise business offer that an independent business doesn’t?

You’re on your own, but not alone. You are part of a brand network of fellow franchisees that have access to policies, procedures, best practices, and support services provided with a proven business plan.  In essence, the brand has already made the mistakes for you, so you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Franchisors provide group purchase power which can mean better advertising buys, product purchases, site locations and rents. Brand awareness and cross promotions with neighbouring franchises can be quite attractive for all participants. These benefits certainly help offset the royalty and ad fees franchise owners pay.

What advantages does an independent business offer that a franchise doesn’t?

As a business entrepreneur, you can “build your own wheel,” and develop policies and procedures that you decide to put into place.  You’re in charge, you don’t need approvals for how and what you decide to advertise, or the way you want to run your business, what hours you must be open, and what products and services you decide to sell.  You answer to no one but yourself and any partners you may choose to bring into your business. If you want total control of ownership and freedom to make all of your decisions, you are a true entrepreneur who should develop your own business venture.  What’s the best road for you? It’s your call!

Steve Olson CFE is a 30 year franchise veteran and author of the #1 Amazon best seller, Grow to Greatness: How to Build a World-Class Franchise System Faster, available at www.olsonandassociates.com

Steve Olson CFE, CEO Franchise Advisor, Olson & Associates
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