Inside Franchise Business - - Contents -

San Churro’s fran­chisee re­cruiter takes our Q & A.

Kim Davies heads up re­cruit­ment at

choco­la­te­ria chain San Churro.

1. What is your per­sonal strength in busi­ness?

I am def­i­nitely a peo­ple per­son, and I gen­uinely care about our fran­chise part­ners. This comes across in my re­la­tion­ships with them, and I take pride in know­ing they trust in my hon­esty.

2. What have you learned about fran­chis­ing?

Hon­esty is def­i­nitely the best pol­icy when re­cruit­ing fran­chisees – you can re­cruit the right peo­ple only if you de­liver the right mes­sage. If you don’t, you end up with the wrong fran­chisees.

Fol­low your gut: if some­thing feels wrong, then most likely it is.

D on’t j udge p eo­ple w ithout g et­ting t o know them. Not ev­ery­one pre­sents well on pa­per, and there are some amaz­ing peo­ple out there who just need a chance to prove them­selves.

3. What does it take to have an ef­fi­cient fran­chise model?

A strong brand, a sen­si­ble growth strat­egy, a clear un­der­stand­ing of the mar­ket, high-qual­ity prod­uct that is rel­e­vant to the mar­ket, sturdy poli­cies, con­sis­tently high stan­dards across the net­work and all backed up by a ded­i­cated sup­port net­work and a com­mit­ment to grow­ing prof­itable busi­nesses.

4. What do fran­chisees want from their fran­chisor sup­port team?

Ex­pe­ri­ence, un­der­stand­ing, will­ing­ness to lis­ten, and hon­esty.

5. How does a fran­chisor fos­ter trust in the re­la­tion­ship with a fran­chisee?

Again, hon­esty and con­sis­tency. Fran­chisees in­vest a huge amount in their fran­chisor, not just in mone­tary terms but also in their fu­ture. They need to feel con­fi­dent their fran­chisor has their best in­ter­est at heart, and that hap­pens only if the fran­chisor is hon­est, and has clear sys­tems and guide­lines, transparent pro­cesses and con­sis­tent treat­ment across all fran­chisees.

6. What can fran­chisees do to en­sure a good re­la­tion­ship with the fran­chisor team?

Com­mu­ni­cate, be con­struc­tive and be open to sug­ges­tions for im­prove­ment. Most fran­chisees will go through chal­leng­ing pe­ri­ods dur­ing their ten­ure, but that is when it is re­ally im­por­tant for them to con­tact their busi­ness devel­op­ment man­ager and dis­cuss their con­cerns. A fran­chisor can help and pro­vide sup­port only if they know what is hap­pen­ing with their fran­chisees.

Stay pas­sion­ate about the brand. If fran­chisees lose fo­cus and pas­sion, it is time for them to make a de­ci­sion about whether to move on. We re­spect the de­ci­sions of our fran­chisees and will help them with the sale of their busi­ness.

7. In your ex­pe­ri­ence, what is the most com­mon mis­take fran­chisees make?

Not do­ing their home­work (due dili­gence) and hav­ing un­re­al­is­tic ex­pec­ta­tions. Most peo­ple en­ter fran­chis­ing to “be their own boss”, but of­ten do not re­ally un­der­stand what this means. Be­ing your own boss means tak­ing re­spon­si­bil­ity for your busi­ness, in all ar­eas.

You need to wear a lot of hats and learn a lot of skills. You need to un­der­stand that it is a long-term com­mit­ment and that you will be de­vot­ing a lot of your time to the busi­ness, par­tic­u­larly in the early days.

8. What do you look for when in­ter­view­ing a prospec­tive fran­chisee?

Hon­esty and open­ness. At San Churro, we make our fran­chisee meet­ings very in­for­mal as this en­cour­ages ap­pli­cants to ask as many ques­tions as they can and to be hon­est about their con­cerns. This al­lows us to con­nect with the can­di­date and un­der­stand if they are right for San Churro, and if San Churro is right for them.

If the en­vi­ron­ment is too for­mal, peo­ple can be­have in a way not nat­u­ral to them. We want to get to know the in­di­vid­u­als, and we want them to get to know us. If at the end of the meet­ing they walk away hav­ing de­cided San Churro is not right for them, that’s OK. We want to part­ner with peo­ple who are to­tally on board with our brand and our cul­ture.

9. What do you think is the most im­por­tant qual­ity a fran­chisee needs?

Two qual­i­ties spring to mind: the abil­ity to de­velop, man­age and men­tor a team of staff mem­bers who will echo the brand val­ues, and a gen­uine com­mit­ment to the best pos­si­ble cus­tomer ser­vice.

10. What does it take for a fran­chisee to be a star per­former?

Pas­sion for the brand, drive to suc­ceed, great cus­tomer ser­vice, great staff man­age­ment skills, the abil­ity to work within the guide­lines of the brand, the abil­ity to re­spond pos­i­tively to chal­lenges and a will­ing­ness to em­brace change.

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