Entrepreneurs are inherently drawn to franchising. Diversity of brands, the backing of known names in the marketplace like Wendy’s, Subway, and ACE, and support systems provided by the Franchisors. However, if you want to grow from a nice job of owning 1 or 2 units to building a business and owning 100+ it takes strategies outside the support system of the franchisor.
Building an infrastructure for growth is up to multi-unit franchisees. Developing the strategies to successfully add units and expand your portfolio of brands is up to you as the owner and leader of your enterprise. People who are bought into your culture, vision and who have the behaviors, attitudes, skills, and knowledge to perpetuate your culture are the number one essential ingredients for success.
Aicha Bascaro, Founder & CEO of the American Franchise Academy, says it’s essential to develop a leadership development system to grow; the one thing that can hold you back is the lack of leadership ready to take over the new units. As a multi-unit franchisee expert, Aicha shares the following steps to ensure you have the leaders to grow
1. Identify untapped internal potential – Too many times, franchisees and business owners ignore the people inside their business when looking for leaders.
2. Create a leadership development program – Create a development curriculum based upon the Knowledge, Skills, and Attitudes essential for growing into leadership roles within your organization. You can develop programs internally and incorporate programs and resources from places such as Franchising.com, the Multi-Unit Franchising Conference, the American Franchise Academy, or the International Franchise Association.
3. Track the people in the program – As your people are going through the program, follow up closely on the progress. This way, you can see first-hand the leaders thriving and outperforming the group.
4. Promote the ready ones –Recognize milestones and acknowledge those who have fulfilled and exceeded expectations. Promote those who can take it to the next level and increase your odds of success.
Many don’t consider “succession planning” part of the growth discussion; however, those multi-unit franchisee owners who have engaged in succession planning are already implementing their growth strategies. They have identified and developed the resources, infrastructure, vision, and process to get them to where they want to go. Whether you are looking to grow now or in the future, leadership development is critical.
Leadership bench strength is essential for successfully scaling your business from today to where you want to be tomorrow. By focusing on leadership development, you are in a power position for growth, whether through consecutive successful openings or acquisitions. Also, the more you do, the easier and better they will become.
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Many people put off succession planning because they think it means retirement, exit, and the end. However; succession planning is just the beginning. It gives the owner options in terms of what “their next” looks like, whether that be growth, philanthropy, or a new business venture. Our process focuses are addressing 10 key areas of what we call the Succession Matrix.