Yesterday I interviewed a woman who owns a retail franchise and asked her, as I often do, to tell me what had surprised her in the first year of her business. She couldn’t think of anything, and for a very good reason. She had thought through so many contingencies and scenarios before opening the doors that nothing surprised her. She worried in advance about everything!
Even though the franchisor provides a generous amount of help to franchisees in launching their businesses, she wasn’t satisfied to simply follow their methods. Now, that’s her style, but it’s also worth emulating, for any type of business owner, franchisee or not.
She had been regional merchandising manager for a large company, so she had a certain amount of business savvy to start out with. But she also spent a lot of time with counselors at SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives), and she had a pretty darn good checklist of items to consider and meticulously investigated all of them.
It isn’t going to cost you much except a little time to be thorough when you plan your business, and you’re very likely to make up that time in reaching profitability more quickly. If planning isn’t your strength, think about getting advice from a group such as SCORE.