Despite what many people might tell you, franchising is not a guarantee of success. It’s an opportunity for success for some, and a truckload of rope with which others can hang themselves. Franchising is most certainly not something people should be doing out of boredom or frustration. Quite the opposite.
If you want to start a business, franchised or not, you should feel on top of your game, invincible, and never better. You should have lots of money saved, be brimming with confidence, have unflagging family support, and lots of relevant experience. You should be running toward what you see as a fantastic opportunity with so much momentum that not all the obstacles in the world can stop you.
Take the “Running Away vs. Running Toward” Quiz
How do you know if you are running toward a vision of success or running away from problems you don’t want to face? Here are some true or false questions to ask yourself:
- I have been thinking seriously about starting my own business for a year or more.
- I have savings that will last my family and me at least five years if the worst-case scenario occurs.
- I feel highly confident in myself and believe I can succeed at anything I set my mind to.
- I am willing and able to work harder than at any other time in my life.
- I feel rested, healthy, and have had a medical checkup in the past six months. I have no disease or condition that I know of that may slow me down.
- My spouse/partner is one hundred percent supportive of my buying a franchise and is ready to help in any way I need.
- There is not a single job in the world I can see myself doing now. I have to start a business.
- I am a self-starter and do not need anyone to tell me what to do next or how to prioritize my workload.
If you can answer “true” to every single one (not just some) of the statements above, you may be ready to buy a franchise. If you must answer “false” to one or more, stop and think. This may not be the right opportunity for you at this time. There is no hurry, despite the deadlines imposed on you by your franchise broker, your prospective franchisor, or yourself.
This quiz is a good self-barometer of where you stand in the soul-searching you may need to do about entrepreneurship.
Give It a Year
One way to know you are running toward a vision of business ownership is when the drive to do so has been on your mind for at least a year. You’re thinking, “A year? Is he nuts? So much can happen in a year. I might be on to something else by then.” Exactly!
We all go through ups and downs throughout a year’s time. We go through seasonal cycles, mood swings, issues with our jobs that may last a month or two or longer. We have issues with our spouses and partners, most of which come and go.
If an idea or plan sits with you through four seasons and is still front and center, you have a basis to move forward. Time to reflect is an instrumental part of making sure you’re taking only healthy risks.
Mitchell York is a Professional Certified Coach, small business entrepreneur, and author of Franchise: Freedom or Fantasy? How to Know If a Franchise Is Right for You After Your Corporate Career. He can be reached at email@example.com and information about his book is available at www.franchisefreedomorfantasy.com. Mitch also blogs at www.e2ecoaching.com.