It’s been your dream for months (if not years), and now you’re determined to make it a reality.
You’re going to open your own restaurant.
Congratulations. That’s fantastic news. So what style of restaurant will it be? What will you have on the menu? How’s your marketing plan coming along? Where will the restaurant be located?
You may not know the answers to all those questions. You may not have even considered some of them. But you can still fulfil your dream of having your very own restaurant.
Introducing the franchise model
By buying a franchise restaurant, you’ll be bringing your raw enthusiasm to a successful business model. And that immediately gives you a number of advantages:
- A lot of the work is done for you. Didn’t have answers to some of those questions we asked earlier? Don’t worry. With a franchise, a lot of them will already be answered—restaurant style, branding, marketing, recipes, menus, even systems and processes. And you know they work because they’ve already been tried and tested in the other restaurants in the franchise network.
- Less paperwork to deal with. In many cases the franchisor will negotiate and hold the lease for you. Of course you’ll still have to pay the rent, but that’s pretty simple compared with sorting out lease arrangements.
- Staff training is often provided. You can’t run a restaurant on your own, which means you need to not only hire staff but also train them. Fortunately, a lot of franchises include face-to-face training for staff and procedure manuals for them to follow.
- An inbuilt support network. If you have any questions or concerns you’ll not only have the wisdom and experience of the franchisor to draw on, but also the support of the other franchise owners.
Of course, some of the advantages of owning a franchise can also be disadvantages. You may not be creating the restaurant (or even the food) you’ve always envisioned. The franchisor’s conditions and expectations may seem unrealistic. And the costs of being part of the franchise may put it out of your reach.
But while owning a franchise may not be a dream come true for everyone, it’s certainly worth considering. The franchisor wants to make a return on their investment, and so they’ll do their best to help you make a return on yours. And there are a lot of successful franchisees out there.
That’s one of the great strengths of the franchising model: The inherently win-win situation where the franchisor succeeds by helping their franchisees succeed.
Best of all, buying a franchise restaurant means you don’t start ‘from a blank page’. You hit the ground running and get a feel for the business, learning what it takes to run your own restaurant. And who knows? You might one day decide to open your own restaurant: One where you get to choose the style, the menus, and everything else. Maybe your own original restaurant concept will become so successful that you’ll franchise the business and have many dozens of franchisees in your own franchise network.
The world’s your oyster as a restaurant entrepreneur. And starting out as a franchisee could be your ideal first course.