Every week, I speak with up to 20 Primrose Franchise Owners from across the U.S. In my role as the Executive Director of New School Support, I lead a team of professionals who support Franchise Owners who are learning how to run a Primrose school and answer any questions they may have about the childcare industry, franchising or Primrose Schools.
With every new Franchise Owner, I find myself searching for the same three qualities: salesmanship, sportsmanship and leadership. These qualities aren’t listed on their resume or written in their personal statements. Instead, they come through in one-on-one conversations or meetings. Over time, I’ve realized that these qualities often determine whether Franchise Owners will be successful or not. In fact, I believe these skills are vital for any individual considering owning a franchise business in early education and care.
To give you a better idea of what I mean by salesmanship, sportsmanship and leadership, consider the importance of the following.
Sales are the biggest measure of success for most franchises. For example, in the food industry, franchisees must meet product quotas by selling their services and products to the community. Personal services franchisees, like Primrose schools, must meet occupancy goals. Either way, owners need to dedicate time into marketing their franchise and making it competitive in their business sector. When franchisees are new to the industry, generating sales means taking time to learn more about their market and the industry, so franchisees should be engaged in their learning and asking important questions to understand their new business, their customers and their industry.
Historically, Primrose Franchise Owners who spend dedicated time marketing their business prior to opening and have the ability to “sell” themselves, their school and the Primrose brand before they open have more success than those who wait for a fully constructed school to begin enrolling students. Laying the groundwork early to build awareness and momentum is a best practice for the top performers within any franchise system.
A franchisee needs to be both a competitor and a team player. As entrepreneurs, they should be driven to compete in their market, drawing from a passion that fuels them to open a new business. But, franchisees should also remember that they bought into a franchise for a reason – the stability of working with a time-tested brand and formula. Those who buy a franchise become part of a team, and must work together to build on the foundation and reputation of the collective enterprise. While franchisees need to be open to trying new things, they also need to be able to follow-through with proven processes, maintain brand consistency, meet system goals and set additional goals for themselves and their teams, which will lead them to success.
It takes a skillful combination of competitive edge and team-player skills to be a successful franchisee. When I speak with Franchise Owners, I find that the ones who ask good questions, respect brand compliance, follow our guidelines and put the necessary time and dedication into their work are the most successful in the Primrose Schools system.
Leadership may be a skill that’s important for any job, but leadership in a franchise working environment is different. Franchisees are the CEOs of their locations, the coach of their teams and the head cheerleaders, too. Eight of the Top 10 Traits of a Good Franchisee, according to Franchise Direct, take root in common leadership skills, like good judgment, reliability, willingness to work hard, sound financial awareness, delegation skills and excellent communication and networking skills.
Owning a franchise is about more than being a boss though. Franchisees need to inspire others, be approachable and be compassionate, good listeners. They are the heart of their business and should lead by example. The best franchisees in any system jump in when needed and have the ability to do every job in their unit, from mopping the floors to soothing a frustrated parent. It comes down to creating a customer-centric environment and recognizing when that environment needs immediate attention or correction.
As the heart of their schools, Primrose Franchise Owners are known by everyone. From the staff and teachers to the parents and children, exceptional Franchise Owners are working in their business. Model Franchise Owners inspire and lead the teams they depend on to deliver on our promise every day. Once Franchise Owners instill a culture of excellence in their schools and with their teams, they can begin to step away and trust their school leadership team to lead by the example set, even when they are not present.
When supporting new Primrose schools, I can often tell in the first phone call or two who will excel and who will have a harder time adjusting to life as a Franchise Owner. If you’re interested in learning more about how to choose a franchise that’s right for you, read more here. You can use the “request information” link at the top of this page to set up a time to learn more about Primrose as a franchising option.