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Maybe You Shouldn’t Buy a Franchise

In 1977, the senior execs at 20th Century Fox made an astonishingly bad decision. They signed over all merchandising rights for all Star Wars films to George Lucas in exchange for a $20,000 cut in Lucas’ studio paycheck. The combined revenue from Star Wars merchandising is estimated to have now exceeded three billion dollars, and continues to grow annually.

Though I don’t know the then senior execs at 20th Century Fox, I am fairly certain that they were/are smart, capable & extremely sophisticated business people. They likely analyzed data, conducted meetings & went through a due diligence process before coming to this awful business decision. I am also going to assume that looking back, they can likely pinpoint where their judgment went afoul.

As human beings, we sometimes make lousy decisions. Sometimes it is because we don’t have enough information to make a good one. Sometimes we don’t listen to the advice of others. And sometimes we ignore our gut, and do things we know we shouldn’t do.

If you are looking at different franchises and feeling uncomfortable about the whole process, I am here to tell you: It’s ok. Franchising just may not be right for you. That’s all.

You now have permission to go figure out what you really want, and go do it.

Too many of us get caught up into what we are supposed to be doing that we lose sight of what we are meant to do.

The best franchise owners are exceptional operators and managers. But to say this is all you need to be successful in franchising is short sighted, naive and wrong.

Location, market strength, service, and employees all play a large part in the success or failure of a business. Not to mention the fortitude of the owner.

So as you search for that great opportunity, please know that a franchise may in fact be your worst option.   And that’s ok.

As a way to help you figure this out, below are 4 signs you should not buy a franchise:

  1. You like to do things your own way;
  2. You keep questioning the underlying business model of whatever business you are considering;
  3. You have never managed employees or operated a business; and
  4. Something in your gut tells you it is a bad decision.

If one or all of these things have crossed your mind, you may not be a good fit for a franchise. It is better that you figure that out now and get on with your life in a positive and fruitful way.

No need to overanalyze. Often times the answers are right in front of our face or inside our souls. Where we get tripped up is in not listening or paying attention. We tend to want to talk ourselves into decisions even when we know they are not wise. Don’t do this with a franchise.