November 11, 2019
Though there is some disagreement in the franchise world whether a franchisee is a “real” entrepreneur, the evidence is strong to support that, yes, a franchisee is a true entrepreneur.
Those arguing against this position would say that the franchisee did not invent the concept and franchise system of the brand and are only buying the opportunity to profit from it. This argument relies on the mistaken notion that every entrepreneur summoned a completely new idea out of thin air.
In reality, being a franchisee requires all the key traits of the entrepreneurial spirit.
Even a Packaged Concept Requires a Desire and Ability to Grow
A franchisee takes a (calculated) risk financially, in many cases getting loans to pay for franchisee fees and the initial investment required. Even with a concept that already exists, every day, the franchisee is responsible for growing the business. As one Forbes writer (and franchisor herself) writes: “You don’t have to have invented the wheel to be an entrepreneur – wheelmakers can be entrepreneurs too!”
Even though certain franchise brands such as UNITS Moving and Portable Storage present a turnkey total package to get franchise owners rolling with success, the franchisee still absolutely needs to possess certain qualities, including intellectual curiosity (passion for learning), a strong work ethic, and great instincts for leadership.
Though a rule-follower who follows a system probably can maintain a franchise business at some level, without an entrepreneurial mindset, such a franchisee will never scale the business up and grow very much.
Franchisees Must Go for It
To be certain, an entrepreneurial spirit is essential even for an owner within a franchise system. Franchisees are entrepreneurs who still must take matters into their own hands on a daily basis. It’s why smart franchisors will look for driven entrepreneurs who will do more than just rely on the brand—who will instead harness the brand’s power and systems as a springboard to growth.
“Companies that nurture an entrepreneurial spirit within their organization encourage their employees to not only see problems, solutions and opportunities, but to come up with ideas to do something about them,” says Sara Sutton Fell, CEO and founder of FlexJobs. “Entrepreneurial spirit helps companies grow and evolve rather than become stagnant and stale,” she says.
Key Attributes of an Entrepreneur
Markers of the entrepreneurial spirit include:
Passion: Simply crunching numbers will keep a franchisee treading water, but to really make waves, an owner must be passionate and motivated.
Self-confidence: Contrary to what many think, the best entrepreneurs are actually fairly risk-averse, taking calculated risks such as launching a location of a proven franchise concept. But they still take risks, and they have to have strong confidence in themselves to do so.
Communication skills: The franchise owner is at the hub of a wheel whose spokes include employees, franchisor executives, community leaders, customers, banks and investors, realtors, and others. The franchisee must communicate effectively with all stakeholders to get the wheel moving. Relationship-building is critical.
Decisiveness: Though a franchise brand such as UNITS Moving and Portable Storage provides guides, instruction, and systems for capitalizing on leads and managing the business, on any given day, the franchisee is on his own—in the moment. Being able to make fast decisions is a useful ability.
Eye for talent: Operators of UNITS franchises don’t require many employees, but if they need to hire, say, a manager, the owner must have a keen eye for the right skill set and attitude. This is perhaps even more important when there are only one or two people on the team, as all responsibility falls on a coupe or few individuals.
Integrity: This trait needs no explanation; a leader must do the right thing, always.
Perseverance: This is perhaps the most important attribute of the entrepreneurial spirit. As mentioned, a turnkey concept such as UNITS Moving and Portable Storage will get the franchisee set up and started for success, as well as provide support along the way, but every business has good days, bad days, and ups and downs. A good franchisee has the character to keep on trucking.
Adaptability: No matter how good a brand or its franchisees are at the business, without a curiosity for better ways of doing things, growth will be limited—especially when factors outside their control change. Entrepreneurs must be nimble and humble enough to be willing to make changes.
Future orientation: Success today doesn’t necessarily mean success tomorrow, and it certainly doesn’t necessarily indicate bigger success tomorrow. Complacency is a curse. The best franchisees are entrepreneurs who have their eyes on the future.
Founded by Michael McAlhany in 2004, the mission of UNITS Moving and Portable Storage is to provide personal customer service while supplying the most innovative equipment in order to eliminate frustrations associated with moving and storage space issues.
UNITS Moving and Portable Storage currently has 24 franchised and three corporate territories across the United States. With a presence in more than 40 markets, and growing, the brand is looking to expand with the right people in the right markets.
For more information on how to take advantage of this opportunity, or simply to learn more about the moving and portable storage industry, visit https://www.unitsfranchisegroup.com/ and fill out the inquiry form. We will reach out to you to talk more about your interest in our brand, and how UNITS Moving and Portable Storage can help you reach your personal and financial goals.