Make Your Franchise a Family Business

One of the biggest mistakes candidates considering franchise investment make is leaving their significant others out of the loop. A franchise consultant colleague once told me that when it comes to including a spouse in investment research, “You can either do this with your partner or to your partner.” No matter which franchise opportunity you choose, it will inevitably be a family business.

I learned this lesson myself—the hard way. When my wife and I decided I’d leave the corporate world and invest in a business, I literally locked myself in a room for nearly a month. At the end of that time, I emerged, amped up with excitement, and announced, “I found the business!” As I poured out my enthusiasm and certainty that this was the right investment, my wife just looked at me and said, “I don’t get it.”  In case you aren’t familiar with how this translates in spouse-speak, it means, “We’re not doing it.”

Consult Your Loved Ones

At that moment, I realized my mistake:  I was doing this huge change to her, not with her. Lesson learned; the next business I started to investigate, I included her in every step of the process, and it made all the difference.  We shared a view of the business and the choice to invest in it.

The moral of my story—and those of other investors who’ve made the same mistake—is simple:   Your family will probably have many of the same fears that you initially had about franchise investment.  If they haven’t been through the whole journey with you—if you’ve been working on the logistics in your own head for weeks or months or years—you need to take the time to help them catch up.  Acknowledge those fears, then build your family’s confidence by sharing your business plan and laying out your realistic expectations for year one, year two, and even year ten.  Their daily lives will be impacted by the changes you’re making, and they deserve to be involved in the decision-making process.

As you share the reasons the change you’re making is important to you, why you want and need it, and how it will change your lives together, you’ll allow your family to share and embrace both your vision and your plan to see it realized.

Want to learn more?
Let’s talk about it.
E-mail me at or call 855-904-7900.

Pete Gilfillan
Franchise Consultant and Author of HIRE YOURSELF

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