Entrepreneurship and the Role of the Franchise System

Entrepreneurship and the Role of the Franchise System

An estimated 2.6 million people are self employed in Canada; that is 7.5% of the total population! Suffice it to say that this number is drastically under-inflated, given the scale of the underground economy in Canada, estimated to be worth nearly $40 billion.  That, no doubt, comprises a number of ill advised entrepreneurs earning their living “under the table”. That said, even if we only consider the legitimate market being driven by courageous leaders, it is an enormous part of the Canadian economy.

So, we’ve established that there are many independent operators. What would have encouraged all of these individuals to leave the cushioned arm chair of working for someone else and take the courageous decision to become an entrepreneur? Well, there are myriad reasons, and for each person, the reasons vary. According to Molly Cain who contributed an article to Forbes, the top two reasons for people to venture out on the tight rope of self-employment are:

1. Schedule flexibility

2. More control over ideas and projects

You can read more about Molly’s top 13 reasons here:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/glassheel/2012/04/12/13-signs-you-are-meant-to-be-self-employed/2/

These two reasons are typically the motivational factors of working for yourself. Have you ever wanted to be at your child’s track and field meet, parent teacher interview, or go golfing on a Monday afternoon but you couldn’t because of that tight deadline or lengthy work day?

Working for yourself means creating your own hours. Combine that with having greater control over your income, and this “working for yourself thing” really starts to sound good. Many start to feel resentful for contributing to and building someone else’s wealth. Entrepreneurs have the ability to put in as much as they want in order to get the results they want, this could be in terms of income.

Your grit, determination and gumption become 100% invested in your vision, and therefore, success or failure is determined by your actions, and yours alone.

Segue into the role of the franchise system. Evidently, there is no way to completely avoid risk, stress and anxiety in starting your own business, but perhaps one of the most impactful strategies to reduce these factors is to invest in becoming a franchise owner. Be assured that you are not the only one who would consider doing such a thing.  In fact, in Canada, there are some staggering statistics around this form of enterprise:

  • Canada has the 2nd largest franchise industry in the world, led only by the U.S.A.
  • One franchise operation exists for every 450 Canadians
  • Franchises represent over $100 billion in annual sales
  • Approximately $1 of every $5 are spent on goods and services at a franchise
  • A Canadian franchise opens every 2 hours
  • There are a total of 76,000 franchises operating under more than 900 different brand names
  • Of all franchises opened in Canada over the last 5 years, 86% are under the same ownership and 97% are still in business
  • Franchising is the preferred Canadian small business expansion model
  • Franchises are active in over 30 business, retail and service sectors

Why?  Because a franchise system reduces so many of the not so fun elements of starting a business. Risk is reduced, because you are investing in a proven model where someone else has spent countless hours researching and developing it. The cash investment is reduced because aside from franchise based fees and startup expenses, the cost of developing a brand from scratch has already been incurred. Brand awareness is typically already existing, so marketing costs can be lower than if you were starting something from scratch. But over and above all of that, engaging in a franchise system makes you part of an elaborate network of knowledge, experience, and crowd sharing. Instead of learning from your mistakes and improving processes based on them, you learn from the mistakes and successes of many other like-minded entrepreneurs, who all happen to function under one brand.  This, perhaps, is the golden nugget of the entire theory. In a franchise system, you are never alone to manage challenges, and you have an invaluable resource upon which to draw ideas and inspiration.

OK, right, so is this trend of growth in franchising going to continue? You bet it is. It is estimated that over the next several years, franchise-based businesses will make up more than 50% of the total retail economy in Canada. If there was any forecast that would encourage you to take the leap and jump on the franchise train, this is it. Or perhaps you will be in a Monday to Friday, 9 to 5 slump, still working for someone else, and wondering why you didn’t do something sooner…

Driverseat is a chauffeur and shuttle service specializing in designated driving, airport drop-off, elderly accompaniment and special event transportation. Find out how you can start your Driverseat franchise at www.driverseatinc.com/own/.

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