Welcome to another episode of Atlanta Franchise Today with host Leslie Kuban, expert franchise consultant and owner of FranNet Atlanta. As you are evaluating and comparing different franchise opportunities, there are some common and normal challenges you will likely encounter. The good news is these challenges are mostly in your own mind. And if you are open to learning and opening up your mind to some different perspectives, you will have a much better opportunity to find the right franchise for you that will give you the lifestyle you want.
Today’s episode is the first in a series of three about these common mental challenges that you’ll likely face and need to overcome in your franchise opportunity search. Today I’m going to hit the passion problem. And I hear this a lot from people I’m working with when I’m helping them in their franchise opportunity search. They’ll say, “Leslie, I really need to be passionate about the franchise I choose if I’m going to be successful.” And when I’m hearing people really emphasize this passion piece, it’s oftentimes a reaction to their lack of engagement or lack of passion in their current situation, their current job or business or career track that they’re in. And it’s very natural for all of us to want to have meaning and energy by what we’re putting most of our waking hours into.
Now, the problem with this word passion is people are too often attaching it to their hobbies and their personal interests. “Why not do what I love and make money? Why is that a problem?” Well, let me give you an example. A client that I’ve been working with lately loves mountain biking. He’s really good at it. His friends ask him to take them out and teach them how to mountain bike like he does. So naturally he’s asking, “Is there a franchise for that?” But in the same breath, he’s expressing his desire to have his weekends free to spend with his family. Now, when do you think most people, customers of a mountain biking business, are wanting to go out and ride? It’s going to be on the weekends.
So oftentimes when people are attaching the passion for their business that they want to get into, to their hobbies, it’s competing with other important goals they have for owning their own business, like the lifestyle they want to have, flexibility controlling your schedule. And I just learned over the long run, having the lifestyle you want usually lasts longer than the personal love affair with the product or service of your business.
Now, another way to look at this is if your hobby is your business, it’s no longer your hobby, it’s your income. You have a certain return on investment expectation from it, and that’s a very different relationship. What used to be a source of relaxation, what you do to recharge, now has this financial outcome attached to it. So my advice is keep your hobby, your hobby, and find another business you enjoy and that meets your needs so you can have this well-rounded balance that you’re going to want for your lifestyle.
I think a better word of what we’re talking about here is proud, and you absolutely want to be proud of the franchise that you own. You want to feel proud that you’re giving value to your customers. You want to be proud and excited to talk about your business with your friends and your family and your community. But being proud is not the same thing as having a personal love affair with the product or service of your franchise. And if we look at it this way, it really does open the door to a larger universe of opportunities that you can consider.
And the reality is, some of the best franchises to own are boring. They’re practical services, they’re always needed, they’re simple and if the business model is simple, that means it’s easier to scale. If you want to have a better lifestyle in the future, you definitely want a business model where it’s fairly simple to scale it. And I want to give you a wonderful example.
Just a couple weeks ago, on the show here, my guest was Jon Mittleman and he talked about his 15 year journey owning a window cleaning franchise. And we joked that when he started his franchise search, he wasn’t out looking for a window cleaning business. He didn’t say, “Today’s my lucky day if I find myself in a window cleaning franchise.” But he kept his mind open and he defined passion in terms of the outcomes and lifestyle he wanted his future franchise to give him. Things such as, the business hours are Monday through Friday, so that he is not working on the weekends. A scalable business, because ultimately he wanted to go back from working full-time in the business and be more of a part-time, semi-absentee owner.
And today he works a few hours in the morning on his business doing some sales calls, some paperwork, communicating with his team, and then he enjoys the rest of the day for other things that are important in his life. He is very passionate about using his talents. He came from a sales career in his corporate life, and now he gets to use that skill for the benefit of his own business. So he’s definitely proud of his business as well. He is very proud of helping his customers succeed in their business by maintaining a clean and professional image to their customers.
So my tip for you today is be proud of the service your business provides to your customers and be passionate about the lifestyle your business gives you and your family.
In the next episode in this series, I’m going to talk about the problem of perfection in your franchise opportunity search. I really hope you found this episode to be enlightening today and helpful. I appreciate you tuning in. I’m Leslie Kuban and I look forward to seeing you next time on Atlanta Franchise Today.
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