Franchising involves an established business owner, known as the franchisor, permitting the franchisee to distribute commodities under the franchisor’s label. Franchising is a prospering industry in the country: According to Statista, American franchises generate $670 billion yearly, and there are over 750,000 franchises nationwide. Franchises additionally see higher success rates than small businesses, as there is a business plan to follow and established name recognition.
There are distinct qualities that predict success in this dynamic environment.
“First of all, franchising is a big commitment. You certainly learn self-discipline, and that’s important. You have to be a people person, and give dedication and time to the business,” says Jim Duffy, vice president and CFO of Crisgar Corporation, a fast food franchise encompassing five restaurants that he runs with his wife. A Navy veteran, Duffy is a mentor with American Corporate Partners, a nationwide nonprofit organization that offers free, year-long mentorships to post-9/11 veterans and active duty military spouses.
While Duffy says the most rewarding aspect of this career is the satisfaction of building a business and seeing the results of hard work, it’s crucial to note that veterans have an edge over their civilian counterparts in this field.
“Veterans are exposed to things that most people don’t get exposed to, and they deal with people from different situations. That comes in handy with franchises,” Duffy says.
ACP mentor Laura Rau is a career ownership coach with her company, The Entrepreneur’s Source, and provides insight into the business building process to her clients. She understands the resiliency of veterans.
“Veterans forge ahead and are comfortable with being uncomfortable. They’re twice as likely to succeed in the franchise world due to their discipline, diligence and integrity,” she says.
Rau was instrumental in helping members of the military community achieve their ambitions, as her clients have opened carpet-cleaning, window-cleaning, and vacation rental franchises.
“Nothing makes me happier than when I talk to owners and they say that their phones can’t stop ringing,” she says.
Veterans possess the integral traits needed for having note-worthy accomplishments in the franchising industry, but taking the additional step of speaking with exceptional mentors like Rau and Duffy will accelerate their professional development even more. Mentors will hold veterans accountable once they outline their goals, offer invaluable support on a veterans’ franchising journey, and can open their franchising network to their veterans.
ACP has helped over 25,000 veterans since its inception in 2008. Interested veterans can apply at acp-usa.org/mentoring-program/veteran-application, and an operations associate will reach out within 24 hours.