Online cookbooks are one of my favorite ancillary benefits of today’s current technology. I’ve never been great in the kitchen, but once I found that I could find step-by-step instructions for making all kinds of food, I no longer had to worry about my own pitiful culinary sense, because someone had already done the hard work for me, and all I had to do was follow their lead. If everything in life were like that, this would be such an easier place to live, unfortunately, not everything in life is so easy. And though I’m sorry to say it, one of the most dauntingly non-recipe things in life is career: no one can tell you exactly what career is right for you and what steps you’ll have to go through to get there. And franchise opportunities aren’t any different; there are so many variables to every individual person that no one is capable of detailing the best experience for everyone beforehand. What I can offer, however, are some tips for helping you figure it out for yourself.
One of the most important things to take into consideration when piecing together your personal franchise plan is who you are. And because a full analysis of that will take us each a lifetime, let’s start broad. Aside from gender, one of the broadest personality classifications is the difference between introvert and extrovert, the first being people who are fueled by being with others, and the second being those of us who are energized by being alone. What you naturally are will help determine exactly what kind of business opportunity you should be looking for.
For example, knowing where you get your energy will help determine whether a home-based business or a franchise with a public storefront and a host of other employees will be a better environment for you. The difference, in this way, between a HomeVestors work-at-home operation and a Maui Wowi Hawaiian Coffees & Smoothies shop is huge. At the one, you will spend hours upon hours by yourself, in your home, making phone calls, studying housing market trends, shopping for real-estate, posting advertisements, and potentially not seeing another human being for days on end, which, for some of us, sounds like the ultimate vacation. At the other business, every day will be out of the house, dealing with a handful of employees in close proximity and line after line of guests looking for a tasty treat and personal service. If you’re like most people, one of these prospects will be very appealing and the other may sound like a nightmare.
Let’s try another angle: the difference between hands-on work with the public and the administration of people who do that frontline work. A franchisee with 1-800-905-GEEK has a completely different business role than an owner of a One Hour Parties small business, mainly because the 1-800-905-GEEK owner is primarily responsible for maintaining operations and receiving calls from clients, whom his employees then go out to help. In contrast, the One Hour Parties owner is actually the person at the client’s office, arranging the event and schmoozing with partygoers. Both are serving the public and corporate world, but their positions in doing so are utterly different, requiring two separate kinds of people for optimum success.
There’s one more way to look at this to help pick out whether you’re suited for a more introvert- or extrovert-ready business opportunity. Are you a bigger fan of people or projects? A Snap-On Tools franchisee is responsible for one thing: selling tools, which requires a high degree of interpersonal contact and an outgoing spirit, generally traits of an extrovert. Not that introverts are naturally mean or unlikable, quite the contrary, but after hours and days of sales, some get worn down. In contrast to this business model, whose success is built on personal interaction, the model of a franchise like Sure Step involves communication with the client, but the majority of the actual work revolves around physical labor. Some franchisees would much rather work on getting a task done than working directly with clients all day. What about you?
In the end, most of us are neither wholly introvert nor wholly extrovert, and the franchise business right you, whether work-from-home, project-based, or otherwise, is going to reflect a very specific combination of human relations and independence natural to your personality. Sit and spend some time thinking all these options through and then investigate in detail the franchises that sound best for you.