Want to be a franchisee? Are you buying yourself a job?

Own your own business by buying a franchise

Many people have the dream or desire to own their own business, and many achieve this by buying into a franchise system. There are many kinds of franchise systems to choose from across a range of industries and they can vary in terms of size, initial investment amount, ongoing support, ongoing cost or expenses, and their franchise network size. Some are local, or originate from Australia, while others come from overseas. If you think of some of the big brand names, you’ll probably know them or at least you’ll be familiar with what they do.

Unfortunately, all too often I see people who buy franchises who have little to no understanding of why they are buying a franchise, or what the implications or consequences of buying that franchise means for them. Sometimes it also means that they think they’re buying a business, but instead they’re just buying themselves a job.

Of course there’s nothing wrong with a job, or to be gainfully employed in any form or another, but if that’s not your original goal – then it wouldn’t be the best decision for you, or the best way to achieve what you really want in the first place. I appreciate that this issue is the same faced by any kind of small business and now I find myself quoting the ‘Entrepreneurial Myth’ or the ‘E-Myth’. There’s always a risk that if you’re in small business then you may find yourself working IN the business rather than ON the business, and for the purposes of this article, by working in the business then you’ve really just got yourself a job.

In fact, the unfortunate end result is that you may actually be worse off in ‘your own job’ than having some other form of paid employment. As your own employer, you’ll probably find that you’re not going to get the same kind of employment benefits that you’d get if you’d worked for someone else. Would your boss even pay you at all? All too often, being self-employed means paying yourself after everyone else. So who are you going to blame now? Of course I’m not trying to discourage any budding business person out there, but rather highlight the reality of the situation that many people in small business face all the time (and I’m no exception to the rule).

Rightly or wrongly, some franchisors will question their franchisees’ intentions for buying into their franchise – and some franchisors will even reject applications from franchisees if they determine that the intended franchisee is only ‘buying a job’ but has no or limited intentions of building a business. After all, most franchisors are focused on building their franchise business and brand and need to have franchisees who not only share that vision but are also actively building their franchise empire for them.

So the key questions for you are – why are you going into business and why are you buying a franchise business? Sometimes these questions aren’t asked, yet the answers are very important to determining whether buying a franchise is right for you.

Business Lawyer – Advice for Franchisees

Providing independent legal advice to intended franchisees

Starting any new business can be a daunting experience without the right help, regardless of whether you’re inexperienced or a seasoned entrepreneurs. If you’re looking at buying into a franchise, you’ll need to pay special attention to the franchise agreement and disclosure documents to understand your rights and obligations under that franchise. After all, that’s what’s going to be controlling your franchising life.

To help you along this journey and aside from all other requirements determined by law, you must obtain independent legal advice before you enter into the franchise agreement. We assist many clients who have taken up franchises in various industries, especially the fast food business – but we’ve also consulted just as many clients who have had issues with their franchises and franchisors, or who have wanted to exit the franchise because it’s not as easy as they had initially thought.

They key is about choosing your franchise carefully. Understand what the franchise is offering to you and how they’re going to support you. What’s the value of the franchise? That’s what you’re paying them for, isn’t it? In most cases, your accountant will also be a good source of advice in relation to your future plans of being a franchisee and the business goals that you’re setting for yourself.