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The Importance of Comprehensive Training in Franchises

In an industry based on systems, equipping owners and their teams with the skills they need to execute is crucial.

The franchising industry is built on proven processes and guidelines, but even the most ironclad systems are useless without local owners and teams who are equipped to execute them. Ultimately, the success of a franchise system hinges on the strength of the brand’s training model. While the specific skills needed to succeed will vary by industry, there are a few things a comprehensive franchise training program should cover:

  • Practical skills associated with day-to-day operations
  • Leadership and people development skills
  • Business planning
  • Brand representation

It is crucial for a franchisor to develop appropriate training and support structures, but it is just as crucial for local owners to take advantage of them. 

“There are many opportunities for [a franchisor] to give [franchisees] access to resources,” Fit Body Boot Camp CEO Bryce Henson said in an interview with 1851 Franchise. “The framework, resources and success extend from headquarters, and it’s really up to the franchise partners. The ones who access and take advantage are the ones who are successful — the opposite is also true.”

Practical Skills Ensure Franchise Owners Can Properly Support Their Own Teams and Step in When Necessary

As a business owner, franchisees are often charged with overseeing the ongoing operations of a business. However, it’s important that their understanding of each aspect of the business is more than hypothetical. 

Henson explained that Fit Body Boot Camp has an in-person training period dedicated to exactly this. For owners to successfully run their locations, they need to understand the ins and outs of daily business operations.

“They’re learning how to lead, they’re learning the business system and they’re learning how to coach,” he said. “New franchise partners get to experience the coaching protocol, then we do a debrief discussing what they learned, what worked and what they would recommend for future training.”

This allows the franchisee to have more complete knowledge of exactly what each aspect of the business requires, and it prepares them to step in when necessary. Whether an employee calls in sick or there’s an unexpected emergency, franchisees who truly understand the intricacies of the work are more prepared to provide support and find an effective solution. And by listening to the feedback of those attending the training, the corporate team can continue to adapt and address any knowledge gaps identified by the very people who will be expected to execute at the unit level.

Leadership Is Not Management; Franchisees Need to Do Both

Many franchisees are prepared to manage the business and their people when they choose to become an entrepreneur. But, if they’ve never held a true leadership role, they will often need help understanding exactly what this means. 

Proper leadership and the ability to support employees’ personal and professional development can have an incredible impact on the long-term success of a franchise, starting with individuals’ engagement with their work and loyalty to the business.

Long-Term Considerations Help Franchisees Start Strong

A proper training program will equip franchisees with other skills and knowledge that they’ll need as they grow their business. Strong brand image and a scalable business are both things that start small and are made exponentially better with consistent care. 

Incorporating these topics into initial training allows franchisees to establish a foundation. This way, even if they are not intently focused on these efforts as they work on the day-to-day demands of opening a new business, they are prepared to jump right in when things calm down.

With robust training at the start of an entrepreneurial journey, franchisors and franchisees can ensure standardization throughout the system, along with operational excellence, quality service, customer satisfaction and loyalty, and legal and ethical compliance. Combining these factors with dynamic ongoing support will encourage the long-term success of the concept.

“We have a very strong feedback culture,” Henson said. “Once a year, [in November], we send out a Net Promoter Score survey that’s a bit more in-depth. Between the State of the Business, the ongoing trainings, and then the [NPS] feedback, it gives us a lot of insight on what we’re doing well and what opportunities our franchise partners see where we’re able to bridge those gaps.”

Comprehensive training is the linchpin of success in the franchise industry. By investing in thorough and ongoing training programs, franchises can fortify their businesses, adapt to changing landscapes and position themselves for enduring success.

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