The franchise model

In the The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It Michael Gerber speaks of the franchise as a model for all small businesses. This does not mean that every small business owner should aspire to franchise his business. It does mean that the franchise can serve as a model to operate a more efficient and profitable small business.

The franchise model is based on systems–on performing tasks in a specific and consistent manner. When tasks are performed in a consistent manner, the results are also consistent.

Gerber uses McDonald’s as an example. No matter where in the world you go, your Big Mac will be the same. Consistent actions create consistent results. The same principle can be applied to any business, whether you are baking pies, or building widgets, or mowing yards.

Having systems and procedures in place becomes particularly important once you begin to hire employees. Systems provide a means for insuring consistent performance without micro-managing employees. So long as they follow the system, the results are the same no matter who performs the task.

Everyone benefits from systems. Employees have clear instructions on how to perform their job. The owner can focus on those aspects of the business that truly require his attention. And customers know what to expect.

While systems do not guarantee success, they certainly increase the odds. And anything that can help a small business owner overcome the challenges of entrepreneurism is worth considering.

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