A recent article on Franchise Direct discusses workers’ growing desire for flexibility and posits that “a franchise might be the best flex-job ever.” The article goes on to discuss many of the reasons behind workers’ desire for flexibility and suggests that “franchising fits the bill” in many cases. But, as national franchise attorney Jeffrey M. Goldstein discusses below, there is a big difference between owning a franchise and collecting a paycheck while working from home.
The Flexibility of Franchise Ownership
To be clear, owning a franchise does offer flexibility in some respects—at least in some cases. With some franchise opportunities, owners can have fairly minimal involvement after the initial stages, and they can handle some (though not all) of their responsibilities remotely and before or after hours.
But, many franchisees—and first-time franchisees in particular—are owner-operators. This means that they are directly involved in running the business, and their level of effort is directly correlated to their franchise’s chances of success. Not only must they invest a significant amount of time in running and managing the business, but they must do so in-person between 9:00am and 5:00pm.
The Franchise Direct article highlights four aspects of flexibility:
- Part-Time Work – As a franchise owner, the less time you put in, the less you will get out of your business. While some franchises may offer the ability to work less than 40 hours per week, the vast majority of franchisees who work part-time will see their profits suffer. As an owner-operator, you are more likely to spend your days running the business and your evenings handling administrative tasks.
- Working Remotely – While some franchisees may be able to do some of their work remotely, they also need to be prepared to be on-site when necessary. Relatively few franchises offer the opportunity for full-time remote work.
- Flexible Scheduling – For franchisees, flexible scheduling generally means deciding whether they want to work through breakfast or after dinner. While franchises without retail locations don’t necessarily need to be “open” throughout the day, most customers (and many franchisors) will expect franchisees to operate during normal business hours.
- Self–Employment – Buying a franchise does offer true self-employment. As a franchisee, you are your own manager, and you are responsible for your own success.
As the article acknowledges, some franchises are more well-suited to prospective franchisees who have these desires than others. For example, a home-based franchise is most likely to check all of the flexibility boxes (although many of these franchises involve mobile components that require scheduling and normal hours). Seasonal franchises offer the ability to work part-time—although in a different way than most people desire. Ultimately, when considering a franchise opportunity, you need to critically assess your personal goals and capabilities, and you need to make an informed decision in light of the realities of franchise ownership.
Learn More from National Franchise Attorney Jeffrey M. Goldstein
If you are thinking about buying a franchise, it is important that you work with an experienced franchise attorney during the buying process. To discuss your franchise opportunity with national franchise attorney Jeffrey M. Goldstein in confidence, call 202-293-3947 or request a free initial consultation online today.