ARTICLE LIbRARY

Information for franchisors, franchisees, social franchisors and professionals contributed by members of MSA Worldwide, the International Franchise Association, and other noted industry experts.​ Visit franchise.org/news for an extensive library of additional articles.

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What is Franchising: An overview

What is Franchising: An overview

There are nearly 800,000 franchise establishments in more than 120 industries employing over 9 million people in the United States. Franchising is the dominant creator of small independently-owned businesses in the United States, and has been for decades.

What is a Franchise? Franchising and how it works

What is a Franchise? Franchising and how it works

Franchising is a system for expanding a business and distributing goods and services, and is based on a relationship between the brand owner and the local operator to skillfully and successfully expand.

Are You Ready to Be a Franchisee?

Are You Ready to Be a Franchisee?

As a franchisee, you are agreeing to follow someone else’s operating system, including specific requirements for marketing, suppliers, and the products or services you offer.

Pros and Cons of Becoming a Franchisee

Pros and Cons of Becoming a Franchisee

Only you can determine whether becoming a franchisee is right for you and your family. It’s a personal decision – take the time to do your due diligence before making a life-changing investment.

What is The Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD)?

What is The Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD)?

The Franchise Rule requires that franchisors provide the presale disclosure document (the “FDD”) to prospective franchisees necessary for them to make an informed decision prior to entering into a franchise relationship.

What is a Franchise Agreement?

What is a Franchise Agreement?

Every franchise is governed by the terms of a contract between the licensor - the franchisor - and a licensee - the franchisee. This contract is called the Franchise Agreement.

Understanding the Franchise Agreement vs. the Franchise Disclosure Document

Understanding the Franchise Agreement vs. the Franchise Disclosure Document

The Franchise Agreement is signed by both parties upon completion of the deal to do business together. In contrast, the FDD is presented prior to the final agreement. Both must be understood.

Franchise Fees - The Basics

Franchise Fees - The Basics

As a franchisee, you will be subject to a variety of one-time and ongoing fees.

Franchise Royalty Payments - The Basics

Franchise Royalty Payments - The Basics

In most franchise systems, the “financial relationship” element is usually met in two ways: a one-time upfront payment (known as the “Initial Franchise Fee”), and an ongoing payment (known as the “Royalty Payment”).

Start-Up Costs: Determining Your Initial Franchise Investment

Start-Up Costs: Determining Your Initial Franchise Investment

Smart franchisees investigate the costs in their area and modify the franchisor's projections based upon the reality of their markets.

What is the difference between a franchise and a biz-op?  When does a biz-op cross the line and become a franchise?

What is the difference between a franchise and a biz-op? When does a biz-op cross the line and become a franchise?

The major differences between a business opportunity and a franchise are generally found in the degree of the relationship.

Determining if a Home-Based Franchise is Right for You

Determining if a Home-Based Franchise is Right for You

How can you tell what is a genuine home-based franchise opportunity, and what is not? Like any business opportunity – franchise or otherwise – it is imperative that you do your due diligence before you invest.

Three Hard Truths to Know Before Becoming A Franchisee

Three Hard Truths to Know Before Becoming A Franchisee

The article addresses three important but too-often overlooked realities that anyone interested in becoming a franchisee needs to know BEFORE engaging in the process.

Which Franchise is Right for You?

Which Franchise is Right for You?

The key to choosing the right opportunity for the next phase of your life is to ask yourself some very important questions; how you answer each of these questions will guide you towards specific types of franchises.

Franchise Relationship Structures

Franchise Relationship Structures

The various types of franchise relationship structures and how they function, from single-unit and multi-unit franchising, to master franchising and area representatives, as well as other franchise options.

The Differences Between Single-Unit and Multi-Unit Franchise Ownership

The Differences Between Single-Unit and Multi-Unit Franchise Ownership

Even with the recent increase in multi-unit franchisees, the single-unit franchise remains the standard for many brands.

What Is a Franchise Area Developer?

What Is a Franchise Area Developer?

In addition to the Franchise Agreement that each franchisee signs, a multi-unit developer enters into a multi-unit development agreement with the franchisor.

MSA Worldwide: Where We Are Today

MSA Worldwide: Where We Are Today

As the acknowledged leader in franchise consulting, MSA's commitment to our clients is to develop programs that enable them to exceed their goals and improve their franchisees' performance.

The International Franchise Association (IFA)

The International Franchise Association (IFA)

The International Franchise Association works through its government relations and public policy, media relations and educational programs to protect, enhance and promote franchising.

VetFran: Helping Veterans become Job Providers

VetFran: Helping Veterans become Job Providers

VetFran offers financial incentives, training, and mentoring to veterans interested in franchise ownership and/or a career path in franchising.

Top Ten Reasons to Invest in a Franchise

Top Ten Reasons to Invest in a Franchise

Expert Michael Seid's top ten reasons for becoming a franchisee, with pros and cons, are essential reading for anyone considering investing in a franchise opportunity.

5 Consumer Tips for Getting the Most from a Franchise Trade Show

5 Consumer Tips for Getting the Most from a Franchise Trade Show

Franchise trade shows provide the opportunity to investigate many franchises at various investment levels. To avoid becoming overwhelmed, use these five tips to get the most from your visit.

What do franchise brokers do?

What do franchise brokers do?

Franchise brokers are paid their commission only when you buy a franchise from one of their clients.

Getting the Most from a Visit to a Franchisor - Non-Scripted Due Diligence

Getting the Most from a Visit to a Franchisor - Non-Scripted Due Diligence

While there's a lot that can be learned from the more formal portions of a franchise Discovery Day, prospects can gain additional input to help with their decision-making by peeking behind the curtain.

7 Warning Signs When Buying a Franchise

7 Warning Signs When Buying a Franchise

"Red flags" or indications that further investigation may be prudent before you commit to a franchise investment.

The Process of Buying a Franchise

The Process of Buying a Franchise

Your decision to purchase a franchise should be based upon two broad understandings. First, you should have an understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of franchising. Second, you should have an understanding of the franchise you want, and how to evaluate it.

How can I find out the financial performance of franchises?

How can I find out the financial performance of franchises?

Developing a financial projection for your future business is an important part of your evaluation of the franchisor. Even if the franchisor chooses not to provide the information you are looking for, with a little work, you can find most of it yourself.

How to Understand a Franchisor's Financial Performance Representation

How to Understand a Franchisor's Financial Performance Representation

Investing in any franchise is an important decision, and putting together enough accurate information takes effort and time. Use multiple sources to help you make your decision.

Shopping for a Franchise? What to Look for in Franchise Training

Shopping for a Franchise? What to Look for in Franchise Training

Training is critical for the success of your franchise. This article covers the essentials to look for when researching which franchise to invest in.

Negotiating a Franchise Agreement

Negotiating a Franchise Agreement

It's recommended to limit your demands to things that provide you with real benefit but do not impact the ability of the franchisor to obtain consistency.

Evaluating a Franchisor’s Services - Will franchise support turn out to be part of the sales pitch or real help?

Evaluating a Franchisor’s Services - Will franchise support turn out to be part of the sales pitch or real help?

By doing your homework, you can access not only the quantity, but also the quality of support you’ll receive from the franchisor. Ask any questions you have before you sign the franchise agreement.

Are the terms of a franchise agreement negotiable at all?

Are the terms of a franchise agreement negotiable at all?

Having a standard offering better allows the franchisor to maintain consistency in the franchise system, a very important element of why franchising is so successful.

Thinking Long-Term when Selecting a Franchise

Thinking Long-Term when Selecting a Franchise

Many franchisees enter a system intending to exit within a set period of years, and evaluate franchise systems accordingly before making their investment.

Buying a Franchise from an Existing Franchisee

Buying a Franchise from an Existing Franchisee

Buying an existing franchise can be a great opportunity, but remember that you still have to do your homework before you make a commitment.

Buying a Franchise in a New Franchise System

Buying a Franchise in a New Franchise System

Just because a brand doesn’t have a long, established history doesn’t mean it can’t or won’t develop into a strong and successful brand.

Five Areas to Evaluate Before Going into a Franchise

Five Areas to Evaluate Before Going into a Franchise

For many people franchising has provided a direct path to achieving the American Dream. But before you jump on the franchising bandwagon, take a careful look at these five areas.

Developing Your Franchise System Field Staff

Developing Your Franchise System Field Staff

Field staff perform multiple functions in a franchise system; not only monitoring franchisee compliance, but also contributing to system growth far beyond completing a site visit checklist.

Franchise Failure Rate

Franchise Failure Rate

What Is a Franchise Operations Manual?

What Is a Franchise Operations Manual?

A franchise operations manual is the DNA of a franchise system - the foundation that governs franchise unit performance, procedures and conduct.

Documenting Your Business for Franchising

Documenting Your Business for Franchising

When franchising your business, one of the essential tasks is to document your operation for the purpose of guiding franchisees about how to meet your standards and execute the brand with integrity.

Essential Tips for Maintaining Franchise System Manuals

Essential Tips for Maintaining Franchise System Manuals

To secure franchisee compliance as your franchise brand evolves, operations manuals updates must keep pace with changes to your franchise system.

Four Best Practices in Franchise Manual Wording

Four Best Practices in Franchise Manual Wording

If a methodical and conscientious approach to the language of franchise manuals was not a priority in your system before, the current climate around joint employment issues should serve as a wake-up call to review your materials now with these best practices in mind.

The Role of DIY Videos in Franchise Training

The Role of DIY Videos in Franchise Training

For most skills, providing a visual demonstration of the task is the gold standard in training. Can anyone create training videos by simply grabbing their Smartphone and shouting “roll ‘em”?

The circus comes to town

The circus comes to town

How to Find a Franchise Lawyer

How to Find a Franchise Lawyer

Any Lawyer Will Do… Right?

Any Lawyer Will Do… Right?

Acquisition Fever

Acquisition Fever

Crisis Management

Crisis Management

Disagreeing with Your Franchisor

Disagreeing with Your Franchisor

Discovery Days

Discovery Days

Franchising – The engine for growth

Franchising – The engine for growth

Franchise Development – Doing It Right

Franchise Development – Doing It Right

Developing a Proper Franchise Program

Developing a Proper Franchise Program

Why Franchising is Right for Enovana Green Cleaning

Why Franchising is Right for Enovana Green Cleaning

Bring all-natural cleaning to your neighborhood with an Enovana Green Cleaning franchise, using green cleaning products to deliver a more environmentally-friendly and healthier house cleaning experience.

Making a Splash in the Franchise World - Goldfish Swim School

Making a Splash in the Franchise World - Goldfish Swim School

Goldfish Swim School's year-round swim lesson model for children 4 months to 12 years teaches swim and safety skills while building character, with one certified instructor for every four children.

Franchisor Profile: Shelly Sun, BrightStar Care

Franchisor Profile: Shelly Sun, BrightStar Care

Shelly Sun, CFE, is the CEO and Co-Founder of BrightStar Franchising, LLC, a healthcare franchise system providing the full continuum of home care, child care, and medical staffing services. Shelly also serves as Chair of the International Franchise Association's Executive Committee.

Melt Mobile Franchise: Taking Cheesy Comfort Food to the Next Level

Melt Mobile Franchise: Taking Cheesy Comfort Food to the Next Level

Melt Mobile has adapted an American classic comfort food - grilled cheese - to how people are eating today; creative, comforting sandwiches infused with originality, sustainability, and quality ingredients at its core.

Franchise Investor Profile: Aziz Hashim, Founder, NRD Capital

Franchise Investor Profile: Aziz Hashim, Founder, NRD Capital

Aziz Hashim is the founder of NRD Capital, the first private equity fund sponsored and managed by a multi-unit franchisee. He is also the immediate Past Chair of the Executive Committee of the International Franchise Association (IFA).

Blink Fitness Zigs, While Others Zag

Blink Fitness Zigs, While Others Zag

Blink launched its first clubs with a lofty vision – to create a gym whose culture and environment is accepting of all adults, not just for those who are fit enough for a gym.

Franchisor Profile: Ronald Olson, NTY (New To You) Franchise Company

Franchisor Profile: Ronald Olson, NTY (New To You) Franchise Company

Ronald Olson is the Founder and President of NTY Franchise Company, the gold standard in resale franchising companies. NTY franchises five brands, each with its own focus: Clothes Mentor, Children’s Orchard, Device Pitstop, New Uses, and NTY Clothing Exchange.

London Day School's Empowering New Vision for Preschool Franchising

London Day School's Empowering New Vision for Preschool Franchising

The London Day School's innovative curriculum introduces preschoolers to the greater world around them with foreign languages, mathematics, and social values such as tolerance and self-control.

Franchisor Profile: Liam Brown, Marriott International, Inc.

Franchisor Profile: Liam Brown, Marriott International, Inc.

Liam Brown is Chief Operating Officer, The Americas, Select Services, Marriott International, Inc., and first Vice Chair of the International Franchise Association's Executive Committee.

Franchisor Profile: Gordon Logan, Sport Clips

Franchisor Profile: Gordon Logan, Sport Clips

Gordon Logan is Founder and CEO of Sport Clips Haircuts, and serves as a member of the International Franchise Association’s Board of Directors.

House of Air Takes Flight: Franchising Can Be the Answer for International Expansion

House of Air Takes Flight: Franchising Can Be the Answer for International Expansion

House of Air, an indoor trampoline park, is expanding internationally with the franchise model.

Franchisor Profile: Jania Bailey, FranNet

Franchisor Profile: Jania Bailey, FranNet

Jania Bailey, CFE is the CEO of FranNet, LLC, the industry’s most respected consultant/broker group guiding individuals to the franchise opportunities that are right for them.

Franchisor Profile: Darrell Johnson, FRANdata

Franchisor Profile: Darrell Johnson, FRANdata

Darrell Johnson, CFE, is CEO of FRANdata, the franchise industry's source for objective information and analysis.

Kids In Sports Franchising Poised for Success

Kids In Sports Franchising Poised for Success

Kids In Sports franchises teach kids aged 12 months to 12 years the fundamentals of a variety of sports, also emphasizing sportsmanship, teamwork, respect, and communication.

Franchisor Profile: Melanie Bergeron, Two Men and a Truck

Franchisor Profile: Melanie Bergeron, Two Men and a Truck

Melanie Bergeron is past Chair of the International Franchise Association Board of Directors and Chair of TWO MEN AND A TRUCK, the fastest-growing moving company in the U.S.

Franchisor Profile: Thomas Bunchman, JumpBunch

Franchisor Profile: Thomas Bunchman, JumpBunch

JumpBunch brings sports and fitness classes to existing daycare, preschool and school-age classrooms. Since classes are held at the schools, this is a low-overhead, home-based business.

Franchisor Profile: Kathleen Gilmartin, Interim HealthCare Inc.

Franchisor Profile: Kathleen Gilmartin, Interim HealthCare Inc.

Kathleen Gilmartin is President and CEO of Interim HealthCare Inc., based in Sunrise, Florida. Kathleen also serves as President and CEO of Caring Brands International, a global healthcare franchisor enterprise.

Franchisor Profile: Jerry Crawford, Jani-King

Franchisor Profile: Jerry Crawford, Jani-King

Jerry Crawford, CFE, is President & CEO of Jani-King International, Inc., “The King of Clean,” and holds various officer and director positions of subsidiary and affiliated companies. Jerry also serves as a member of the IFA Board of Directors.

Franchisor Profile: Robert McDevitt, Golden Corral

Franchisor Profile: Robert McDevitt, Golden Corral

Robert McDevitt, CFE, is Senior Vice-President, Domestic and International Franchise Development for Golden Corral®, and serves as a member of the International Franchise Association’s Board of Directors.

Franchisor Profile: Jim Bugg Sr., Decorating Den Interiors

Franchisor Profile: Jim Bugg Sr., Decorating Den Interiors

Jim Bugg Sr. is Chairman of Decorating Den Interiors, the largest in-home decorating service in North America. He is also past Chairman of the International Franchise Association, and a member of the IFA Hall of Fame.

Sam Meineke, Founder of Meineke Discount Mufflers franchise system

Sam Meineke, Founder of Meineke Discount Mufflers franchise system

Samuel Washington “Sam” Meineke is an American businessman and entrepreneur best known for founding the automotive repair franchise Meineke Discount Mufflers. The company’s name was changed in 2004 to Meineke Car Care.

Franchising and the Internet - Part 1

Franchising and the Internet - Part 1

Franchising and the Internet - Part 2

Franchising and the Internet - Part 2

Adding a New Product or Service

Adding a New Product or Service

What Support Can You Expect from the Franchisor?

What Support Can You Expect from the Franchisor?

Franchisor support for franchisees varies, and is based on contract. This article covers what you should expect to receive in most franchise systems.

Evaluating Franchise Training Programs

Evaluating Franchise Training Programs

When prospective franchisees begin to separate one franchise opportunity from another, one of the items they need to examine closely is in the training the system will provide them.

Franchise Training Programs - the Basics

Franchise Training Programs - the Basics

Why franchisors provide training programs, who is trained and how, typical duration of training, and additional training after launch of a new franchise location.

Phases of Franchise Training

Phases of Franchise Training

The successful execution of the most brilliant franchise concept depends largely on one key initiative: training. Designing critical elements of training before you offer franchises is essential if your franchisees are to succeed.

Best Practices in New Franchisee Training

Best Practices in New Franchisee Training

Effective franchisee training is an essential component of a franchisee's first-year success. So what does effective training look like?

Whether and How to Train Franchisee Employees

Whether and How to Train Franchisee Employees

Whether franchisors should continue to provide training directly to franchisees' employees, and whether doing so creates any joint employer vicarious liability risk.

Certification in Franchise Systems

Certification in Franchise Systems

Because of the shifting definition of joint-employment in franchising, franchisors need advice on how to educate franchisees and their staff without risking vicarious liability.

Does the Training Method Matter in Franchising?

Does the Training Method Matter in Franchising?

Poor articulation of training goals and inefficient methods to achieve them can mean that training doesn’t achieve its intended objectives, and the whole franchise system suffers.

Insider Tips to Maximize Impact from Franchise Training

Insider Tips to Maximize Impact from Franchise Training

Insider tips from nineteen years of experience with defining and designing training programs.

Training Execution in Franchising: Problems and Solutions

Training Execution in Franchising: Problems and Solutions

Though problems in training execution can be the source of service or product issues, take the time to sort out whether other factors in your system are to blame.

The Role of Mentors in New Franchisee Training

The Role of Mentors in New Franchisee Training

As franchise systems grow, they have tremendous potential to breed mentors among successful franchisees who can help new franchisees be successful.

Getting Good Training - Techniques franchisors use to make sure you’re ready to operate your new business

Getting Good Training - Techniques franchisors use to make sure you’re ready to operate your new business

Training is the hallmark of great franchise systems. It’s ongoing, thorough and measured. Hopefully, as a franchisee, you selected well and found a system that dedicates its resources to training.

Use It or Lose It: Unit Manager Training Follow-Up

Use It or Lose It: Unit Manager Training Follow-Up

Recognizing the key role that on-site management plays in the success of the business, most franchise systems - once they have become mature - make the investment to train Unit Managers.

6 Tips for Auditing Manager Effectiveness

6 Tips for Auditing Manager Effectiveness

Not only do most franchisors support franchise units, many have a substantial number of company-owned locations requiring their own infrastructure. How can franchisors and franchisees monitor manager effectiveness?

Show and Tell - The Four-Step Training Method for Franchisee Personnel

Show and Tell - The Four-Step Training Method for Franchisee Personnel

Try these training techniques to make your training more effective and to reduce personnel turnover.

Understanding a Lease

Understanding a Lease

Finding A Great Location

Finding A Great Location

Encroachment – The issues and solutions

Encroachment – The issues and solutions

Encroachment – Managing Market Expansion

Encroachment – Managing Market Expansion

MSA Worldwide Ramps up its Response to Social Sector Needs with Social Franchising Initiative

MSA Worldwide Ramps up its Response to Social Sector Needs with Social Franchising Initiative

MSA’s focus on social franchising extends back more than twenty years, supporting NGOs, donors, government agencies, and social franchisors. Michael Seid established and chairs the IFA's Social Sector Task Force.

Fundamentals of Good Social Franchise Design

Fundamentals of Good Social Franchise Design

Implementers and funders of social franchising will dramatically improve their bottom lines when they understand the fundamentals of franchising discussed in this article.

Fifty Shades of Franchising: Differentiating commercial, micro, social, and hybrid franchise models

Fifty Shades of Franchising: Differentiating commercial, micro, social, and hybrid franchise models

This article intends to provoke discussion around ways in which the social and micro franchising communities of practice can organize and compare information and ideas so that the field of practice can advance more rapidly.

Franchising For-Benefits: Emergence of the 'Fourth Sector'

Franchising For-Benefits: Emergence of the 'Fourth Sector'

This new model of social franchising will dramatically accelerate the growth of the fourth sector by facilitating the replication of proven for-benefit businesses.

Think Different (and Big)

Think Different (and Big)

While there are an increasing number of social enterprises meeting social needs, most are operating at a scale far too small to make a meaningful dent in global problems.

When times get bad

When times get bad

The Changing Landscape

The Changing Landscape

Downturn in the Economy

Downturn in the Economy

Bridging Strategy and Execution

Bridging Strategy and Execution

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“I have known Michael for almost 20 years and he is as knowledgeable about franchising as anyone in the industry. His approach is pragmatic, creative and strategic. When I need guidance or advice in franchising, I go to Michael."

Peter Hoppenfeld, Principal
Peter Hoppenfeld, Attorney At Law
 

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Michael Seid (860) 523-4257 - mseid@msaworldwide.com

Kay Ainsley (770) 794-0746 - kainsley@msaworldwide.com