Australian Franchises

What a Great Franchisor Looks for in a Great Franchisee

Written on the 10 November 2010 by Glenn Walford

What a Great Franchisor Looks for in a Great Franchisee


I know that many budding franchise owners agonize and stress over their applications and interviews that form part of being approved to join the franchise system of their choice. And this stress is probably for good reason! We know that it is a very competitive market for franchisors to attract the right franchise owners. But at the same time, it is also extremely competitive to get good sites and good territories in good franchise systems. So to ease that stress, and to ensure you give yourself the best chance of being approved, Don Meij, CEO of Dominos Pizza Enterprises, and one of the top franchisors in the country, has some invaluable insight into what franchisors want. 


What Great Franchisors Are Looking For 

Meij revealed the following key ingredients successful franchisors are looking for include:

• A franchise owner who is willing to get their hands dirty
• One who is ‘in’ the business and not constantly absent leaving it for others to run
• One who constantly searches for and find opportunities to grow their business
• A realist
• To have significant equity in the business or “skin in the game”
• One who wants to be a part of a bigger team.

Importantly, he also reveals what he calls his ‘deal breakers’ for entrepreneurs aspiring to become franchise owners, and they are:
• A lack of honesty by the applicant during the recruitment process and to avoid the temptation to tell ‘little white lies’ when providing information to look more impressive
• A track record of negative past behaviour like unethical conduct or business failures, which according to Meij is a window into future behaviour
• A poor level of performance in franchisee training. In franchising, you can be approved ‘in principle’ but this is pending your performance through the franchisor training program in order to operate the business – fail that and you won’t be allowed to operate the business


When Are You being Assessed?

Your franchisor is assessing you throughout the entire interview process. So from your first contact right up until you successfully complete the training course, your suitability to join the system is being assessed.

Don also revealed some concerning consistent issues in applicants that commonly appear:

• The thought that you are going to run your business under management almost immediately – this is not realistic as you need to understand every aspect of it first and you can’t short-cut that
• Not having a passion for the business is not a good indicator for future success. When the going gets tough or tedious, your lack of passion for what you do daily will have a significant impact on your ability to drive your business forward
• While not expected to know all about the business up-front, your enthusiasm and passion for it should mean you are finding quite a lot out about it beyond what the customer see’s
• Those that show a lack of respect for the investment amount involved ring alarm bells regarding their level of financial acumen and a lack of understanding of what they are getting into.

Essentially, being up-front and honest is the key to the process. It is not a fashion show, nor is it a win at all costs competition. Be yourself with the information and detail you provide so you can allow yourself to be assessed on a true basis. At the same time it is not a one-way process, ensure you ask plenty of questions, as the answers to them may very well determine your overall suitability to the business. For more information, or to get a copy of ‘Buying Your Franchise’ that Don Meij and many other franchise experts appears in, go to

Author: Glenn Walford

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