Franchise Operations

As a Franchise Owner, Should You Manage Your Business?

Entrepreneurs tend to try to do it all, from serving customers to ordering inventory and managing employees. But as a franchisee, is that in your best interest? Or are you better off hiring a manager to assist with some of the day-to-day activities?

The answer? It depends on what kind of franchise owner you want to be.

The Two Primary Types of Franchise Owners

While every business owner is as unique as a snowflake, most fall into one of two camps:

  1. Those that want to work at the franchise every day and be involved in all aspects
  2. Those who distance themselves and allow the business to function without their involvement

Does one appeal more to you than the other? That’s a good indicator that it’s a good fit for you. Now let’s assess each option to help you with your decision.

The Hands-On Owner

Whether it’s out of desire to be involved in every component of running your franchise, or a financial need (you can’t afford to hire a manager), working in your business every day can help you stay tapped into what’s going on. Employees will be on their best behavior if they know the boss is likely to pop in unannounced. You can pay attention to trends in traffic and sales and make strategic decisions based on them.

The drawback here is if your franchise isn’t making much money and you’re relying on it as your sole source of income, the way husband/wife teams do. Without the guaranteed income of one person working as an employee elsewhere, it can put a financial strain on any couple if they’re both working in the business.

The Laissez-Faire Owner

Other owners prefer to stay out of the way, letting a manager run the daily operations of the franchise. If you look at your franchise as a money-making opportunity and aren’t interested in being involved, this would be the better option for you. Many laissez-faire owners have several franchises or other business endeavors that they operate simultaneously, since none require their full-time attention.

The downside to this strategy is that you’ll be far removed from what’s happening in your business, and may only find out of issues once they become too large for your manager to deal with them alone. It’s more challenging to make strategic decisions if you don’t aren’t tapped into the pulse of your business the way the hands-on owner is.

It is possible to find a balance between these two. You can hire a manager to run the business and then check in regularly so that you stay abreast of the goings-on. This can help you spot problems before they become too large.


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