Being your own boss is a dream shared by many, but achieved by only a few, largely because starting your own business takes time, effort, and the ability to secure a startup loan but carries no guarantee of success. In order to mitigate some of the risk associated with opening a business, some Canadians choose to use a model that has seen success many times before by purchasing a franchise instead of opening an independent business. Opening a franchise means that your products, procedures, and connections are already set up for you, but it does not guarantee success.
Before you buy into a franchise, you need to do your research. What are the niches in your town or city that can be filled by a franchise? Where is the best place to open the franchise? How much does it cost to buy the franchise and maintain the license? What other requirements will the head office want you to meet before you get your license? How long do you expect it to take before you can operate in the black? These are all questions you need answered before you can go to the bank with your business plan. To get them answered, you will need to talk to a representative from each of the companies you are considering buying a franchise for.
In Canada, there are some franchises that everyone knows and everyone seems to need: Petro Canada franchises provide gasoline, Tim Hortons provides coffee and donuts, and Property Guys helps people sell their homes without a realtor and Cannect can help with your mortgage for that property. But these franchises are already established in most Canadian locales. There are thousands of franchise opportunities out there that are not, ranging from accounting firms to landscaping companies, quick loan bureaus, senior care centers, and clothing stores. Because your franchise will become your life, it's just as important to match your franchise to your interests as it is to match it to your town's needs.
Once your franchise has been launched, take advantage of any and all perks and benefits offered by the corporation. For instance, conferences and training seminars run by the national or regional head offices are an opportunity for Canadian franchise owners to learn how to manage their new franchise and get tips for achieving success while contests and promotions can draw new customers in to your business. When you're part of a large network of businesses across the country, you will have more resources to draw on than someone who has opened an independent business.