Education and aspiration
FCA chairman George Yammouni explains what 2009 holds for the franchise industryÕs association.
One of the Franchise Council of AustraliaÕs (FCA) main goals in 2009 will be providing educational services and resources for people thinking of buying a franchise — that is pre-entry education for potential franchisees.
Educating people about franchising is probably one of the single most important influences on the sustained success of the sector. The best way for the FCA to become more proactive about education is to concentrate on ensuring that our programs reach as far as possible into every corner of the marketplace to find people that are interested in franchising. With ACCC and government involvement, we can harness their intellect and reach, and touch everyone out there who aspires to follow the great Australian dream of owning your own home and being in business for yourself.
The cornerstone of the FCAÕs plan will be pre-entry seminars held around Australia at and after the Franchising Expos. We have the support of the ACCC, Small Business Departments and Government and we have a comprehensive and focussed program in place to ensure that anybody looking to get into franchising does so with eyes wide open.
These seminars will provide attendees with expert speakers from Government, ACCC, franchisors and franchisees who will be on hand to speak to guests about their experiences and offer advice. These events are unique, in that they are targeted towards the people who have read the literature, have a few franchise systems in mind, and are just about to make that final decision.
The seminars will provide a targeted resource for would-be franchisee operators, arming them with the best possible education before they enter a franchise system. Look out for further information on these events coming soon on the FCA website.
Currently there are a number of destinations for potential franchise buyers to learn about franchising before they decide if franchising is for them.
The FCA website — www.franchise.org.au — is a great starting point to launch your research and provides information on the franchising business model, franchising in Australia, links to relevant regulatory bodies and advice on research, costs and fees.
The FCA also has a Franchise Manual, ideal for those seeking to improve their knowledge and make an informed decision. The ACCC website — www.accc.gov.au — also has information for potential franchise buyers.
The ACCC regulates the Franchising Code of Conduct for the Australian franchise sector and provides comprehensive information about the rules applying to all areas of franchising.
The Franchising and Business Opportunities Expos, held throughout Australia, are not only a place to learn about the many and varied franchise systems on the market, but also learn about the important aspects of buying the right franchise for you. There is a Boot Camp held at each Expo where current franchisees, franchisors and advisors speak about their experiences and offer advice for potential franchise buyers.
These examples are just some of the resources and services available.
The next focus for the FCA is an obvious progression from educating pre-entry franchisees and that is focusing on educating franchisees once they have purchased a franchise. Regular FCA national events and the FCA Franchise Academy are the ideal places for everyone in the franchise community to achieve these goals and fast-track their professional development.
The FCA has also recently given the green light to Griffith University to conduct a pilot survey into franchisee success and failure — what are the facts affecting and influencing franchisee performance? This study will go a long way to highlighting any areas we need to work on to compliment our variety of existing offerings.
To find out more, visit the FCAÕs newly re-modelled website at www.franchise.org.au
George Yammouni is the founder and CEO of the nationwide franchise group Bathroom Werx. He is the current chairman of the FCA and has served on the FCA Board since 2003.