For the unemployed, or for those whose retirement funds have taken a serious hit as a result of the recent economic downturn, entrepreneurship may present enticing possibilities, according to the franchise experts at FranNet. But, concerns about financing and supporting a new small business stop many would-be entrepreneurs from pursuing the option.
While nearly one person in ten is still out of work, the good news is that recent indicators signal a growth in lending to small businesses. A recent article in the Wall Street Journal stated that J.P. Morgan Chase increased loans to businesses with annual sales of less than $20 million by 37 percent in the first nine months of 2010. Citigroup’s year-to-date loans to business of the same size already match loans made in all of 2009. While the overall lending picture for small businesses is mixed, the growing availability of credit is a hopeful sign. Combined with the passage of The Small Business Jobs Act in September, this encouraging economic news may be a forecast of an improving environment for entrepreneurship in 2011.
“The recent news is encouraging, and anyone who has considered owning their own business may want to reconsider that option now,” states Jania Bailey, President and COO at FranNet. “People who are ready to explore franchise ownership need to do more than obtain financing. They need to begin the search by evaluating their skills. Successful entrepreneurs understand what they are good at and where their skills are most valuable.”
Bailey suggests the following approach:
- Start by creating your own personal model of who you are, what you’re good at, and what you want your business life and personal lifestyle to be if you enter into and ultimately succeed in your own franchised business.
- Be honest! Don’t feel you need to have every skill in the universe. Additionally don’t let your model include items that you just don’t want any part of.
- Be candid and uncompromising about who you are and what you want. For example, if you don’t want a business that will require you to have a lot of employees, or if you want your weekends reserved for family, not business, put each item into your model.
- Don’t buy a business because a friend or colleague did. They’re not you. Buy a business because it fits you, not someone else.
- Don’t settle for a business that isn’t right for you. Of the literally thousands of choices that franchising affords you, chances are high that there’s at least one (and probably a whole lot more) that would be very successful when matched with the skills and abilities that you possess.
FranNet provides free advice and guidance to individuals interested in exploring the option of self-employment as a franchise owner. “For people who are taking the plunge into entrepreneurship for the first time, purchasing a franchise smoothes the transition into business ownership,” says Bailey. “New entrepreneurs benefit from having an established business model, with tried and proven marketing, sales, supply and management guidelines already in place. Supported by this robust foundation, new business owners are able to focus from day one on growing their businesses.”
FranNet offers direction, information, resources and support to help prospective entrepreneurs identify the business model that best meets their individual needs. “There are more than 3,000 franchise concepts available today,” says Bailey. “But, there are ways to focus on the franchise opportunities that might be right for you, based on your honest assessment of your own skills. Our FranNet consultants are experienced business professionals who can help clients make a decision about franchise ownership that is based on the clients’ talents, skills, hard facts and industry expertise.”
For more information about FranNet visit www.frannet.com.