From the Cutting Room Floor, More Fast & Serious
We interviewed 40 C-level execs to put together our Fast & Serious package, which you can read in full in our January issue, but we gleaned a lot more that we weren’t able to include. So, here are three more thoughts on growing a franchise brand, sustainably.
Chuck Runyon, Anytime Fitness, details “three things” when asked to explain his brand’s growth drivers. “We have been and continue to ride the tailwind of consumer spending and wellness. It is nearly a $4 trillion industry and growing, and that is going to continue for the next decade,” he said.
Second, “our business model in comparison to other franchise opportunities, is still far simpler to operate and the cost is still on the lower end.”
Third, “our real estate. We can be pretty elastic, which gives us leverage with landlords.”
Steven Buckley, BurgerFi, stresses the importance of bringing people into a franchise brand “not behind the growth but ahead of the growth. That’s a critical factor, because it takes a year for people to really get comfortable with their positions, build the relationships, and then they become top performers. If you need someone today, it’s not going to happen.”
Chris GrandPre, Mosquito Squad and several other outdoor living brands, advises a thoughtful approach. “We are very thoughtful, deliberate—some would say methodical—in the pace we choose to grow. We have a support team for each franchise, and I know the capabilities of our team, and what I don’t want to do is outstrip their ability to provide” top-notch service.
“Mosquito Squad is probably our simplest” brand to start, he added. “We know we can bring on 25 to 30 franchisees a year, and we’ve been doing that consistently, for five years. Whereas with Archadeck,” another brand he oversees, “we’re talking about five to nine a year, because it is a much more complex business.
“I think you have to be thoughtful about the complexity of the business model, or simplicity of the business model, capabilities of your team, and then instead of just selling everything you can sell, set your franchise development number to the number you can support.
“If we’ve ever gotten it wrong, we have erred on the side of not over-taxing our support teams. We’ve never erred on the side of, ‘Oh my gosh, we sold 50, we can’t handle it and we have to hire up.’ If anything, we’ve been guilty of being too cautious, because we don’t want to out-strip.”