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Ready or Not?

Examine your strengths and weaknesses before jumping into a franchise.

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Remember that Michael Jackson song, "The Man in the Mirror"? OK, so it was about changing the world, but the concept also applies to buying a franchise. When you're considering becoming a franchisee, a bit of self-examination goes a long way toward your long-term success. Realizing this, franchise consulting firm The Entrepreneur's Source (TES) has prospective franchisees fill out profiles and evaluations to determine what their goals are and whether they're really ready to be an entrepreneur.

Below is the actual evaluation TES gives to its clients. Relax: There are no right answers to the following questions. Instead, you should use these questions to take a realistic look in the mirror and determine whether entrepreneurship in general and franchising in particular is right for you.

1. What have I accomplished?

2. What am I looking to achieve in the next three to five years?

3. What are my priorities?

4. Why am I looking for a change?

5. What are my business strengths?

6. In which business areas do I need support or training?

7. If I change nothing about my standard of living, how much money does it take to run my household?

8. If I change nothing about my job, where will I be in the next three to five years?

9. What types of franchises are within my budget?

10. What criteria should I use to evaluate my franchise options?

Source: The Entrepreneur's Source