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Is Franchising Right For You? Ask Yourself These 9 Questions to Find Out. Before taking the leap into business ownership, consider these nine crucial factors.

By Mark Siebert Edited by Carl Stoffers

Key Takeaways

  • Different franchises require different skills, such as sales, management, or technical expertise.
  • While franchisors provide the business model and support, the franchisee's dedication and ability to follow the system are crucial for success.
  • Potential franchisees should evaluate their readiness by asking themselves critical questions.

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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The following excerpt is from franchise expert Mark Siebert's book The Franchisee Handbook. Buy it now.

We've all heard the stories: How 100 shares of McDonald's initial stock offering back in 1965 would be worth millions today. How no McDonald's franchisee has ever failed.

But the stories that really get our hearts pumping are the ones where a friend of a friend became a multimillionaire by buying the right franchise at the right time. And those stories sound all the more intriguing when we hear that the franchisee was just a regular person.

What is this magic system, and just how magic is it, anyway?

Related: Considering franchise ownership? Get started now to find your personalized list of franchises that match your lifestyle, interests and budget.

Busting the franchise myth

Franchising is one of the most powerful business expansion strategies in the world today. It has helped some of the most iconic brands expand faster than they have ever dreamed of growing organically.

Nowadays, franchising has evolved into one of the most dominant methods of business expansion and ownership in the U.S.

Before you decide to buy a franchise, it's important to ask yourself: Are you ready to take the leap into business ownership?

The secret ingredient

Franchising is as diverse as small business itself. The franchises you encounter will have different products and services, offer different fees and startup investments, and address different markets using different advertising and messaging.

But perhaps most important from a buyer's perspective, they will all require different skills to succeed. Some franchises will work best if you are a tenacious salesperson. Others may require you to be adept at management. Still others may require particular technical skills or industry expertise.

The one thing every franchise you will consider will have in common — and the one thing that will most influence the success or failure of that franchise — is you. Although the franchisor might have the secret sauce to make a business operate well, you are the secret ingredient to making it succeed.

Related: Find Out Which Brands Have Ranked on the Franchise 500 for Longest, Earning a Spot In our New 'Hall of Fame'

Determine if franchising is right for you

So how can you tell if franchising is right for you? There's no surefire way, but some introspection is in order. Take a look at the questions below, and give some serious thought to the answers.

  1. Is your family firmly behind you in your decision? Do you have adequate support mechanisms in place?
  2. Are you willing to follow someone else's system, even if you do not agree with some of the decisions being made?
  3. Are you willing to sacrifice in the short run to achieve your goals in the long run?
  4. Are you willing to work long hours if need be, especially at first?
  5. Do you thrive under pressure?
  6. Are you willing to share your results and your experiences with the franchisor?
  7. Do you have the necessary skills to run a business? Sales skills? People/leadership skills? Financial skills?
  8. Are you an optimist? How quickly do you bounce back from setbacks?
  9. Do you have the fire in the belly every business owner needs?

If you answered "yes" to most of them, you're on the right track.

Get started with The Franchisee Handbook

In The Franchisee Handbook, franchise expert Mark Siebert walks you through the process of vetting and buying a franchise, helps you ask the right questions of franchisors and yourself, and gives you the resources you need to decide if franchising is right for you. Siebert shows you how to do your homework before making what could be the greatest financial decision of your life. You will learn how to:

  • Accurately assess the risks of buying a franchise
  • Determine if a franchise is a good fit for your personal goals
  • Research and vet potential franchise opportunities
  • Create a startup plan that meets your business goals
  • Prepare your franchise for success

Why dream about owning a franchise when you can take concrete steps to make it happen today? With The Franchisee Handbook as your guide, you have the power in your hands to start your own franchise journey right now.

Mark Siebert

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® VIP

Franchise Consultant for Start-Up and Established Franchisors

Mark Siebert is the CEO of the iFranchise Group, a franchise consulting firm that has worked with 98 of the nation's top 200 franchisors. He can be reached at 708-957-2300 or at

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