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Franchising represents more than 10% of the private sector economy and 14% of the jobs
If you’re looking to have your own fast food franchise, here’s a typical scenario. You will have to have $175,000 that isn’t borrowed, provide 40% of the funds (also not borrowed) it takes to open the restaurant which can range from $400,000 to $750,000, and find a profitable location. Due to the complication of the franchise game, Joe Mathews, Don DeBolt and Deb Percival pulled their expertise in their new book, Street Smart Franchising (Entrepreneur Press, July 2006). It does what other franchising books won’t-it reveals the challenges within the franchise game using rare stories taken straight from the trenches.
In the U.S. alone, there are an estimated 2000 different franchisors as well as more than 770,000 retail outlets. These retail outlets employ over 8 million people, and account for more than 1 trillion dollars in annual sales. Mathews, DeBolt and Percival offer an in-depth look into what happens during the investigation and ramp up of a franchise business as well as “real world” tactics and strategies for succeeding in franchising. They also demonstrate how humanity impacts franchising. For instance, most entrepreneurs naturally resist external controls and systems, meaning the people most likely to purchase a franchise are least likely to follow the system they just invested in.
What makes Street Smart Franchising most unique is the fact that it offers “street smarts” as opposed to “book smarts.” Mathews and DeBolt realize that what’s taught in the classroom doesn’t always work in real life. Case studies can’t help a franchisee when they awaken at 1 o’clock in the morning for the third sleepless night in a row because they are consumed by the stress of a start up business. However, a franchisee can pick up Street Smart Franchising and discover high stress and loss of sleep is normal and temporary in the start up stage of the life cycle of their business as well as find successful strategies for managing stress during this critical stage and how to successfully navigate towards the next stage.
Joe Mathews has worked as a franchising manager for Subway, Blimpie, Motophoto, and Entrepreneur Source. In 2002, Mathews founded the Franchise Performance Group and became a consultant, helping franchise companies excel in the business of franchising. Mathews resides in Connecticut with his wife and three children. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from the University of Connecticut.
Don DeBolt is former president of the International Franchise Association (IFA), one of the world’s oldest and largest trade associations representing the franchise community. He has served as a member of the Committee of 100 and the Public Affairs Committee of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; a member of the Department of Commerce's Industry Sector Advisory Committee on Wholesaling and Retailing for Trade Policy Matters; sat on the board of directors of the Small Business Legislative Council and the National Cooperative Bank's Retail Finance Corporation; and was a member of the National Congress for Community Economic Development Advisory Council.
Deb Percival works in franchise development and has an extensive background in writing. Before joining the world of franchising she worked in marketing for 20 years, owning her own public relations firm for 12 of those years. Her clients have included national and international corporations and her writing has received numerous awards for content, clarity and originality.