Are Today’s Franchisors Being Persnickety?

Professor outfit 1

(Mariel Miller contributed to this blog post)

Could you be getting a little too picky?

Are you turning away too many franchise buyers?

Are you shooting yourself in the foot by trying to be too particular about who you bring into your franchise system?


Franchise Buyer Assessments

There is a revived interest these days in assessment, testing during the franchise recruitment process. Why is it that franchisors and even brokers are looking for ways to assess the individuals they are engaged with during the due diligence conversations? Some believe assessment testing of candidates is nothing more than a deal killer, a way to slow down the process and even scare off a potential franchisee.

But savvy franchisors see it quite differently, says Mariel Miller, franchise performance expert and organizational consultant.

Back in 2000, when we brought assessment technology through the franchise channel, franchisors were leery of anything that would impact the sales process. There were only a few very high caliber organizations that understood the immense value that assessment could deliver. These were sophisticated companies with human resource departments and knowledge of job-matching or some experience with contemporary hiring practices.  Today, it’s much different; we even work with emerging franchises who want the benefits of assessment before they have one franchisee signed

So what are the benefits that these companies realize from such a process? “Regardless of what kind of testing a system uses, the vital ingredient is the Franchisee Role Analysis”’ says Mariel. “This is a process where we define, very specifically what it takes to be successful in the role of franchisee. In some cases, we also go into the field and assess top performers, but this is not necessary using the techniques and models we employ. Once we have identified a success pattern for a system, we then select the right instrument to assess incoming candidates. During the sales process, the franchise development person has vital information to form strong bonds, highlight aspects of the system that are crucial for the candidate to understand, and get an inside picture of their decision making style.  These benefits clearly outweigh the slight inconvenience of asking a candidate to spend ½ hour taking an on-line assessment.”



In addition to the profound insights gleaned from the instrument, some franchisors want to assess the degree of fit between an incoming candidate and the success model. With this information, the franchisor can then help the candidate build the right team to maximize the opportunity. We find the candidate enjoys the conversation as they too want to know the franchisor believes in their success.

Ultimately, in franchising, it is the responsibility of the franchisor to know the success criteria for each and every component of the business. Why would this be any different when it comes to its people? “Smart franchisors are seeing that they can create a proprietary and confidential model for selecting people as a way to further distinguish a brand” says Mariel, “especially in competitive sectors, this distinction can be critical for a company and a deciding factor for a potential franchisee.”

What do you think?

Is Mariel right?

(Mariel Miller is a speaker, consultant and performance improvement expert in franchising. She can be reached at mariel at thefranchiseadvisor dot com, or 732-298-0900.)

*Image courtesy of ragesoss, on Flickr


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  • Angel Biz Advisors

    I couldn’t agree more with Mariel. It is in frachisor’s best interest to make sure the franchisees they are “hiring” have same interest and goals and they fit well within the franchisor’s system. Without going through the assessment they might end up with some bad apples that can ruin the franchisor’s brand and future growth. You have to remember that the customers deal with the franchisees everyday and they will build the perception about your brand based on that interaction. If you are not careful with the types of franchisees you work with it can hurt your brand for a long time. That is why great brands such as Starbucks and Chiptole do not like the franchise model for their business.

    • The Franchise King

      Thanks for your comment.

      I think that Mariel’s words have to do more with franchisees buying in than employees.