What are franchise experts?
I’m being serious here.
Better yet, how do you know someone is a franchise expert?
Hold on. Maybe a better question to ask is this:
How can you know if someone is an expert on franchising?
And that’s what this post is all about.
Franchise Experts Know Franchising
Duh. Of course they know franchising, Joel. That’s what makes them experts.
But how much do they know, and how do they know.
The obvious answer?
Maybe they’ve owned, or have at least managed a busy franchise business operation. Either of those would be helpful, right. Let’s check that box.
Have these experts sold franchises?
If so, that may help them understand the business side-especially the numbers. But is that in itself enough to make them a franchise expert? Nah.
Have these “experts” taken formal classes on business and franchising? Written research papers?
If so, would doing those things make them a franchise business expert?
For example, I consider Scott Shane to be a franchise expert.
That’s because he’s written about all things entrepreneurial for years. Plus, he’s frequently called upon by top-level publications to share his knowledge. And he often includes franchising statistics…some of which he’s put together himself, using proven scientific research techniques.
Keep that in mind as I go back to folks who have studied franchising in a classroom setting being franchise experts.
By and large, unless their focus is on teaching and writing serious research papers about franchising (with some entrepreneurial content mixed in), it’s not a box I’m comfortable checking.
This next part is important.
Who Calls Them Franchise Experts?
You may not know this, but some people call themselves experts. And not just in franchising. From Jeff Goins:
- An author self publishes her first book on Amazon and is now considered a “bestselling author” and a “book marketing expert” who is entitled to tell other people how to launch their own bestsellers.
- An entrepreneur makes a few good decisions and suddenly becomes a “business coach” to an eager audience, ready to make it big.
- A guy with a “dad bod” drops 20 pounds in a few months, posts his results to Facebook, and—whammo!—he’s another fitness expert accepting applications for coaching clients.
Thanks, Jeff (who’s a legitimate expert on writing!).
Note: Jeff and I have exchanged Tweets etc. in the past. He’s one of the good guys. And I know his sister, Rhea, too. She’s another class act.
Regardless, Jeff’s right.
There are lots of so-called, or in this case, “self-called” experts.
A List Of Self-Called Experts On Franchising
Here’s where I get down and dirty.
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If you visit LinkedIn, and type “franchise experts” in the search box, 431,000 experts magically appear. That’s nuts.
Does that mean every person listed an authentic, proven franchise expert?
But they’re using the word “expert” somewhere in their profile and/or in their introduction. Along with these specific words.
- Franchise Expert
- Franchise Broker
- Franchise Consultant
- Franchise Coach
- Franchise Development Manager
- Franchise Owner
- Business Development Expert
- Entrepreneur Expert
This is getting scary. More…
- Franchise Specialist
- Franchise Marketing Expert
- Career Ownership Coach
- Franchise Matchmaking Consultant
- Franchise Advisor
- Franchise Investor
My LinkedIn research indicates that a lot of people call themselves franchising experts. But are they? Check out what I found.
A Massive Lack Of Franchise Business Experience
In a lot of cases, the people I found on LinkedIn who called themselves franchise experts hadn’t been in franchising for long periods of time. I’m talking less than 5 years.
In addition, a fair number of them came from other industries before they joined the franchise industry. Totally unrelated industries.
Like manufacturing, travel, college enrollment, sales, and more. Lots more. Industries and careers not related to the franchise industry at all.
But is that a bad thing?
That’s because we’re always learning.
“A man only learns in two ways, one by reading, and the other by association with smarter people.”
– Will Rogers
And franchising can be learned.
Not in two years time, though.
So what about franchise “consultants?”
Are they experts?
Are Franchise Consultants And Brokers Experts?
In some cases, franchising consultants, brokers, and coaches are experts. It depends on their years of service.
For instance, a franchise broker with one year of experience is NOT a franchise expert. No way-no how.
It’s impossible, unless the broker came from the franchise industry.
But what about a franchise consultant/broker with 5 years of experience?
Have they written well-researched articles on franchising?
Are they being quoted on legitimate news and small business/franchise websites?
Have they written a book on franchising?
Do they sound like they know what they’re talking about?
The Good News About Franchising Experts
Here’s the deal.
If I tell you someone is a franchise expert, you don’t have to believe me.
If someone is telling you they’re a franchise expert, you don’t have to believe them either.
That’s because you can found out for yourself in about a half hour’s time. And it’s easy to do.
Just Google their name.
Then see what comes up.
Now get more specific.
Google their name + “books.”
And try their name + “articles.” Or + “news.”
Spend a half hour or so checking out the results. Read through them.
That’s the smart way to find out how real their franchise knowledge is.
Lastly, did this post help you start to understand what an expert is and isn’t?
Do you feel more confident about determining the truth about franchise experts, and if they have the expertise needed to provide, truthful, factual franchising information?