Burnout can be common among small business owners and franchise owners. At some point after years of operating a business they love, they may feel as though they have hit a plateau with their revenue, growth and perhaps their own motivations as well. Owners may forget the drive and passion that helped them pursue owning their own business in the first place. This burnout feeling isn’t unusual. It’s the entrepreneur in a franchisee trying to remind them that there may be something new to learn; training, skills, technology, networking, etc. A business needs to constantly be evolving in its market, and so does its owner. Employees, managers, and small business owners all experience burnout at some point. No one is immune! Give yourself a “timeout” from the business. Step back and remember why you got into your business in the first place. Those underlying goals and motivations have likely not changed. What has changed is your environment, the market, perhaps competition, personnel, etc. Franchise achievement comes from the partnership of a strong franchisor and the hard work, determination, and drive of the franchise owner. Your franchisor should do their part. You focus on your part.
As a franchisor, it’s important to take proactive measures to prevent franchisee burnout as much as possible. Leading franchisors continue to offer new training opportunities, system software or technology to help grow and operate their franchise more efficiently and effectively. Many will meet annually, semi-annually or even quarterly with each franchisee and review their goals with them. How are they doing with obtaining their current goals? What can they do to continue to meet each goal? What are new goals they would like to set? Sometimes, when owners experience burnout or a plateau in their ownership, it’s helpful to have individual attention and motivation from the franchisor, as well as builds trust and stability between the franchisor-franchisee relationship. Perhaps a mentor or team bonding activity among owners would increase comraderie. Owners helping each other through certain developmental phases and growing pains; helping each other reach goals.
Of course, not all franchisees are at the same point in their ownership. Some are just beginning while others have been operating their franchise for years. Thus, each owner should be focusing on different goals to ensure proper growth and development as an owner and as an individual. It’s always important to understand what a franchisee’s personal goals are as well as professional goals. Personal goals tend to fuel professional goals and are what drive motivation to reach their professional goals.
As a franchisor, there are four strategies for helping franchisees to avoid burnout and plateaus during their ownership and allows them to continue to meet their goals:
- Engagement. When franchisees are constantly able to engage with other franchisees and the franchisor, they stay motivated. Whether it be by voicing concerns, suggesting new ideas, or simply catching up on a personal basis; franchisees who engage more, feel more satisfied in their ownership and stay more driven in their focus towards their career growth and goals.
- Stay involved. Similar to engagement, but more focused on keeping the franchise system innovated with feedback and suggestions. Franchisees are closer to the clients and employees on a daily basis than the franchisor and have valuable input. Staying involved keeps franchisee incentive up by constantly seeking to improve the overall system, feeling and knowing they can make a difference.
- Personal Attention. Because each franchisee is at a difference crossroads in their ownership, as well as life, personal, one-on-one attention is the best service a franchisor can provide to a franchisee. Relating to the franchisee on a professional and personal level not only helps to build a solid relationship, but also allows the franchisor to understand the franchisee’s personal goals and growth needed to be prosperous. When a franchisee realizes what goals they need to set from a personal aspect, it ignites their inspiration to excel in their ownership.
- Competitive Expectations. Setting revenue and financial goals, comparing franchisee performance against their past presentation, as well as other franchisees, and the industry’s highest owners will fuel the competitor in them, compelling them to reach further and further to accomplish their goals for growth.
It’s common for small business owners to feel burnout or encounter a phase of decreasing motivation or passion. This doesn’t mean it’s time to throw in the towel. It simply means the owner needs to rediscover their inspiration for starting their business in the first place; the passion that drives their desire to make their mark within the industry. Strategic goal planning, personal attention from the franchisor, comraderie among franchisees, and refueling their competitive spirit builds a strong road map for a prosperous future.
If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a franchise owner in the homecare industry, we encourage you to check out our FirstLight Home Care Franchise Opportunity website, where potential owners can hear from current franchisees and receive answers to their questions on owning a FirstLight Home Care franchise. You can also download our Franchise Information Kit, or even give us a call. We’re available to help you in your search for prosperous ownership anytime: 1.866.985.5348