Franchisees are the heroes of the American economy.
According to IFA’s Economic Impact of Franchised Businesses Vol. 3, which incorporates U.S. Census data, the franchise industry consists of more than 825,000 businesses that employ more than 9.1 million people. The total economic impact of the industry is $2.1 billion — 9 percent of the private output of the U.S. economy.
Going into business for yourself isn’t easy. It requires drive and determination in order to overcome numerous challenges such as dealing with regulations, cash flow issues and payroll. Franchising is powerful because it gives business owners the systems and infrastructure to help overcome those challenges.
When someone buys a franchise and succeeds, it impacts a community. I’ve seen people pray about it. They’re investing so much of themselves in the business — from a leadership perspective, it’s the largest burden they have. They want to create jobs and see their community thrive, and they want to demonstrate how people can be very successful by serving their community.
Starting a business requires a substantial investment and a lot of hard work, and it is not without risk. Thanks to the support of franchisors, more franchise businesses succeed compared to nonfranchised startup businesses. Franchise consulting company FranNet, which works with more than 200 brands, recently released a report showing that of the 1,260 companies it helped start in 2006, 85 percent were still operating five years later. The Census Bureau has reported that, overall, only 50 percent of small businesses are still operating after five years.
While franchising improves the odds for new business owners, they are still taking a risk — and the fact that franchisees are willing to take that risk is what makes them heroes. They are intent on building their own success by building a business. In the process, they lift those around them.
The IFA expects new franchises to create 168,000 jobs in 2012. The industry is putting people back to work, and it’s all thanks to people who are willing to dream big, and then work hard to make their dream a reality.
Tasti D-Lite chairman and CEO Jim Amos has more than 30 years of experience guiding successful franchise companies such as Mail Boxes Etc. He was inducted into the International Franchise Association’s Hall of Fame in February.