18 Sep 17:00 by Alejandro Rodriguez Garcia


Today I'm going to discuss setting up your own business. Being in business for yourself is exciting (take it from me!) but it is a very big step.

One way to start a business that may be less stressful is with a franchise. You may have noticed that Cross Deck now has information about franchises - take a look here now.

Many companies offering franchises target ex-forces staff. They like your in-built sense of discipline, smart turnout and ability to follow a system. But a lot of people don't understand what a franchise is, so here’s a quick guide.

A franchise has been described as "a way of starting up in business on your own but not by yourself." An established company (the franchisor) offers to help others (the franchisees) start up copy-cat versions of the main business, using its name, logos, operating methods and support. This can offer a big advantage - you start off with a name that is already known. You can also use a franchise to get into a new career as franchisors don't usually mind if you have no experience in their business sector.

Of course they don't offer this opportunity for free. You have to invest an amount of money up front to become a franchisee. In exchange the franchisor should give you full training in its business methods, help with launching and marketing your new business and on-going support as you grow and run it, for which you usually pay a monthly fee to the franchisor.

There's a huge range of franchises - those shown on our site alone can help you to set up a business in logistics, gas and electricity safety inspection, fitness, garden maintenance, tool sales and plumbing, but there are many more.

Will it suit you? You must be entrepreneurial enough to enjoy building up a new venture, but at the same time willing to follow someone else's business methods. You'll need to be a hard worker as your franchise may take up all of your time, especially at first, and confident talking to customers, as all franchise involve marketing your services.

As well as the initial investment you'll need enough money to pay your bills until the business gets into profit (usually about 12 to 18 months), and you'll need to select the franchise carefully so it suits your own ambitions, working style and lifestyle.

Look before you leap - research franchising on the net and shop around for a franchise that suits you. 

Until next time,

Dixie Dean