No Painting Required for a Painting Franchise
Sounds counter-intuitive, doesn’t it? Shouldn’t someone running a business always have experience performing the services they offer their customers? As it turns out, there are several competing philosophies in small business management when it comes to previous experience in the sector, especially for franchise owners. In this article, we’ll explore the painting industry, and the reasons you can be highly successful – even with no painting experience at all!
Running a Business vs. Performing a Service
Business management and service work are different. Unfortunately, failure to realize this is a big reason why so many small businesses fail. 50 percent or more new businesses don’t make it past five years, and even more miss their financial goals.
Let’s consider this example: a service professional has been in the residential painting industry for 10 years. He is a highly-skilled employee, and feels that he’s reached the point in his career when he wants to be his own boss. So, he quits his job and opens up his own painting business. Two things happen: (1) this painter knows exactly who to hire, and the results are fantastic, but the business model is sloppy, revenue is sluggish, and he isn’t monitoring any KPIs or measuring growth. This is due to (2): because of his skill, the painter is often supervising (or even directly performing) the work, rather than running the business side of his company, effectively neglecting management.
Unfortunately, this scenario is all too common. Unlike service workers, experienced business professionals and managers understand the ins-and-outs of actually running a business, and know how to rely on the expertise of their recruited talent to perform the work itself. As mentioned above, knowing the business side of things rather than the industry technicalities is even more important for franchise owners, because so much of the industry know-how comes already embedded in the business model.
The Realities of Running a Painting Franchise
Let’s flip the script on the scenario above. A business-savvy manager purchases a painting franchise, but has no interest in picking up a paintbrush or climbing a ladder. This is perfectly realistic! Rather than painting, the experience and skills necessary to successfully operate a painting franchise include:
- Configuring a business according to the proven model
- Settling accounts and budgeting
- Networking and marketing
- Stocking inventory and equipment
- Recruiting and attracting great talent
- Attending community events and drumming up sales
- Attending franchisor events
- Communicating with customers
Notice how not a single one of those activities involves picking up a paint brush. Leaving the actual service work to your technicians and skilled employees frees up your time and attention for running a great business.
Not only can business-focused franchise owners rely on their talent to perform the services and work for customers, but they can also rely on the franchisor itself to provide invaluable support. Owning a franchise connects a business owner to a national network of resources in management support, marketing, continuing training and best practices, and more.