STARTING A FRANCHISE
Read the Franchise Document
The franchisor has to provide this comprehensive document under law to a potential franchisee. The document provides comprehensive information including potential expenses, earnings, and opportunities enabling you to take an informed decision.
Do your assessment
Do contact other franchisees in the business to gather their insights and views. What are their key takeaways? Wins? Pain-points? Rewards? What influenced them to begin a franchise? Does the franchisor provide sufficient support? This will help you decide and also mentally prepare you on what you need to do to make it a success.
Make a visit to an existing franchise
Visit a franchise during business hours to get a sense of how it all works – the process, the ambience, employees etc. Also speak to parents/ children to get their views on the school. Are they satisfied with the methodology, curriculum, care, environment etc. This is important as you will get an understanding of what is expected from a franchise on a day-to-day basis.
Evaluate the support offered
One assurance of going for a franchise is that you get all inputs needed to run the business – you don’t have to start from scratch and don’t have to navigate yourself. But this is only true when the franchisor offers the best possible support in all aspects of the business including marketing, advertising and promotions, IT, training and inputs on how to steer the business particularly in the initial days. This can make a big difference to business success.
Interact with the corporate headquarters
Do take time to visit the franchisors for a discussion at their headquarters. Learn about their infrastructure, resources, operations, management and the experts who work on this aspect of the business. Nothing like getting a first-hand look at how the corporate functions and their vision for the business.
Understand the terms of your franchise agreement
On you have firmed up a first-level interest in becoming a franchisee take time to understand the franchise agreement which clearly lists both your obligations. You could even consult a lawyer to understand the implications and review the agreement to ensure you are good to go with the terms of engagement.
Finance. On signing the franchise agreement
you will have to make a payment to the franchisor. This varies from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars. Most entrepreneurs go for a loan to meet such commitments. A franchisor with good support often has a franchise finance team to help you with the loan process.
Location for your business
Franchises usually have defined site/location requirements based on the nature of business – area, floor space, approach, connectivity, parking space, etc. Usually, real estate experts in the franchisor team will assist you in this matter.
Once you become a franchisee you will need to receive training which could be either online or through a training program at the franchise’s corporate headquarters. This will cover all aspects you need to know to run the business – from lead generation to addressing queries to deal closure to payments.
Starting your business
For those of you starting a business for the first time this could be as exciting as it is daunting. A franchise that provides excellent support helps you through this. Usually a team assists you through the cycle to ensure you have everything in place before you begin
FINANCING YOUR FRANCHISE
Once your business plan gets formalized, the next important task is to arrange for capital, an aspect most first-time entrepreneurs would not be familiar with considering few would have availed a business loan from Small Business Administration (SBA) or a bank. A franchise with reasonable standing could assist and advise you on obtaining such funding.
At Joyous Montessori, we have a comprehensive process to evaluate franchisee applicants and offer valuable inputs and information on the various aspects of funding. Our finance team will review the financial projections and the available finance options before making optimal recommendations.
OPERATING A FRANCHISE
Key pointers for a succesful Franchise
The most important of them all, customer feedback is perhaps the most direct measure of how you are faring. Positive feedback builds your reputation while negative feedback can impact your brand adversely. You need to get a sense of what you have been doing right and how to improve it and what has gone wrong and how to rectify it to control further damage.
Get active locally. Participate in events, sponsor / co sponsor charitable events and programs and get to know your community better. Your potential customers or influencers are right there.
Become part of several professional organizations such as industry associations so you could exchange ideas with other professionals in your space. Franchises usually host an annual meet where you can share views and get back with valuable insights in the business.
Put together a talented team
Like in any service business, people make all the difference. Look for, hire, and retain people who are intelligent, hard-working and more importantly passionate about the domain you are in. Ensure they participate in decision making and involve them in your operations.
Take advice from your franchisor
Most popular franchises are in business a long time and have perfected their processes over a period of time building an invaluable repository of knowledge. They know what works and what doesn’t and this could be invaluable in building your own business. The franchisor/franchisee relationship can be very symbiotic and trustworthy enriching both over a period of time.
Typical Joyous Montessori franchisees are successful people, usually professionals with good corporate careers. They are well settled, too young to retire, looking for a change and eager to explore a business opportunity.
The best part of taking a franchise from Joyous Montessori is that no prior experience in teaching is necessary. You just need to be committed, passionate and have the patience to identify the right resources whether they are teachers or office support to establish a school that would be well recognized over time.
The opportunity is huge considering that 8.4 million children in the U.S. have two working parents (Source: Child Care Aware of America, 2016). In fact the demand for quality preschools and childcare is increasing and Montessori education is among the most proven and popular methodologies worldwide.
As part of on-boarding, we provide our franchisees with a detailed training program covering all aspects of running a Montessori school. Franchisees will be given an opportunity to learn while shadowing existing school owners / directors. Our experience will help you find the right location, hire the right resource and setup a successful business. On an on-going basis we will provide you with the requisite help and support on operations.
On an on-going basis we will provide you with the requisite help and support on operations.We will share information on how other franchisees are addressing issues and work closely with you to put together a plan that helps you achieve your objectives. Our experts will help you with your queries and will provide you with the required guidance to continuously improve your performance.
MARKETING, ADVERTISING AND PROMOTIONS
Sharing information about us in the communities we operate in and creating the right messaging is critical to the establishment of a franchise and the creation of a brand. We have in place a vibrant advertising and promotions initiative that creates marketing and advertising material to help you publicize your school and ensure the required traction to meet your objectives.
Joyous Montessori uses the latest in technology to store data, deliver content and communicate with all stakeholders associated – teachers, administrators, parents, advisors, franchisees etc. This ensures a quick and seamless delivery of information enabling easy management.
Our team of professionals has rich experience in Montessori education, school management, finance, real estate, legal aspects, IT and various other issues relevant to managing a successful franchise.
As a franchisee, you will be guided by us on these issues enabling you to set up a successful business.
A visionary with over 20 years of experience in growing businesses. Mani was with a large IT services organization for close to 15 years, specializing in business development where he led large teams in managing global clients across various domains. Mani is recognized for his strategic thinking, inspiring leadership and drive and has built several winning teams in his career. He is a strategic advisor to various organizations and entrepreneurs. Mani’s prior experience includes a successful education franchise which grew, under his leadership, into a nationally recognized brand in elementary education. Mani has helped many businesses grow by providing them right and timely advice on various aspects of franchising.ess.
The institute director of Joyous Montessori schools. Vandana has several years of experience in Montessori education and management. Vandana's love for children encouraged her to pursue and obtain the Montessori teacher certification from Collin County Community College. Her work as a teacher at a Montessori school helped her learn the practical aspects of running a Montessori, before she moved on to establish and run Joyous Montessori in 2010. Vandana is actively involved in all aspects of the school including recruitment of teachers, promotions, managing school financials and ensuring compliance of records as per DFPS regulations for daycares. Vandana holds an MS in Accounting– this helps her manage both the operational and financial aspects of running the Joyous Montessori schools.
An entrepreneur par excellence. Mahavir began his entrepreneurial journey in 1995 with software training and customized software Development Company. He has worked with various consulting firms advising their clients on IT solutions and leading global delivery teams. Mahavir co-founded Joyous Montessori in 2010 along with Vandana Semwal, an initiative that has since grown. He was responsible for taking over 3 schools and turning around their performance and making them successful and profitable.
Mahavir is also into sale, purchase and lease of commercial properties. Mahavir holds an MBA in Global Business from the University of Texas, Dallas, and envisions establishing Joyous Montessori Franchises not just in USA but Worldwide. He enjoys mentoring and guiding others in the daycares space and in real estate investment and hopes to encourage all teachers at Joyous to start their own school if they wish to.