I wanted to share with you a little project that I’m working on. We have some barn cats coming, so I’m at the barn, but I need to build a home for them to be safe and secure. I’ve got this great little cat house that I’m building with a solid foundational structure with a path for them down here, so they can climb up and escape danger.

As I was building this, I was reminded of a mantra my wife and I had while building our franchise. As some of you know, my wife and I have invested in several Elements Massage franchise locations. I thought this might be a good message because there are many conversations in the marketing channels and franchise world about semi-absentee ownership or owning a franchise with passive income. 

All of those buzzwords sound great. But the mantra my wife and I had was that you have to build the business you want to own.

What does that mean?

It means you must build a foundation and put it into the structure within your organization. I’m not talking about the franchise systems or the customer acquisition strategies that the franchisor delivers as part of the business model they’re selling. 

Building Your Team

What I am speaking about is building your team. Hiring a general manager in your studio and then getting out of the way and allowing that general manager to do an excellent job for your business. That’s building the business you want to own; honestly, it takes a while.

In our case, my wife was frustrated. A year and a half into owning the business, I often heard her say things like, “I thought this was “semi-absentee.” I thought I was not supposed to spend all these hours on the business”. My response was, well it is, however, “you gotta build the business you want to own.”  If you want to own a business where you spend 10-15 hours a week on the business then what aspects of running are you no-longer going to be doing?  If you are not doing those things, who is?  This was the beginning of building the business we loved to own and were able to sell later at a premium. 

Building the Infrastructure

We started building the infrastructure. We focused on the projects/tasks she didn’t want to be doing as the owner. Then identified the projects/tasks the manager could or should be doing.

That was magic! Six to eight months later, my wife was working a solid 10 to 15 hours a week, just like the franchisor had sold in the beginning. This experience showed us she needed to build the business that she wanted to own. 

She enjoyed being out in the community, talking to the clients, and getting other people to know about our wonderful business. But she didn’t like doing things like scheduling and making sure that the massage therapist was there on time.  Managing the line employees, is where she needed to pull herself out of those roles and build some structure so that someone else could do an effective job. That’s what I mean by building a business you want to own. 

Interested in owning a franchise but not managing the day-to-day activities, consider semi-absentee franchise options. I bring a level of reality and experience-share into the process of identifying a franchise you may want to invest in.  Feel free to reach out to dweaver@franchoice.com.

David Weaver is the Founder of Franchise Your Freedom and a senior consultant with FranChoice, the premier national network of franchise consultants. David helps people all over the country find the right franchise fit by sharing his personal experience and philosophy on how to select the right brand.  He shares proven strategies and over a decade of experience growing franchise companies for himself with those that are doing it for the first time. You can learn more about David at FranchiseYourFreedom.