The Government have been criticised today for failing to give away money! A £30m pot set aside to help small businesses gain technical, financial and management advice. The fund has only managed to provide £3.6m to help small businesses.
I would argue two things here; firstly that this seems a little strange because small businesses are very good at taking something for nothing, especially when it is designed to help them move their business forward.
Secondly it reinforces one of the most basic fundamental truths about starting a new business, which is, “you just don’t know, what you don’t know.”
How can you be expected to take advantage of a beneficial offer, particularly a free one if you don’t know that it exists?
Someone who has set up a small business before will contact the local council and government offices to check that they are taking advantage of all available funding.
In this case that looks like just over 10% of people, given that there was an allowance of £30m to cover the needs of the whole new business community.
This is one of the main reasons that if you are looking to start a new business you should look at Franchising first. Why guess when someone else can guide you?
Look at some independent businesses and try to imagine how well they could have done if they had a guide to help them from the very beginning.
I have been contacted by someone recently looking to sell his business, he has been trading since the early 1990’s and has an annual turnover that is less than I would expect for a Belvoir business at the end of it’s third year.
The level of the business is such that I regard it as a helpful start, but certainly not a business that I could sell to a Franchise Owner as a going concern.
Don’t put yourself in the position of being overwhelmed by things that you don’t understand and often have no interest in. Why open a business and spend time working out how everything works, what you need and what you do when challenged by your competitors, when you can concentrate on driving a business forward with the support in place that only experts can provide?
To put it another way, I see people who mention the Monthly Service Fee (like a royalty that is paid every month and based on turnover) and wonder if they can do it on their own and not have to pay a percentage of their income each month to a Franchisor.
What they don’t see is that a Belvoir business in the next town achieved three times the turnover of this independent in only five years. That business was successfully sold as a going concern and the new Franchise Owner is continuing to grow the business.
Neither of the two people who have now owned this Belvoir business had ever been in the property market before.
When I spoke to the Belvoir business owner about the MSF, he laughed at me and said simply; it is the best money he spends every year.
If you are looking at starting a new business and have high aspirations, please consider franchising and look forward to paying the Franchisor as much as you possibly can!
Because in actual fact, the amount you pay the Franchisor is a very good measure of just how successful you and your new business have become.
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