You’re a hard worker, knowledgeable, dependable, and a go-getter. You’re the kind of employee any organization would covet. And now, you’ve decided to take advantage of your character and skills. You’ve made the decision it’s time to work for…you. The question is, do you start from scratch or join a team?

Some buyers thrive as independent business owners, while others are more likely to prosper as franchise owners. In reality, there are no easy answers to the independent business versus franchise dilemma. –

Points to Consider

Consideration Independent Owner Franchise
Personality Free spirited, sometimes a loner Must be a team player
Following the rules Like to make the rules, follow your own path Willing to follow the rules, prefers structure
Branding Prefer to build a brand from the start Relies on an established brand and reputation
Initiatives Want final say Prefer direction

There’s no Right or Wrong Answer

The success rate comparisons of the two are inconclusive and may have more to do with other factors. In general, people with independent personalities may be happiest as independent business owners while team players, who prefer structure, as a franchisee. Franchises offer the resource advantages of finance, advertising, product testing, human resources, operating systems, and supply chain logistics. Independents aren’t required to co-op advertising or forced to upgrade marketing, they may choose and change products, vendors, and shippers as they like. An independent operation may require a larger investment, whereas a franchise has some costs assumed by the franchiser.

What’s best for you?   

Begin by understanding what has worked best for you. At previous positions were you more productive when left to your own devices? Did working for a smaller operation with fewer rules and regulations make you happier, or do you want policies, procedures, and operations manuals? Do you do better in a structured environment? Knowing what has worked for you in the past may be the best way to decide what will work for you in the future.

Are you currently an independent business owner or franchisee?  We’d like to hear from you. How did you decide which way to go?