“ Summer time and the livin’ is easy…” Oh, Ira Gershwin knew of what he spoke! It is summer and the sun, warm breezes, clear skies and long days call a siren’s song to us all. Office staff is peeling off for vacation and well-deserved rest.
Don’t let our nation’s love affair with summer be a cause for franchise neglect. Look at your system and ask yourself:
1) Are my franchisees in their high season and needing more help?
2) Did we have an influx of new franchisees that are in the critical ramp-up phase?
3) When business picks up in the fall, are we prepared with the programs and deliverables the franchisees will need for success?
It is important that employees get vacation but before setting the schedule, look at the needs of your entire system. Make sure both the office and the franchisees will have adequate coverage during vacation cycles. Encourage people to take them in off-peak seasons so there is little disruption in franchise support. And don’t rub the franchisees’ collective noses in your team’s vacations. Many franchisees take years before the structure is set for vacationing. Don’t hide it, but don’t flaunt it either.
Also look at your Franchise Agreement carefully. Is your initial support such as site acceptance, lease review, grand opening assistance, training classes and more tied to particular time frames? If so, match those obligations against your pipeline so your commitments can be met. Remember: you too have to maintain compliance with the Franchise Agreement.
So, enjoy your “lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer” but think of the entire system as you schedule and plan. I hear Jamaica is lovely in December, too.