Volume 1, Issue 19
Don Hutson, CSP, CPAE
The High Performance Selling Edge
Sometimes the correct route is not always the easy route, which is why we often revert to selling features, advantages and benefits as opposed to selling value. When you sell value, you create life-long PARTNERSHIPS; and how is a partner different than a customer? It means that both parties are invested.
Which then means the people who are buying your product/service care about your success, and you care about their happiness. Don Hutson helps franchisees learn how to create a win/win! AND a life-long customer base!
He has worked with franchises like Krispy Kreme, Merry Maids, and Terminix (to name a few) and is your go-to franchise expert when it comes to selling value and delivering top tier customer service.
As you may know, Greg Nathan, international thought leader on building healthy franchise relationships, will be making 3 trips to North American in 2013. Not familiar with Greg’s foundational work? Here’s a short article from Greg identifying six reasons your franchise relationships may be dwindling:
Why Franchise Relationships Get Strained
Greg Nathan, Founder, Franchise Relationships Institute
“When I started in this business my franchisor treated me like royalty — now I am treated like royalties!”
This comment from a franchisee sums up the challenge facing franchisors who are striving to attract new franchisees while also maintaining a team of happy campers. Franchisors need to seriously consider this issue of franchisee satisfaction if they expect existing franchisees to recommend their franchise system to other people.
Of course, maintaining constructive relationships with franchisees is a lot easier to talk about than it is to put into practice. Indeed if you are a franchisor, this is possibly an ongoing challenge. There are six common reasons for this.
1. Stress. When people are stressed they get cranky and difficult to deal with. Whether you are a franchisor or a franchisee, financial and workplace pressures will always test your patience and resolve. If stress levels get too high they can cause erratic and hostile behavior which can lead to a breakdown in communication and relationships.
2. Change. The ongoing changes that have been sweeping the world are also impacting on franchise systems, resulting in a constant need to innovate. This means franchisees often have to adopt new systems, reinvest in their business and sell new types of products or services. Most people resist having change foisted upon them which can also create a strain in the franchise relationship.
3. The Law of Perception. We may think we have clearly explained something, but people will always put their own interpretation on what they hear. The saying “When perception meets reality, reality always comes out second best” is very true. What the listener heard is more important than what was said. For instance, franchisees sometimes misinterpret a franchisor’s motives for taking certain decisions and this can undermine the trust so important for a healthy franchise relationship.
4. The Franchise E-Factor. Franchisees will typically move through six psychological stages in their relationship with their franchisor. I call this the Franchise E-Factor, which is characterized by the stages Glee, Fee, Me, Free, See and We. Franchisees may quickly move from initial feelings of GLEE (“I am very happy with all you have done to get me established”) to the third, ME, stage (“I am working my guts out and you, Mr. Franchisor, are providing little if no value”). Not all franchisees make it to the sixth, WE, stage (“I can see that together we can achieve a lot more than if I just try to battle it out on my own”). The more franchisees that are stuck in the middle stages of the Franchise E-Factor, the more unrest there is likely to be in a franchise system.
5. Lack of respect. Whether it is called emotional intelligence, people skills or just good manners, franchisors need to show their franchisees adequate respect and consideration. Franchisor leaders that are overly authoritarian, intimidating or insensitive are likely to create a residue of resentment in their franchisees. At some stage this is likely to express itself as a relationship breakdown.
6. Incompetent support. Franchisees quite rightly expect to receive reliable support from people who know what they are doing. As a company grows it is common for the franchisor team to find itself out of its depth in managing the more complex demands of a larger corporation. This can also undermine its credibility and put strains on the franchise relationship.
At the core of every thriving franchise system is a healthy franchise relations culture. There is a limited opportunity to work with Greg in 2013, while he’s here in our neck of the woods (North America).
Contact Me to Check Greg’s Winter, Spring and Fall Open Dates
Don’t take my word for it, check out these comments from a recent senior executive who attended a 2-day custom Franchise Relations Boot Camp with Greg with his team:
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for Don Hutson
“The positive feedback on your keynote presentation at our franchisee convention is still coming in!…’excellent content’…’entertaining’…’goal-focused’…’interactive’…’on target’…our management team was thrilled with how you incorporated our business model into your program. You are on our ‘A List’ of Speakers!”
Kevin Bates, Senior VP
Precision Auto Care
“Don Hutson has been working closely with me and my team for two years in the areas of sales, customer service, team-building, personal coaching and planning. During this period, we have enjoyed sales growth of 50%, gained 30% in market share, and increased profits commensurately. Don’s wisdom and sincerity have made him an integral partner in our success. He delivers outstanding results!“
Scott Messmore, CEO
MBI Steelcase Distributors
“Don Hutson’s customized industry content, dynamic delivery, and expert facilitation skills made our Leadership Retreat a great success.“
Martin Edwards, President
National Association of Realtors
“Our day with Don Hutson not only enlightened our sales team but provided valuable tailored insights into new selling strategies. Our people are now utilizing his sales tools and quoting him often. I WILL invite Don back to speak at our sales meeting again soon!“
Stacey Callahan, Director of Marketing Essex Division
Assa Abloy Americas
“Don Hutson’s program on leadership and communications at our manager’s meeting was terrific. He got rave reviews and gave us practical ideas we can put to work immediately.”
Graham Smith, Vice President
“We’ve already received two of our surveys back and you got the only 5+’s I’ve ever seen (on a 1-5 scale)! You have helped establish our ‘Business Development Conference’ as a ‘must see’ event for our clients and we thank you.”
Terry McElroy, President
on Greg Nathan’s
Franchise Relations Boot Camps
“This is a relevant program for anyone in franchising regardless of your experience. It is easy to absorb and leads to ongoing self exploration.”
Joey St. John
Jump Bunch, Inc., Vice President Development &amp;amp; Operations
“This event effectively fused practical application and theory. It is also quite entertaining!”
Kumon North America, Field Consultant
“A powerful workshop that I know will bring change to our company.”
Children’s Lighthouse, Director of Franchise Relations
“Powerful motivating. Highly recommend + will! I can sincerely say this bootcamp has change my life.”
Children’s Lighthouse, Vice President
“Franchisors that one committed to a strong system can implement Greg’s ideas to increase profitability and moral immediately!”
Franchise Business Review, COO
“This program is a great spend for any franchise organization that wants to invest in the future success of their brand and franchisee family!”
Grand Traverse Pie Company, Director of Operations
“Great use of time + fantastic ROI.”
BrightStar Franchising, Inc., Senior VP, Financing/Controller
“It makes business consulting a fun and teachable concept for all participants.”
Big O Tires, National Training Manager
“Extremely interactive presentation that comes full circle, allowed you to realize a culmination of learning.”
America’s Best Franchising, Inc., Vice President &amp;amp; COO
“An intriguing and highly beneficial course that covers basically every part of the franchise franchisor/relationships.”
Oxi Fresh, Director of Call Center