Greg Nathan's Franchise Relations Tip #2

Why franchisees say yes but mean no

Here’s a riddle for you. Three frogs are sitting on a log. One decides to jump. How many are left?

The answer is three. Deciding to jump is different from actually doing it.

If you are a franchisor you will have launched changes to your concept from time to time. And although you no doubt thought these were great ideas, you probably met with resistance from your franchisees.

While this can be frustrating, some psychological resistance to change is a natural part of being human. The trick is knowing how to work with this resistance.

Initially it usually manifests as silence. When faced with something new, franchisees need time to get their minds around what it means to them. It is easy to mistake this silence for agreement.
There is an element of wishful thinking here. We present our idea and, almost as an afterthought, we ask if there are any questions. If not, we assume everyone is on board. Big mistake.

People may even agree that in principle the idea is a good one. However this is different from agreeing to do it!

If you want your franchisees to embrace a new initiative, (remember they are the ones that have to make it work), you must take them through a process which engages their heads and their hearts. This

involves providing good data and open two-way communication. And most importantly, it should be consistent with your culture. Do this and people will move through 5 stages – from initial silence, to concern, to mild frustration, to acceptance and finally to commitment. As I said it’s a process.

Register for Profitable Partnerships Boot Camp! May 25 & 26 in Denver. Hope you can join us!

Greg Nathan
Managing Director
Franchise Relationships Institute

CFE LogoAttendees will earn 300 Education Credits towards completion of the
Certified Franchise Executive (CFE) accreditation or CFE re-certification
by attending this program.

Greg Nathan, Managing Director of Franchise Relationships Institute


Often described as the international thought-leader and expert on franchise relationships, no one understands the unique challenges and rewards inherent in the franchisee-franchisor relationship like Greg and his team of psychologists at Franchise Relationships Institute. They have spent the past 20 years researching the science of successful franchise relations.

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