Last week I mentioned that I’m now Chairman of the Approved Franchise Association. As Extra Help is a franchise organisation itself, I’ve always been aware of the bad reputation franchising can have. We became members of the AFA in its very early days …
At this time it was being run by Craig Brittain who was the founder. Due to personal circumstances Craig recently needed to step down from the lead role within the AFA and handed the reins to me.
“It was a great honour to be chosen to lead the AFA into the future!”
The number of businesses choosing to franchise over recent years has increased dramatically and that’s across a wealth of sectors. With previously only one other association in the industry, many were left with little or no choice for franchisor representation and collective membership.
Franchisors wishing to join the AFA must be able to demonstrate that their organisation meets the fundamental requirements of any successful franchise. They must be able to clearly demonstrate that their business is sustainable, viable, transferrable, open and transparent, but above all, ethical.
All of these requirements are really important to me, both as Extra Help and the Approved Franchise Association. What this means to me as a franchisor – and now heading up the AFA – is that Extra Help has to always be squeaky clean. My company and I lead by example and we pride ourselves on the support we offer our franchisees.
“Their success is paramount to us!”
So what does the AFA give to its members? Well, the most important part is the accreditation. A lot of potential franchisees ask if we are members of an association and it’s great to be able to say yes so confidently.
The AFA have tight rules on membership. A franchise company has to have been trading for at least a year and have submitted accounts to the Inland Revenue. We look at their franchise prospectus and associated financials and we also contact a couple of the company’s franchisees for testimonials.
We have lots of plans for the future and I’m already expanding the scope of what the association does for its members. September 2016 will see the first awards ceremony for franchisors, franchisees and franchisee employees. We are also working closely to partner businesses to give our members discounts on advertising and print.
“I’ve been a franchisor myself for almost five years now and I’ve become very passionate about the industry!”
As I’ve mentioned before, we’re also active members of EWiF (Encouraging Women into Franchising) and now, along with the AFA, we are leading the way within our industry.
For more information on becoming a member of the Approved Franchise Association in the UK have a look at our website or call on 0208 088 2400 to find out more.
Until next time …