Franchise Success Call

10 Tips to Prepare your Organization for Growth 

culture leadership multi-unit franchising people Oct 27, 2021
Prepare your Organization for Growth

(Part 5 of the Multi-Unit Franchising Conference)

Since a few weeks ago, I've been writing about the main takeaways of the Multi-Unit Franchising Conference, to share with you valuable knowledge and ideas that you can implement in your business. Today’s entry: Scale your organization for growth with 10 best practices from a franchisee panel. 

Watch the Multi-Unit Conference series subscribing to our YouTube Channel and register at the bottom of this post to read the rest of the related blogs once they get published.

  1. Trust your franchisor

It will be very difficult to grow if you are in constant fighting or disagreement with your franchisor. Bill Noble, multi-unit franchisee from Pearle Vision, advised: if you want to grow, you should follow the franchise systems because the brand already has the knowledge, experience, and proven reliability that the model works. 

Rather than spending your time to change something in your franchise, trust the model and the path they have done and focus on your growth.

  1.  Mind the culture

Having a good culture is critical for growth and as the leader you must embody it. If the head of the company doesn’t represent and live by those principles every day, then the culture isn’t real. This also has to permeate to the internal leadership team. Everybody, from the top down, has to be able to learn it, live it, and enforce it. 

But beware: the culture may be adjusted if the situation calls for it. After the COVID hit, Bill had to change some of the cultural commitments of his organization to grant him some flexibility but still have a culture that he can be proud of.

  1.  Do smart hiring

As a leader, you should be aware of what are your skills, abilities, and what you do best, and hire the necessary staff for the rest, advised Joshua Morris, from Scooter's Coffee. That way you’ll have a balance of skills in your organization. 

He also recommended that, especially if you're in a growth mode, you should always be hiring. That way, the lack of leaders won’t limit your ability to open locations. 

On this matter, Jesse Koontz, multi-unit franchisee of Dog Haus, said you should hire people with experience to grow faster. Although this may be true, Heather Nery, from Taco Bell, shared how having bench planning is a necessary process for growth.

I agree with her 100%. Because when you promote from within you gain more loyalty and commitment because you are giving your employees the opportunity to also grow. 

Watch this video to develop your own leadership bench.

  1.  Find a purpose

A lot of people nowadays are more about a purpose than a paycheck. So Joshua urged franchisees to tie in a reason to be or to pursue a tangible benefit or contribution to the community to attract the new generation of collaborators.

  1.  Outsource when needed

This is a good option, especially when you’re starting a multi-unit enterprise because it makes sense to have some of the team members externally, like your accountant, bookkeeper and lawyers. As you grow, you can make them internal.

But consider this: if you have building facilities then you should hire a certified handyman to take care of all of the maintenance. Because, as Joshua pointed out, maintenance costs may be really high and having this professional internally will save you a lot of money.

  1.  Appreciate your employees

To Bill, this pandemic showed him who had the right character to work for his company and helped him really value those that stayed with him to keep his company growing.

View this video to learn all about the “Hire slow, fire slow”, a personal mantra of mine. 

In the case of Jesse, he shared how he is implementing retention bonuses for the people that stayed with him, as a reward for their loyalty. Heather mentioned that she hands over gift cards from other brands to recognize crew members or leaders that are performing well. 

  1.  Consider the acquisitions

This is how Joshua became a multi-unit franchisee. There are a lot of pros: you have an operating business with revenue, and you have historicals to improve the key numbers of the business.

When you acquire, a lot of the “unknowns” become “known”. But this comes with a challenge: changing the existing culture, which may result in a high turnover.

  1.  Set the growth environment

Bill has 82 units but wants to open 100 more. He makes all of his decisions based on that commitment. To prepare for his explosive growth in 2022, he’s currently building the back-office support, arranging the administrative structure, and acquiring the necessary technology.

Jesse outlined that having a technology back-office is critical. That way, you can have all of your numbers and business by hand in your phone to manage your operations at all times. 

  1.  Plan your growth

Single or multi-unit franchisees that want to grow into a large organization have to first determine how many units they want to operate, having a “go big or go home” mentality, and then make all of their decisions accordingly, says Bill.

Want to become a multi-unit franchisee? This is the first (and most important) step you should take.

On this matter, Joshua pointed out that you have to make sure you can execute that plan, and are not overcommitting, either to a number of stores or to a location, no matter how good it looks.

  1.  Share your growth plans

For Joshua, growing means giving other people more opportunities. So he recommended sharing the growth map with the employees, to make them aware of their development possibilities. This, he affirms, brings health and enthusiasm to the organization. 

Learn more information and business tips to scale into a successful company with the whole Multi-Unit Franchise Conference series. Follow the conversation on our social media and subscribe to our YouTube Channel to keep you posted on the following entries that will help you with your day-to-day challenges. You’re not alone, The American Franchise Academy is here to help you!


  • Would you rather hire an external expert or promote from within? Why?
  • What’s the best way to show your appreciation to your employees?
  • How many units do you want to grow into? 
  • What needs to be arranged in preparation for your company’s growth? A process, your structure, technology?