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One of the challenges franchisees face most consistently? Employee retention.
Finding and keeping good team members is a huge challenge for many local business owners across the USA and Canada. As a franchise, you can support and coach your owners to overcome this hurdle.
AC Inc. works with franchise owners, field support teams, and executive leadership in franchise brands so we’ve heard all sides of this challenge and we’ve seen how the happiness of employees improves the customer experience, sales numbers, and overall business growth.
Here are some of the tools and strategies you can use to support and proactively coach your franchisees as they navigate through this challenge, and help create better company culture overall in your brand.
Franchisees often struggle with finding employees and then experience high levels of turnover. If a franchisee can see that this is an issue, it’s easier as a Field Coach to start digging deeper into the why and seeking out solutions.
However, Field Coaches may hear franchise owners try to project blame outwards.
Franchisees may feel as though their employees don’t have a great work ethic or that they have run into bad luck in their hiring and that is why the turnover rate is so high.
So, like most issues with business coaching, the first step in addressing challenges with employee retention is to help your franchisees get to the root of the problem.
Sometimes, they have run into bad luck. If so, that is an opportunity to review hiring practices or recruitment processes to ensure they are doing due diligence.
However, often franchisees (like all of us) need to look inward and identify things like company culture and leadership as the culprits in employee retention struggles.
Here are a few tips for how you (as a field coach or operations pro) can help franchisees come to their own realizations about company culture & leadership:
More often than not, when employee retention is a big problem, franchisees can be doing a lot more to build a positive company culture and step into their role as a strategic leader in their business.
There isn’t a quick fix, and it can even take a couple of years to really improve, but deciding to build a better company culture is one of the most important steps a leader can take in their business.
Most people want the same things out of their job — respect, fair compensation, a feeling that they are doing something with purpose, and to have others around them that care about them.
When franchise owners are facing issues with company culture, it’s often because at least one, or a combination of the above are not being met.
The process of changing a company culture takes time, but there are some really great steps that you as a Field Coach or Operations Support Team can do to coach your franchisees through the improvement process.
Help your franchisee start working ON their business.
Taking time as a business owner to work ON your business instead of IN the day to day of the business is a huge step that can change a company culture for the better. Coach your franchisees on the value of focusing ON their business and how taking the step back from daily operations will improve their bottom line and culture.
Surveys to employees
Surveys to your franchisees’ staff to (anonymously) find out how they have felt supported and where you could improve as a company can be hugely beneficial. Especially when they truly know feedback is anonymous and they can honestly share helpful information.
Go The Extra Mile To Show You Care
Coach your franchisees to just check in to see how their team is doing. Ask about their family, ask about their hobbies. People want to talk about their dog and their running routine. Show genuine interest and remember that a lot of company culture is the small stuff.
Review Their Vision, Core Values, and Why
Sometimes, company culture can be an issue when a franchisee feels disconnected to their why, their values, and the vision for the business. Going back to these foundational elements in their business can help improve overall company culture.
Communicate + Collaborate
Franchisees may want to make these changes in private, but communicating with their team that they want to improve the company culture and what steps are being taken can be hugely beneficial.
A couple of other great steps – one of our Field Coach Specialists on the AC team (who has been a successful franchisee twice) created a committee of frontline employees to help him get feedback from their team, and implemented a “Coffee With the Manager” every month to genuinely connect with their frontline employees regularly.
Keep in mind that it is about the small things, and that continuous action over time is the key to making genuine culture change in their business.
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Have more questions about how to best support and coach your franchisees? We discuss topics just like these in the weekly AC Roundtables — collaborative virtual calls where peers learn from each other and problem-solve together.
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