The following is a guest post from Joe Caruso.
Farewell to a Friend and Colleague – Fred Harms
I spoke with Fred on Friday, he was on top of his game and the world. He was having great success in his new role as vice president of L’Oreal’s SalonCentric division and had just picked up his children after missing them while on-the-road the past two weeks.
Fred was fully invested in his work, but his family was his most precious endeavor. He worked tirelessly, loved franchising and franchise people, but there was no question that first and foremost Cole, Caroline and Christopher were the center of his universe.
Fred was exciting to be around, easy to like, quirky and witty, kind and thoughtful. He was an honest man worthy of your trust. And on Monday it was over, with no forewarning, no indication or telltale sign that a life well lived was to end without realizing its full measure. Debbie, Fred’s cherished fiancée, tearfully called me to let me know he was gone, and that I’d never get another Friday afternoon call.
I trusted Fred, he was my friend and I will miss him greatly.
Are we there yet? That’s what I posted on Twitter about the upcoming IFA Convention in Las Vegas. I truly feel like a kid in the backseat of a long family road trip. I can’t wait to get there. I’ve been looking forward to it for quite some time. But now that it’s within reach, only a couple of days away, my excitement is peaking. Yes, are we there yet? How many more hours until we get there? Well, when we do get there I’m going to do this and that. Let’s just call it the kid in a candy store syndrome.
It is an exciting time in franchising. Riding the heels of the positive Franchise Business Economic Outlook 2011 report, and news about even the slightest loosening of business credit, it’s definitely an exciting time to be a part of franchising.
Year-long improvements at the IFA, a new CEO and President, Steve Caldeira, who by the way was just named to the board of directors of the Small Business Legislative Council, a new and improved website and social media presence, some great new people including Matt Haller complementing some great IFA veterans including Alisa Harrison, Paul Rocchio and Scott Lehr, just to name a few, just lends to the strength of the franchise community. Great work over the past year by IFA Chairman Ken Walker and anticipation of Jack Earl, a multi-unit franchisee, as incoming Chairman further exemplifies the focus of the IFA. Definitely too many to thank on the recent segment of Franchise Today as we only had an hour. But I believe all of you at the IFA and everyone else in franchising knows who you are.
To the many guests my co-producer Joe Caruso has scheduled to be on Franchise Today over the past year, I thank you as well and look forward to meeting all of you in person at the Convention. Again, many to mention but allow me to try…
Many thanks to Steve Caldeira for taking the time out of an unbelievably busy schedule to discuss the franchise business economic outlook, Alisa Harrison for helping to coordinate Steve’s appearance as well as her guest appearance on Franchise Today, and to Ron Feldman and Darrell Johnson for their great insight into franchise finance.
Of course, I can’t forget the many lawyers Joe has scheduled for both our popular legal eagle franchise series and individual segments where we discussed a wide range of riveting, relevant topics within franchising. To Warren Lewis for his great Franchise Sellers Handbook, to Lane Fisher for his fabulous perspective on Franchise Performance Representations, to Jonathan Redgrave for his discussion about the legal aspects of social media within franchising. To Michael Webster, franchisee attorney and strategic chair at the International Association of Franchisees and Dealers, and to Leslie Curran for her insight into utilizing franchise brokers effectively. And, to Arthur Pressman, who took time out of vacation on the Cape to spend an hour talking about franchise litigation. To all the attorneys that appeared on Franchise Today, I say thank you.
On the pr side, I thank Brad Fishman and Rhonda Sanderson for two very candid conversations on Franchise Today. Of course, thank you to my most recent guest, Jack Monson, another pr genius. To Mary Ann O’Connell who is always a pleasure to speak with, to Michael Stone for sharing his vision with the Professional Athletes Franchise Initiative, and to Nancy Weingartner and Franchise Times for time spent visiting with me both on and off the air, always providing compelling franchise news and sneak peeks at upcoming issues.
On the technical side of things I thank BJ Emerson and Jeremy La Duque for their insight into social everything. And let’s not forget the franchisors and franchisees that Joe has brought through our virtual studio including Amy Nichols and Deb Evans, and Dave Melton who shared his experience and success as a Dominos franchisee.
What an unbelievable “who’s who” in franchising that Joe Caruso has brought to the table for Franchise Today. Certainly, I’ve missed some and I do thank you as well. And look forward to meeting everyone at the IFA Convention.
Last, but definitely not least, I do thank my co-producer, trusted advisor, and sometime chaplain and therapist, but mostly friend, Joe Caruso. Without him Franchise Today would not be the leader in franchise media as it is today. I can’t thank you enough.
The following article was written by franchisEssentials Guest Author, Joe Caruso. Joe is a respected franchise veteran with 19 years of extensive franchise management and development experience, spending the better part of his career in C-level positions, most recently as Chief Development Officer at Kidde Academy. He is quite active in franchise circles and frequently participates in LinkedIn franchise group discussions and at many franchise-related events from Washington D.C. to Philadelphia. Joe routinely shares his perspective and insight that has proven beneficial to several franchisEssentials startup and emerging franchise clients. We look forward to his continued participation and contributions.
Of course you’ve heard about the recent franchise fee giveaways that some franchisors have publicly announced. Is it a good idea? Does it diminish the brand to prospective franchisees? What does it mean to existing franchisees that invested at full price?
Certainly not charging a franchise fee might seem like an attractive offer to prospective franchisees. And franchisors that usually take this approach argue – “we make our money from royalties not franchise fees”. While that belief might rationalize the decision to forgo upfront fees it doesn’t sufficiently address the realities of franchise recruitment and the relative expenses. A franchisor might make “its money” from royalties, but it pays for selling costs, lead generation marketing, legal compliance and development sales/support personnel typically from upfront franchise fees.
Logic of forgoing upfront fees escapes me. It seems to me if your cost per sale is for example $15K, your franchise fee is $30K and you want to sell more franchises you could instead of giving away your upfront franchise fee you might invest more money in your franchise recruitment marketing budget?
What are your thoughts?