Tips for Branding Design Success – Riko’s in Stamford CT

Riko’s: Designed For Success…

Restaurant design plays a huge role in branding. Your guest’s total experience is the difference between success and failure. Especially in the franchise business. Small Business needs to watch how the Big Guys transform their restaurants into memorable experience their customers can take home…

Riko’s: Designed For Success
By Laurie Hilliard – FMM Contributor.

In our very visual world, consumers have developed a keen awareness of design. What we see and how it makes us feel impacts our response to our environment in virtually every facet of our lives. The importance and impact of design in the restaurant industry is an ongoing and growing trend for restaurants as they scramble for recognition. “The U.S. restaurant industry is huge: $800 billion in annual sales with some 625,000 restaurants each trying to set itself apart from the others. One effective way of differentiating a restaurant brand is to design around a theme or concept that conveys a story to customers as they dine.” Reports international architectural design firm, AD&V.

Vincent Celano, founder, and principal of New York-based Celano Design Studio says, “The guest experience starts when he or she walks in the door. ”READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE CLICK HERE”

SELLING & AWARDING FRANCHISES

“In sales, it’s not what you say; it’s how they perceive what you say.”
– Jeffrey Gitome
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Franchising, Be Your Own Boss, Venture, Shark Tank, Mark Cuban, Entrepreneur, Gig Society, Side gig, Franchise your Business

SELLING & AWARDING FRANCHISES
By Gary Occhiogrosso – FMM Contributor

Selling on every level is the principal work in any franchise organization in order to grow your franchise business. Whether it’s selling new franchises or creating systems to support your franchisees to grow their sales or selling your goals to investors, there’so business on the planet that exists without sales.

Have you given thought to the logistics? How do you intend to quickly respond to all the incoming calls, make follow-up calls and address all the prospects questions? How will you ever conduct discovery days, tour prospects to operating units or spend the needed hours to address their fears, concerns and objections? How will you manage your CRM, keep past inquirers in the loop or create buzz that may initiate new buyers and motivate past inquirers to take action now.

A consistent, timely sales effort rules the day. That’s our specialty… We sell! We make the initial contact, we qualify the prospect, guide the candidate through the application process, do the store visits, conduct the meetings & the numerous follow-up calls, the discovery day and work with the prospect each step of the way. You, the Franchisor can stay focused on building the operational side of your business.

One of the most important aspects regarding the franchise sales process is to practice timely response time and create value in the system. That comes from totally dedicated time & focus to the sales process, carefully planning a sales funnel that uses decades of experience, successful track record, industry credibility and franchise industry specific “know how”.

The various steps and numerous hours it takes to close a franchise sale are not something any startup or emerging franchisor should even be thinking about doing on their own.

There is no organization like Franchise Growth Solutions that offers not only a franchise consulting program but also earns its keep by selling franchises for you. It’s our “success-based” upside to offset the low fees for all the other services FGS provides.
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About the Author:
Gary Occhiogrosso is the Founder of Franchise Growth Solutions, which is a co-operative based franchise development and sales firm. Their “Coach, Mentor & Grow Program” focuses on helping Franchisors with their franchise development, strategic planning, advertising, selling franchises and guiding franchisors in raising growth capital. Gary started his career in franchising as a franchisee of Dunkin Donuts before launching the Ranch *1 Franchise program with its founders. He is the former President of TRUFOODS, LLC a multi-brand franchisor and former COO of Desert Moon Fresh Mexican Grille. He advises several emerging and growth brands in the franchise industry. Gary was selected as “Top 25 Fast Casual Restaurant Executive in the USA” by Fast Casual Magazine and named “Top 50 CXO’s” by SmartCEO Magazine. In addition, Gary is an adjunct instructor at New York University on the topics of Restaurant Concept & Business Development as well Entrepreneurship. He has published numerous articles on the topics of Franchising, Entrepreneurship, Sales, and Marketing. He was also the host of the “Small Business & Franchise Show” broadcast over AM970 in New York City.
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ABOUT FRANCHISE GROWTH SOLUTIONS, LLC
Franchise Growth Solutions, LLC is a strategic planning, franchise development and sales organization offering franchise sales, brand concept and development, strategic planning, real estate and architectural development, vendor management, lead generation, advertising, marketing and PR including social media. Franchise Growth Solutions’ proven “Coach, Mentor & Grow®” system puts both franchisors and potential franchisees on the fast track to growth. Membership in Franchise Growth Solutions’ client portfolio is by recommendation only. www.frangrow.com
Contact: [email protected]

Why Thin Crust Pizza is all the Rage in Franchising

While many new franchised pizza brands have turned to create your own, limited service concepts offering non-traditional, lower quality pizza, Riko’s Thin Crust has moved in the other direction. Offering full service, high quality, made to order pizza, salads, and Wings in a family-friendly casual setting. They practice all the steps in successful franchising

Why Thin Crust Pizza is all the Rage in Franchising

The “Think” Crust Concept behind Riko’s Pizza
By Laurie Hilliard – FMM Contributor.

The inspiration for opening a restaurant comes from many sources, Riko’s is rooted in the enduring values of family, a belief in simple homestyle food and finding the best means to serve the time-honored passion for pizza. Today Riko’s is an evolution of the classic mom and pop pizza places we all grew up with. It is familiar, inviting and smells delicious yet offers a modern next-generation twist designed to meet today’s fast-casual lifestyle. We like to say, “It’s a good place to be.” And that translates into “It’s a good place to be” all ‘round: a good place to eat, a good place to work and a good place to own.

Since opening our first location in 2011 in Stamford CT, our family-centric enterprise has evolved and adapted to the changing pizza industry, local real estate markets, and consumers’ lifestyles. We have developed two proven operating models in three locations; full-service, casual restaurant with full bar and the fast-casual model; take-out and delivery. Both models have three points of service: dine-in, call/online ordering for pick up and call/online ordering for delivery. And that’s unique in the casual dining space.

Our menu is a study (a labor of love, to be sure) in simplicity, in delicious food, and no-fail processes. Our signature 6-slice, thin crust pizza made from a 70-year-old recipe starting with a proprietary pizza dough and sauce, that tops a carefully crafted, streamlined menu. Best sellers like cheese, pepperonil and hot oil pizza satisfy family favorites while innovations, like Chicken Scarpariello, a host of salad pizzas, specialty pies like Hawaiian pizza, Mac ‘N Cheese Pizza and Veggie Pizza tempt guests looking to try something new. Our baked (not fried) chicken wings, fresh-made salads, and tempting dessert selections offer a high-quality, family friendly, affordable meal to be enjoyed at our tables, at home or on the go.

Riko’s franchise opportunities are uniquely flexible, streamlined and turn-key. And while we have refined and tweaked our business models over the past 7 years, we have retained our core philosophy; a long-standing esteem for family and relationships, quality food from our own family recipes, and warm hospitality. Our respect for guests, our employees, and our community is the cornerstone of our success.

Franchise owners and guests alike are assured of consistency with every thin crust pie. Our proprietary, simplified cooking process draws on equipment, instructions and no-fail recipes that are easily perfected by cooks and non-cooks. We boast that we can teach anyone to make our pies with our process in about 10 minutes. That typifies the thoughtful approach we have taken to all aspects of the business. We blend our strong, family-based values with a simple menu, systems, and operations to ensure quality, consistency, and success. That’s the “secret sauce” for driving success and growth while keeping Riko’s a good place to be. Contact: [email protected]

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ABOUT RIKO’S THIN CRUST PIZZA
Riko’s Thin Crust Pizza is a chain of “new generation” pizzerias located in Fairfield County, CT. Using a recipe handed down for generations; Riko’s offers authentic Italian fare using the highest quality and fresh ingredients. Known for its thin crust pizza, Riko’s also offers a full complement of salads, wings, and other menu items. https://rikosfranchise.com/index.php

ABOUT FRANCHISE GROWTH SOLUTIONS, LLC
Franchise Growth Solutions, LLC is a strategic planning, franchise development and sales organization offering franchise sales, brand concept and development, strategic planning, real estate and architectural development, vendor management, lead generation, advertising, marketing and PR including social media. Franchise Growth Solutions’ proven “Coach, Mentor & Grow®” system puts both franchisors and potential franchisees on the fast track to growth. Membership in Franchise Growth Solutions’ client portfolio is by recommendation only. www.frangrow.com Offer by prospectus only.
Contact: [email protected]

10 Simple Steps To Evaluate a Franchise Opportunity

Whether you’re a multi-unit franchisee, an individual franchise candidate or a representative of a private equity group these 10 steps will allow you to perform a preliminary franchise review. Although a first step in the franchise evaluation process, it can provide an overview of a franchise investment opportunity at minimal cost and expense.

10 Simple Steps To Evaluate a Franchise Opportunity

By Ed Teixeira – Chief Operating Officer of Franchise Grade

A good deal of information has been written and published about how to evaluate a franchise opportunity. Whether one is an individual or represents a private equity firm, it’s important to be able to evaluate and vet a franchise before conducting a full-scale analysis. The following is a way to do an initial franchise review, before investing a lot of time and money.

To perform this 10- step review, you’ll need a copy of the Franchise Disclosure Document for each franchise you’re evaluating. An FDD can be obtained from the franchisor and they’re available from certain Franchise Registration States or can be purchased from franchise vendor sites. If the decision is to pursue a specific franchise opportunity, a complete and detailed evaluation should follow this 10-step preliminary review, which should include utilizing legal and financial professionals with franchising experience.

Contributing to the 10 steps was Mario Herman, a Washington D.C. based franchise attorney.

Following are 10 preliminary steps for evaluating a franchise opportunity:

1. Franchisor Management-review the management background and experience of key franchisor executives and support staff. It’s important that they have experience in the business sector and franchise industry. Franchisor leadership should have a cross section of business skills and experience.

2. Franchisee Territory-The territory should be defined in a consistent manner and allow for franchisee growth. Verify if the franchisee territory is Exclusive, Protected or Open. Franchisors that grant small open territories can result in conflicts among neighboring franchisees as some franchisees will be more aggressive than others. There is also the potential for a dispute with the franchisor over the territory.

3. Franchisee Fees-identify if the franchisor charges other fees for services above and beyond any royalty and ad fund fees. Additional continuing fees for software usage and licensing fees, when added to royalty and ad fees will increase expenses. Be sure that the initial franchise fee and the continuing fees are comparable to similar franchises.

4. Item 20– review the growth of new franchisees and compare to franchisee terminations. This number will reveal net franchisee growth and prevent one from seeing misleading data. Also, the number of Franchises Sold But Not Opened can indicate if the franchisor is devoted more resources to selling franchise versus the growth and development of existing franchises. The tables in Item 20 contains information which can indicate positive or negative performance results.

5. Financial Statements– Unless the franchisor is a start-up there should be three (3) years of audited financials available. Look for a continuing and growing stream of revenues from franchisee royalties. Initial franchise fees should not represent the preponderance of revenues unless it’s a start-up.

6 .Required Suppliers and Rebates– Does the franchisor requires purchases from specific vendors? Compare that information to the data in Item 8, which shows the percent of purchases from the franchisor and other vendors and suppliers. In addition, does the franchisor receive rebates from vendors and suppliers and if yes, how much? Many rebates from required franchisee vendors could compromise the trust between a franchisor and its franchisees.

7.Intellectual Property-Does the franchisor have any confidential,proprietary information or trade secrets that distinguish the franchise from the competitors? Check Items 13-14 of the FDD to determine how unique the system is, and whether the franchisor has a comparative advantage over its competition. Also, does the franchisor have the marks trademarked? Make sure that the franchisor properly and legally controls the brand name, and there is no potential dispute over ownership of the marks.

8. Item 19-it’s important that the franchisor makes a Financial Performance Representation under Item 19. Any established franchisor should make an Item 19 disclosure. The more detailed the financial information the easier to evaluate franchisee performance and make financial projections. If the franchise is a startup there should be financial data for company locations.

9. Franchisor Litigation– franchisor-franchisee litigation is a barometer of the state of franchisee-franchisor relations, is it positive or negative? Has the franchisor acted to protect its system and brand or is it a case of franchisees having disputes with the franchisor, because they are not receiving support or meeting their financial expectations? Some medium to large franchisors reports no litigation while some smaller franchisors may have had many legal disputes. The amount and source of litigation is an area that should be reviewed since it be can be a red flag.

10. Franchisor Training Programs– Franchisee training should be comprehensive and presented by more than one person. Training that includes a portion of onsite training for new franchisees provides real-world franchise experience that the classroom can’t duplicate.

Whether you’re a multi-unit franchisee, an individual franchise candidate or a representative of a private equity group these 10 steps will allow you to perform a preliminary franchise review. Although a first step in the franchise evaluation process, it can provide an overview of a franchise investment opportunity at minimal cost and expense. If you decide to proceed with a specific franchise opportunity, be sure to utilize an accountant and franchise attorney to guide you along the way.
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About the author
Ed Teixeira is Chief Operating Officer of Franchise Grade and was the founder and President of FranchiseKnowHow, L.L.C. a franchise consulting firm. Ed has over 35 years’ experience as a Senior Executive for franchisors in the retail, healthcare, manufacturing and software industries and was also a franchisee. Ed has consulted clients to franchise their existing business and those seeking strategic solutions to operational, marketing and franchise relations issues. He has transacted international licensing in Europe, Asia, and South America. Ed is the author of Franchising from the Inside Out and The Franchise Buyers Manual and has spoken at a number of venues including the International Franchise Expo and the Chinese Franchise Association in Shanghai, China. He has conducted seminars, written numerous articles on the subject of franchising and has been interviewed on TV and radio and has testified as an expert witness on franchising. He is a franchise valuation expert by the Business Brokerage Press. Ed can be contacted at [email protected]

Taboonette Middleterranean – One of NYC’s Up and Coming “Better For You” Brands

Taboonette® is revolutionizing the falafel shop by filling pitas plates and bowls with our trademark Middleterranean® creations inspired by the healthy diets of the Middle East and Mediterranean. We are committed to a Chef driven menu, made from scratch, producing restaurant quality food in a fun quick service setting with American style!Taboonette Middleterranean

Taboonette Middleterranean – One of NYC’s Up and Coming “Better For You” Brands

Watch the Video

The world famous Middleterranean® Oven of Taboon® Restaurant is heating up with its latest concept
Taboonette®— a Mediterranean fast food franchise that marries flavors from the Middle East and the Mediterranean region. Aspiring restaurateurs can now run their own wood oven place and feed people authentic, flavorful, and healthy dishes made from clean ingredients, pioneered by world-famous chef Efi Naon. The culinary revolution that started with a humble, wood oven would now satisfy people who want something beyond the ordinary dinner menu.

The much anticipated Launch of a National Franchise campaign has the culinary world buzzing all the way to Middle East. Our unique creations can now reach various parts of the country and introduce diners to a soulful blend of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine. Taboonette®’s famous dishes — lamb kebab, chicken shawarma, kruveet, sweet potato falafel, haloumi salad, sabich, and more — will find its way to customers and delight their palates. More people can now experience our restaurant-quality food served in a quick and fun setting by dedicated and merry staff.

Markets will be selling fast. After all, a lot of aspiring restaurateurs would want to take advantage of this great opportunity. With a famous name and a strong place in the market, Taboonette® enjoys a healthy customer base and an established business model. And with one-of-a-kind, delicious, authentic food, franchisees would have customers streaming through their doors.New York City restaurant Taboon is now franchising its fast casual concept — Taboonette Middleterranean Kitchen — in select markets across the United States, according to a press release.

Taboonette’s menu is inspired and created by Taboon’s award-winning Executive Chef Efi Naon, an Israeli native and classically trained chef. Naon has focused his recent efforts towards bringing the slow-cooked, healthy cuisine of Taboon to the quick-service restaurant community, saidvTaboonette President Danny Hodak.

“Because the Taboonette reputation is already built, franchisees will be investing in an established concept and brand, rather than a trendy gimmick,” Hodak said in the release. “We created Middleterranean fusion cuisine 15 years ago and the demand has consistently grown. We’ve been working hard at Taboonette to perfect Middleterranean at the quick-service level and it is a win-win for consumers and franchisees alike.”

Taboonette offers the ability for prospective franchisees to take advantage of the high growth rate in the restaurant franchise space. A Taboonette franchise provides entrepreneurs with a fully developed and documented business model, comprehensive training programs and continued support and guidance from pioneers in the Middleterranean cuisine space.

The total investment necessary to begin operation of a Taboonette franchised business ranges from $350,500 to $637,400, which includes a franchise fee of $30,000 that must be paid to the franchisor and/or its affiliate when you sign the Franchise Agreement.

Taboonette’s ambitious expansion plans include opening as many as 50 franchise locations by 2021, across the country.

Franchisees Need To Have An Exit Strategy

Identify a qualified advisor who can aid in developing a formal exit plan. An advisor could be an experienced attorney, financial advisor or accountant, who can assist with the various implications and tax issues regarding the sale or transfer of ownership. Surveys of small business owners indicate that their CPA is considered the most trusted advisor.
Establish the primary exit goal, for example, transitioning to a family member, sale to a third party, the franchisor or private equity group.

Franchisees Need To Have An Exit Strategy

Ed Teixeira – Contributor
Relying on 35 years of franchise industry knowledge

Franchisees seek to sell their business for a variety of reasons including burnout, personal issues, retirement or new opportunities. Whatever, the reason, every franchise ought to have an existing exit plan whether the execution of the plan takes place or not.

The Exit Planning Institute reports that: “Roughly six million privately held companies are operating in the United States, with approximately $30 trillion in sales. An owner who is “ready” with an attractive business greatly increases the odds that the business will survive a transition of hands. The question is, how ready are business owners?” Although this report doesn’t indicate whether it includes franchises, we’ll assume these statistics can apply to the franchise industry.

A survey of Long Island business owners was conducted by Dr. Richard Chan of Stony Brook University and Christopher Snider of the Exit Planning Institute. Franchisees should compare the results to their own situation as a franchise owner.

* 74% of businesses are family owned
* 63% have no board of directors or advisory board
* 50% consider ownership transition a top priority but 50% were not ready to transition their business
* 43% had no exit plan
* 17% had a written transition or exit plan
* 60% had not determined what they need to obtain from the sale of their company
* 82% had no outside resource or advisors to assist in an exit plan
* Their most trusted advisor was their CPA

Fundamentals of a Franchise Exit Strategy

Franchisees, whether they operate one or more units should have a written plan in place for either selling their business or transitioning ownership to a family member. For franchisees, this issue is particularly important since unlike independent business owners, the sale of a franchise is subject to franchisor approval, that can require equipment and location upgrades, which in the case of certain franchises can be costly. Many a franchise sales transaction was canceled because neither the seller or buyer would do remodel upgrades. In addition, there are important tax considerations that come into play because of the franchise sale. The lack of an exit plan and the related decisions that need to be made can impact the value of the franchise when it’s time to sell.

How to Begin

Identify a qualified advisor who can aid in developing a formal exit plan. An advisor could be an experienced attorney, financial advisor or accountant, who can assist with the various implications and tax issues regarding the sale or transfer of ownership. Surveys of small business owners indicate that their CPA is considered the most trusted advisor.
Establish the primary exit goal, for example, transitioning to a family member, sale to a third party, the franchisor or private equity group.
Set a range of time for selling or transitioning ownership of the business, such as two-five years or longer.
Decide whether you’ll want to stay involved in the business as an advisor, minority owner, etc. Some buyers want the seller to stay involved for a period of time while others want a clean break. It depends on the buyer.
List those items or actions that could increase the value of the business. Sometimes a few changes can make a major difference in value.
A marginally profitable business can be very difficult to sell, according to BizBuySell, only 20% of all businesses listed for sale actually sell. Finding a buyer on the open market can be a long process. Some businesses can be difficult to value, and the selling price may be much lower than expected.

Payment Terms

Seller financing has always been a mainstay of selling a business. Many buyers are reluctant to pay all cash and use most of their capital. Some buyers also feel that a business should pay for itself and are wary of a seller who wants all cash or who wants the carry-back note secured by additional collateral or personal guarantees. What sellers seem to be saying, at least as perceived by the buyer, is that they don’t have a lot of confidence in the business or in the buyer or perhaps both. However, if we look at statistics, it’s apparent that sellers receive a much higher purchase price if they accept terms.

Studies reveal that, on average, a seller who sells for all cash receives only 70% of the asking price. Sellers who are willing to accept terms receive, on average, 86% of the asking price. That difference on a business listed for $250,000, meaning that the seller who is willing to accept terms will receive about $40,000 more than the seller who is asking all cash, which is compelling reasons for a seller to accept terms.

The Buyers Expect Certain Financial Information

Who does the franchise financials? How believable are the numbers? If the franchise has a bookkeeper, will they let a buyer contact him or her? Can you get a copy of the franchise credit report? Is the franchise on good terms with the major suppliers? Three years of financial information is expected. Equipment contracts or leases or any other financial obligations of the business. They will expect to see receivables and payables and hidden obligations of the business. Be prepared to present some information regarding the performance of the franchise network.

Valuing the Selling Price of the Franchise

The easiest, and probably the most reliable method of putting a recommended selling price on a small business is what is commonly referred to as the discretionary cash flow or the discretionary earnings method. This method is based on the actual earnings of the business and is determined by the profit and loss statement. To figure out the cash flow or actual earnings of the business, it is necessary to make certain adjustments to the profit and loss statement. These adjustments, when added to the profit of the business, determine the “real cash flow” of the business. Add the owner’s salary, perks, family perks, and salary, business trips, company vehicles, and other discretionary expenses. This total cash flow figure is then multiplied by a number applicable to the specific franchise category. For franchises, the average multiple can range from 2 to 4 times SDE. The discretionary earnings method is appropriate for small businesses and franchises many business brokers encourage to use. There are other valuation models available. The Business Brokerage Press sells a Reference Guide for Businesses and Franchises that provides numerous valuation models.

Franchisees should have an exit plan in place to sell their franchise. A formal exit plan will enable the franchise owner to maximize the value of their franchise whether the sale is planned or not.
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About the Author
Ed Teixeira
Ed Teixeira is Chief Operating Officer of Franchise Grade and was the founder and President of FranchiseKnowHow, L.L.C. a franchise consulting firm. Ed has over 35 years’ experience as a Senior Executive for franchisors in the retail, healthcare, manufacturing and software industries and was also a franchisee. Ed has consulted clients to franchise their existing business and those seeking strategic solutions to operational, marketing and franchise relations issues. He has transacted international licensing in Europe, Asia, and South America. Ed is the author of Franchising from the Inside Out and The Franchise Buyers Manual and has spoken at a number of venues including the International Franchise Expo and the Chinese Franchise Association in Shanghai, China. He has conducted seminars, written numerous articles on the subject of franchising and has been interviewed on TV and radio and has testified as an expert witness on franchising. He is a franchise valuation expert by the Business Brokerage Press. Ed can be contacted at [email protected]

With A Focus On Healthy, High Quality Menus, Fast Casual Franchised Restaurants Sprint In A New Direction

As enticing as these food offerings may be to our palate Consumers may find themselves paying almost double what they would at a traditional fast food location. Locally sourced, organic and sustainable food suppliers still see this segment as small compared to conventionally processed ingredients, so access and availability remain a challenge.


Photo by Jade Wulfraat on Unsplash

Quick With A Focus On Healthy, High Quality Menus, Fast Casual Franchised Restaurants Sprint In A New Direction
By Gary Occhiogrosso

As recently as 15 years ago the idea that you could grab a nutritious, healthy and still tasty meal from a drive-thru or fast food restaurant was unheard of. It wasn’t until the post-Y2K era that fast food customers started to become aware with what they ate. As the Millennial generation started spending money on food outside the home the industry has been “forced” to move toward healthier, high-quality menu alternatives. Once begun this movement toward fresher, greener menus have continued to accelerate at an ever increased pace.

Does Better for You equal Better for Business

Consumer attitudes regarding the link between diet and health have shifted. Data shows that Millennials and aging baby boomers are taking a more proactive approach to healthy eating. Many have adjusted their dietary choices to promote better health. The demographic with higher levels of education and more disposable income is pushing this trend forward. These health-conscious consumers take the time to research before they dine out. In addition, they seem more willing to pay higher prices to ensure that what goes into their bodies is nutritious.

With this new consumer focus on nutrition, sustainability and ‘clean food’ comes a revolution in the Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) industry. According to a recent article in Business Leader, 83% of Americans believe that fast food from traditional Quick Service franchises is not healthy. This has created the rise of the ‘better for you’ brands that now compete with fast food quick-service McDonald’s, Burger King, and KFC. For example, healthy quick service brands such as Dig Inn, By Chloe, and Sweetgreen are creating their own niche by specializing in organic, locally sourced meal options that contain more vegetables and fewer calories than traditional burgers and fries.

Quality comes with a Cost
As enticing as these food offerings may be to our palate Consumers may find themselves paying almost double what they would at a traditional fast food location. Locally sourced, organic and sustainable food suppliers still see this segment as small compared to conventionally processed ingredients, so access and availability remain a challenge. As a result, many healthier focused chains are developing altogether new selling propositions by positioning “value with reasons” as a way to compete with the traditional fast food chains of the industry. These “better for you” concepts post nutritional information, health benefits as well as the sourcing and methods used in their products. The emphasis is on local, clean, humanely raised and organic.

One such concept is Salad and Go. Branded as a healthy drive-thru option, Salad and Go offers large salads, smoothies, soup and breakfast with an “Always Organic” list of ingredients. In addition, the brand highlights their competitive prices. Salad and Go currently has in 10 locations in the U.S. with plans to nearly double that number by the end of 2018.

Another U.S. chain, LocoL, offers food made only from local ingredients. Founders & Chefs Roy Choi and Daniel Patterson claim “We at LocoL want to live in a world where eating healthy doesn’t take a lot of money or time.”

New quick service food concepts like these are branding their menu items as healthy, high quality alternatives to the sugar, fat, and salt-heavy meals provided by traditional fast food franchises. Recently developed QSR concepts give consumers a choice. Whether it’s organic, farm to table, all natural, gluten free, vegan or humanely raised, the race to innovate and meet this rising consumer trend has never been more of a priority in the Quick Service Restaurant segment than it is today.

Forcing Innovation in Traditional Brands
As new brands continue to make their mark in the minds of U.S. consumers, established brands are attempting to keep up with changing demands. Fast food chains such as Taco Bell have promised to use cage-free eggs and reduce artificial ingredients, and McDonald’s has started selling antibiotic free chicken, and now cooks many of its items to order and offers more salads. It is yet to be seen if that alone will be enough to keep the long-standing leaders in the QSR industry on top.

Serving up Quality, Quickly and Consistently
These QSR pioneers are faced with the challenge of living up to the expectations of an informed, proactive consumer. These newer concepts must not only live up to the marketing message but also ensure that their operations can provide consistent, quality products in every location. Their business models must be replicable and easily managed. This may also prove to be a challenge when food is being prepared to order using fresh locally sourced ingredients instead of processed or precooked menu items. If they can accomplish these tasks, the potential for growth is unlimited.

Regardless of the challenges facing these new “better for you brands”, the move away from traditional fast food to healthier quick service food options is unstoppable. As a means to address consumer concerns, in late 2017, the FDA announced new regulations requiring large restaurant chains to add calorie counts to their menus by 2018. This, combined with health-conscious consumers, will continue to push these new QSR chains to sharpen their competitive edge by offering a wider variety of great tasting, healthier options. As I see it, the success of the “better for you” fast casual concepts will depend on their adaptability to trends, consistency in product, as well as the price point and expense management.
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About the Author:
Gary Occhiogrosso is the Founder of Franchise Growth Solutions, which is a co-operative based franchise development and sales firm. Their “Coach, Mentor & Grow Program” focuses on helping Franchisors with their franchise development, strategic planning, advertising, selling franchises and guiding franchisors in raising growth capital. Gary started his career in franchising as a franchisee of Dunkin Donuts before launching the Ranch *1 Franchise program with its founders. He is the former President of TRUFOODS, LLC a multi-brand franchisor and former COO of Desert Moon Fresh Mexican Grille. He advises several emerging and growing brands in the franchise industry. Gary was selected as “Top 25 Fast Casual Restaurant Executive in the USA” by Fast Casual Magazine and named “Top 50 CXO’s” by SmartCEO Magazine. In addition, Gary is an adjunct instructor at New York University on the topics of Restaurant Concept & Business Development as well Entrepreneurship. He has published numerous articles on the topics of Franchising, Entrepreneurship, Sales, and Marketing. He was also the host of the “Small Business & Franchise Show” broadcast over AM970 in New York City and the founder of FranchiseMoneyMaker.com

Strategies for Effective Performance Management

When establishing the goals for a position, you need to make sure your people leaders have what they need to clearly communicate and review the goals and expectations of the position to the employee. This should include job descriptions, policies, procedures, and performance program documentation.

Performance Management Avoidance

There is a plethora of reasons performance management programs are less than successful in meeting their intended outcomes. One significant factor contributing to this problem is the reluctance or hesitation of people leaders in conducting the performance review. Over time we have observed a variety of contributing variables that inhibit a people leader from engaging the employee to provide feedback.

Supervisors who:
• were never properly trained to deliver feedback
• are new and lack both the training and experience
• are unclear of what the expectations of the employee and position are
• inherently are uncomfortable with conflict
• have a personal relationship with the employee
• don’t want to upset the employee
• would rather do the work themselves compare to holding the employee accountable

As a business owner or leader, it is critical to understand these challenges of your people leaders and develop training programs, guidance documents, clear job descriptions and position goals to prepare these individuals for success. Give your people leaders the tools, resources and support to measure, manage, and improve the workforce effectively.

Five Key Factors to Effective Performance Management

Once your people leaders have been properly prepared to execute performance management in your organization, there are five key factors that lead to success for the workforce that we are going to review here.

1. Setting the Right Expectations from the Start

When establishing the goals for a position, you need to make sure your people leaders have what they need to clearly communicate and review the goals and expectations of the position to the employee. This should include job descriptions, policies, procedures, and performance program documentation.
Do not neglect other key components in this process that go well beyond paper. This includes your company culture (the actions and behavioral norms of the organization), the work environment, and the modeled behavior of the managers and leadership team.

2. Crucial Conversations

Recognize that discussions about performance are often challenging and require patience, trust, and mutual respect. Establishing a comfortable environment where honest feedback can take place and is received as a tool to support the employee’s success is easier said than done. Special attention should be given in the training and support of your people leaders to have crucial conversation with their staff to achieve success.

3. Listening as a Powerful Tool

Here is your chance to demonstrate diversity of thought and an inclusive behavior. If you do all the talking it is not a conversation, it is a lecture. Think about how you could possibly demonstrate care for the employee if you refuse to listen to their thoughts and ideas, as well as their feedback. You can be confident in knowing that you will learn something from the employee if you only take the time to listen. Empower the employee to provide you feedback, and this means teaching them how to share with you what they need from youin order to be successful in their respective roles.

4. Accountability is not Punitive

If the only time you provide an employee feedback is when they do something wrong, the entire system of performance management will be perceived as punitive. Instead, ensure your conversations are consistent and relay constructive feedback regarding when the employee if both meeting or falling short of established expectations. If you are building trust and engagement with the employee, you must be sincere in your communication about performance. Positive accountability leads to improved performance, professional development, the closure of skill gaps, and enhancement of capabilities. Even your best employee has room to develop and grow, and you should take advantage of your performance management program to support their continued success in this manner.

5. Recognizing the ROI of a Successful Performance Management Program

How does the business benefit from building and executing an effective performance management program? Of primary importance should be the validation that you as an employer are getting what you pay for. If employees are not meeting expectations, you are not getting what you pay them to do. That, alone, should motivate any employer to take performance management seriously. Other benefits for the business are increases productivity, maximizing workforce capabilities to deliver your products and services, improved trust and engagement with management, effective communication, professional development, and opportunity for succession planning. When executed well the organization is also informed as to the creation of effective training and development programs for the workforce.

Why is the Employee’s Perspective of
Performance Management is Important?

In creating a workforce in which communication is effective and mutually beneficial, resulting in trust and engagement, an employee must believe confidently that the business has their best interest at heart in achieving success.

When an employee doesn’t trust their supervisor cares about their success in the company, engagement breaks down as does communication and job performance. Employees are observing the behaviors of the management team all the time.

When they see actions not matching words, they lose faith in the leadership of the company and can become disengaged and they lose trust in those guiding the business.

If the employee is only receiving feedback when something is wrong, they will perceive the program as punitive and avoid sharing their ideas for the business. The environment will become disconnected and morale will deteriorate, leading to gossiping and lack of engagement.

Ensure your people leaders are trained effectively to engage their staff, build trust, and communicate all forms of feedback in a consistent and fair manner to establish positive relationships with the workforce.

Are you looking for Capital or Deal Flow in the franchising space??

This session will consist of a panel discussion covering how to position your franchise company for Private Equity investment and what PE firms look for in a Franchise company acquisition or strategic partnership.

Are you looking for Capital to build your Franchise Company???
– OR –
Is your Investment Firm looking for deal flow in the franchising space??

By Gary Occhiogrosso
Founder of Franchise Growth Solutions, LLC.

On Friday, June 1st, I will be moderating a panel at the IFE in NYC. It will be comprised of Franchisors and Private Equity associates. Please see below for details and please let me know if you’d like to attend the meeting. If so, contact me here or at [email protected] & I’ll send you a FREE PASS to the Expo.

10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
+/- Private Equity Investing and Franchising
Room: 1B05
Moderated by: Gary Occhiogrosso, Managing Partner, Franchise Growth Solutions
Panelists: Roger Lipton, President, Lipton Financial Services; Grant Marcks, Vice President, Head of Business Development, Atlantic Street Capital; Kirk McLaren, MBA, CTP, CPA, Georgetown University
This session will consist of a panel discussion covering how to position your franchise company for Private Equity investment and what PE firms look for in a Franchise company acquisition or strategic partnership. In addition, there will be plenty of “networking” time for both Franchisors and Private Equity attendees to meet & network. This is a great opportunity for Investors and Franchisors to meet face to face and discuss current and future opportunities.
Sponsored by Franchise Growth Solutions, LLC. www.frangrow.com

FREE PASS To the International Franchise Expo in NYC
USE PROMO CODE FGS at: https://r1.events-registration.com/IFE2018/?source=FGS
YOU ARE INVITED BY
Franchise Growth Solutions
Booth #340
USE PROMO CODE FGS

This session will consist of a panel discussion covering how to position your franchise company for Private Equity investment and what PE firms look for in a Franchise company acquisition or strategic partnership. In addition, there will be plenty of “networking” time for both Franchisors and Private Equity attendees to meet & network. This is a great opportunity for Investors and Franchisors to meet face to face and discuss current and future opportunities.

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