14 September 2017

What you wish you knew then - franchise owner gives advice to his younger self

Stewart Herman, of Bedshed Melville, has been a franchisee with Bedshed for almost 21 years. During this time, he’s certainly achieved a lot – however it hasn’t come without its challenges.

It’s no secret that a successful and prosperous career takes hard work and determination, something Stewart knows all too well. While reflecting on his time with Bedshed so far, we asked Stewart what franchising career advice he would give his younger self.

1. Location, location, location!

The location of your store, no matter what it is that you’re selling, is a major criterion for success. Really take the time to research different areas. What is the foot traffic like? Can you see people in the area coming into a shop to buy your products?

Once you’ve got this sorted, you can then worry about the fit-out and design. For example, Bedshed has been rolling out its new evolution store fit out, which my store has received with great success. 

2. Understanding cash flow management

Remember, when you start a franchise you become a business owner, which means you’re doing a lot more than simply selling products. Putting a robust business plan in place is critical, as is getting your ducks in a row as soon as possible with the finance management side of things. This will save you a lot of headaches further down the track.

3. Get involved in the network

While I certainly feel involved and included in the Bedshed network now – getting involved from the start is something I would recommend to new franchisees. It’s amazing what you’re able to learn and pick up from other franchisees.

At Bedshed, we have what’s called the Merchandise Advisory Council (MAC) and the Franchise Advisory Council (FAC). These are open to any franchisee who’s interested in making decisions around operational matters, customer feedback, and advertising campaigns (FAC) as well as product related decisions (MAC).

4. Don’t neglect your work/life balance

While it’s important to work hard, it’s equally important to not let go of doing the things you love. For me – I love long-distance running. Between running my franchise, and spending valuable time with my family, I now find the time to run before work.

5. Take advantage of the perks!

The great thing about franchising with Bedshed is you’re able to justifiably travel overseas to attend things like the buying trips and furniture shows.  This will assist you in running your business and keeping up to date with the major furniture and bedding trends. Not only will you bulk up your frequent flyer points, you’ll also pick up innovative products and sales tips which you might otherwise not have come across!