So you want to be in business for yourself and join the elite forces of Restaurateurs. Good on ya! We're here for it! And fantastic timing, because the Canadian food service industry is growing. We're super stoked, and in the interest of supporting you on this journey we thought we'd give you a little guide on what you need to get started.
If you're flying solo, the business plan is all you, friend. It's the map you'll refer back to as you chart your course through preparations, launch, and daily operations. It also contains your mission statement which defines precisely what you're setting out to achieve.
A franchise like Loaded is operating off of a proven business model, so when you enter the partnership there's already a tried and tested map for you to follow. Remember it isn't yours to tweak, so make sure you agree with the company's core values!
Once you've got your business plan, it's time to start preparing for your launch. You'll have to research the market to determine the best neighborhood for your restaurant, then work out your real estate budget so you can negotiate a lease.
If you partner with a franchise you can usually expect some help in this department. For instance Loaded's team has been in the biz for over 30 years combined, so we're always happy to help our partners with location selection and rent negotiation.
A big part of your success will hinge on how well you can market your restaurant. You'll want to create a strong brand identity and put together a strategy so that your target audience notices you.
Of course if you decide to become a franchisee, you're joining an established brand with an existing audience and an existing marketing plan. Loaded has dedicated a lot of time to building brand awareness nationally, and we train franchisees how to market locally.
When you start a business from scratch you often don't receive formal training, so it's up to you to train yourself. Research books and podcasts, conduct informational interviews, whatever you can to prepare--you'll learn a lot on the job, too.
Partner with a franchise, however, and you'll receive training that is specifically tailored to your success in that business. At Loaded we believe anyone can succeed with the right attitude; our training is comprehensive and prepares you for, well, getting (and leading, managing, and operating) Loaded.
Being in business independently doesn't mean no support, it just means you may have to go searching for it a little bit. You can participate in your local community as well as larger entrepreneurial and/or restaurant communities so that you can connect with similar business people and form a support network.
With a franchise you get support from day one, both from the franchisor and from the existing community of franchisees they've built. Loaded's community of franchisees feel more like family; we're a supportive network sprawled across Canada, here to help and cheer on each others' success.
We have all the faith that you can succeed in whatever you want to build from the ground up! But if you'd like to lighten your load (and your risk) by partnering with an established brand--with an awesome customer base and a team with hearts of gold--check out Loaded's franchise opportunity!