Mother, wife and CEO of Molly Maid, Pam Bader OBE, reveals the benefits of franchising and her top tips for women looking to start their own business through franchising. Tiffany Brooking reports
“Women are wonderfully suited to franchising”
After taking a career break or time out for children, women can often lose their self-confidence and belief in what they are good at, which makes returning to the workplace a daunting prospect.
For some, returning to full-time employment just isn’t an option. With a growing family and so few employers willing to provide flexible working, how are women suppose to raise a family and bring home the bacon? The answer lies in franchising.
By joining a franchised business – where franchise owners receive all the tools, training and support needed to run their franchise successfully – women can start their own business with confidence and find a career that provides the ideal work/life balance.
Since helping to set up the master franchise for Molly Maid with her partner in 1984, Pam Bader OBE has achieved great success in the franchise industry, from developing the domestic cleaning franchise into an established household name to being the first woman elected as Chairman of the British Franchise Association (bfa).
With over 25 years of industry experience, Pam has recognised that franchising is an ideal way for women to enter into business.
"It gives women the opportunity to build a career, run a household and look after their family on their own terms – they are in charge of their own financial destiny and the sky's the limit," says Pam. "There are a lot of women who are on their own and find the challenge of starting a new business very daunting but very often these women are great at franchising because they receive all the training and support they need to be successful.
"Women are wonderfully suited to franchising, they listen and they learn very quickly. Of course Molly Maid is a very good fit for both men and women but generally women seem to have the ability to relate to both customers and staff and follow our proven business systems."
Whether you are a young mother looking for a part-time business or a mature woman wanting to secure your retirement fund, Pam insists that age and experience is no barrier when starting a franchised business.
"One of our most successful female franchise owners joined us at 60 and sold her successful business at 65," she reveals. "If you have raised children or run a household you have the skills to run a business."
Pam's Top Tips For Finding Your Ideal Franchise Opportunity
1. Look for something you enjoy
It is vital to pick a franchise that suits you. One where you are comfortable with the concept and what it demands of you. Most women love looking at homes. One of the most interesting parts of the Molly Maid business is visiting customers in their homes to discuss their needs and ensuring that you do a quality job by paying attention to detail, which is what most women do when they are looking after their own home.
2. Look for a franchise that's been established in the UK for a long time
This is important because the longer they have been operating, the more experience they have gained and the more expert guidance you will receive. It's scary when you go into business and you can feel all alone, but Molly Maid holds your hand from the first introduction and continues for as long as you are a Molly Maid franchise owner.
3. Ask yourself if you have heard of the brand
Successful franchises offer, among other things, brand name recognition and proven systems for marketing, human resource management and operations. It doesn't matter what industry you are considering, you want to know that the franchisor is providing you with these key benefits.
4. Contact the bfa
This is the voluntary regulatory body for franchising in the UK and most of the big name franchisors belong to it. The bfa publishes a guide to franchising that will answer many of your questions and give you questions to ask franchisors.