What happens on a Discovery Day?
Discovery Days are opportunities for franchisors and potential franchisees to meet, and have a “show and tell.” The day-long event the franchisors are often seen explaining to franchisees what they can expect in buying their franchise. It is certainly a sales event but that should not deter you from your goal.
If you’re ready to buy a franchise, then attending a discovery Day should be on your topmost priority. And meeting franchisors is just one of the tasks you may have to do.
Helps you decide better
Some franchisors call the days “Decision Days” as that’s the day the potential franchisees can look, hear and decide if he wants to take up a franchise or not. Consequently, the franchisor can decide if he wants to accept the franchisee or not. This works for both the franchisor and franchisee.
Discovery Days are days filled with information on hands-on experience, operation processes, brand vision, available franchise locations, etc. These are days filled with interactions, discussions, face-to-face meetings and hopes of meeting the right franchise/franchisee.
How do I get invited?
If you are seriously considering buying a franchise, go to a Discovery Day. Find out which companies are organizing Discovery Days and express interest to attend. If the Discovery Day is far away from your hometown, make enquiries beforehand and get in touch with the Sales Representatives and let them know your intent.
Attending a Discovery Day shows that you are serious about your intention and that you have done your homework. You should get a call a few days after you have expressed interest to attend a Discovery Day. However, you should be aware that the Sales Representative should be convinced that you’re interested in buying a franchise. These events are all about matching franchisors with franchisees, so you have to make the cut, not only in terms of desire but also financially and operationally.
You may be required to fill an application that asks you about your financial status. Some franchisors also check to see if you have a criminal record or have violated laws in your country of domicile.
What’s in the program?
The franchise company’s corporate staff will initiate you into the vision of the brand and how and why they are seeking franchisees. Generally, the founders and owners of the brand are also part of the program but this is not always the case.
Existing franchisees are sometimes part of the program. They are asked to speak of their experiences and personal stories on how they started and how they’ve come thus far. They are asked to share about their struggles, their customer interactions, their highs and lows, in fact anything that might be of significance to potential franchisees.
If you want the agenda sent to you in advance, ask the Sales Representative to send it over.
Go with a list of questions
Potential franchisees have many questions on their mind and these need to be addressed. Discovery Days are the best for answering these questions and helping the franchisees know more. One of the advantage of going to such an event is that you may hear others asking questions you didn’t think of. Interactions in a group are more stimulating than if only two franchisees asked questions.
Not only do these questions clear any doubts, they also give a fresh understanding of the matter, from the point of view of the management and customers. If you don’t want to ask questions in public, you can also ask questions in private with the management.
Discovery Days are best spent when you have done some groundwork. This will assure that you get the most out of your time and energy that you spend at the Discovery day.