Before you invest, whether it is in a franchise, multi-level marketing program or other business opportunity, there are many things you should consider.
The following is a guide to some of the questions you should ask yourself. Go over these questions carefully to help make your decision.
- How much money do you have to invest?
- How much money can you afford to lose?
- Will you operate alone or will you have partners?
- Will you need financing? How will you obtain it?
- Do you have savings or income to live on while you start your new business?
Your Knowledge and Skills
- Are special skills or education required?
- Do you posses these skills or can you easily get them?
- What specialized knowledge or talents do you bring to the business?
- Do you have the necessary skills to manage a business?
- Do you require a specific level of income?
- Is this a new field of interest?
- Do you like sales or performing a service?
- How many hours are you willing to spend on your business?
- Do you want the day to day management of the business or are you going to hire a manager?
- Will this be your primary source of income or a supplement to your present income?
- Is this something that you will enjoy doing for the next 20 years?
- Are you interested in staying small or do you want to grow large?
Making Your Selection
Investing in a business opportunity is like any other investment, there are risks. As you narrow down your possibilities, carefully consider these factors.
- What is the background of the promoter?
- What is the level of support you will receive?
- Have you talked to other owners?
- Is there a demand for the product or service?
- Is it seasonal?
- Is it a fad?
- Is the product or service a one time shot, or will it generate repeat business?
- Even though it may be the greatest thing in Florida, will it work in Washington?
- Is there competition, not only in your immediate area, but nationally?
- Are there other companies offering the same products or services?
- Will you be competing with well-established businesses with name recognition?
- What will set you apart from them?
Your Ability to Operate a Business
- Will you be able to operate if the promoter or parent company goes out of business?
- Will you be able to purchase supplies?
- Can you run your business alone without extra personnel?
Name Recognition (Franchises or Multi-level Marketing)
The main reason for purchasing a franchise or multi-level marketing program is the right to use the company's name. The more successful the franchisor or multi-level program, the more the name will be recognized.
- How widely recognized is the name?
- Is the name and/or logo a registered trademark?
- How long has the parent company been in business?
- What is the company's reputation for services, products?
- Are there any complaints on file against the company with the Better Business Bureau or a local consumer protection agency?
- Are there any complaints on file with the Washington Department of Financial Institutions?
Training and Support Services
- Does the company offer training or ongoing support services?
- How does the training compare with other similar training?
- Will you be competing with others with more training?
- What are the backgrounds of the current franchises or business opportunity owners?
- Do they have prior technical or special training that is enabling them to be successful?