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by Jerry Wilkerson
  • Nearly 90 percent of franchisors consider communication/people skills as the major reason they hire an individual. During your phone or in person interview don’t just talk about duties and responsibilities you have undertaken, talk about accomplishments, and be specific. How did you save money, earned revenue for the company or handled difficult situations?
  • The majority of jobs are filled through networking. Keep you communications system up and operating, and be sure to maintain contact with your search partner. Keep talking with the headhunter that presented your candidacy to the franchisor and established the interview. Keep communications open with the company.
  • About 80 percent of franchise hiring managers prefers chronological resumes with dates accurately stated along with years and months. (Note: not just years.) Also, be certain to have valid reasons for leaving a company ready to articulate. You will be asked these questions.
  • Don’t leave jobs off your resume. If you cheat on your resume, you cheat at other responsibilities. And do not claim to have a college degree if that is not the case. This information and data will be verified today with the Internet.
  • Franchisors ask around the office what others think of you when you visited for the interview. This helps with the hiring decision. Remember, everyone you meet could be an important ingredient in the hiring process. Immediately send thank notes to each person you interviewed with at the meeting. A strong candidate will follow-up the next week with a few key point of research on the industry, marketplace, and a comparative analysis of competition. Give them a reason to remember you.
  • Expect two, maybe three in-person interviews before a hire accomplished. Have your professional references ready with up to date phone numbers. Be sure to let your references know they may be called.
  • If you can be the first person interviewed for the opportunity, it is likely the franchisor will use you as a benchmark for those candidates that follow. Listen carefully to what the interviewer says. Ask them questions early in the interview to fully understand what they want to accomplish with this hire.
  • The top three qualities sought out by franchisors when hiring are honesty, enthusiasm and verbal skills.
  • Research the company, industry, competition carefully and extensively. Draft a chart showing the brands position in the marketplace and competing systems. Show how you can make a positive impact on growth and development. Leave your research with the interviewer.
  • Describe yourself at the conclusion of your interview by using these words: flexibility, detail-oriented, creative, teamwork and self-motivated. Describe your skills by giving examples for the qualities.
  • The Eleventh Commandment: Thou shall ask for the order! If you liked what you learned during the interview opportunity, let the hiring people know this. Make them believe you want to work with them, that you are excited about this job, the company, and industry. Tell them that you think they have an outstanding system, and you can make it even stronger. Ask for the order!
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Jerry Wilkerson is a former president and executive director of the International Franchise Association (IFA), in Washington, D.C., and founder of Franchise Recruiters Ltd.®, an international franchise talent acquisition corporation with offices in Toronto and Chicago. He recently marked his 32nd year in franchising.


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