Simply Business met with several British entrepreneurs at the Business Startup Show in London's ExCeL centre. We've asked business experts about their startup tips to guide new entrepreneurs through the process of starting or growing their business. In this interview, John Culliney of The Entrepreneur's Source emphasizes the importance of a solid business model built upon specific goals, and the use of a coach to provide advice and guidance.
Simply Business: Could you introduce yourself and your company please?
John Culliney: My name is John Culliney. I’m with The Entrepreneur’s Source. Basically what we do is coach people to get into business. Specifically, we look at franchise business, which is ideal for people that have never been in business before, because it gives them helpful guidelines and parameters.
Simply Business: If someone was starting out and looking to get into franchising business specifically, what kind of top tips would you give them?
John Culliney: Well, there’s a host of things. First of all, I would encourage people to start with themselves and look at their strengths and weaknesses. By way of weaknesses, I mean that they need to have an understanding of what their weaknesses are before they go into business. Also, I would ask them to look at: what are their goals? What are they trying to achieve by getting into a business? What’s important for them? So, once they have that, then as they look at a business model—specifically franchising—they’ve got to make sure that their franchise model ticks those boxes. That’s the first thing. Secondly, I think it’s really important to have a good business plan, to adhere to that plan, and to monitor that plan on a weekly, monthly, quarterly basis. Next, I believe that they need to be funded properly and ensure that they don’t run out of cash, because then they jeopardize their initial investment. And lastly, I would say to work with a coach… somebody who will offer you advice and guidance, and somebody that will hold you accountable to meet your goals and your targets.
Simply Business: What sort of places can people go to get advice about franchises?
John Culliney: That’s a good question. Obviously, the British Franchise Association is one option, but I would also work with brokers, such as The Entrepreneur’s Source. Also, contact the franchise directly themselves, the master franchise owners, or the people that set up the original franchise. But, the challenge you have is that there is so much information out there, and that’s where a coach comes in. A coach will help you fine tune exactly what you’re looking for, and point you in the direction of things that suit you best.
Simply Business: Thank you.