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  • Nick Sutherland

📒 Building Franchise Systems, Processes, and Playbooks For Scale


A lot of us share a similar desire to scale our franchise enterprise. To grow our revenues, open more locations, find repeatable success we've seen from a prior location. Yet, repeatable success doesn't often come without a repeatable process. And without standard operating procedures and a sound playbook as the first step, you're often left starting your day differently than you did others. As franchise owners, what's typically attracted us to the business model are the resources, support, and processes already in place to achieve great results without building from the ground up, or starting a new concept/idea from scratch. Yet, even with the resources and support from the franchisor, it's still on us to run the day to day operations, and find the processes that work for our business, employees, and customers, and then make those repeatable.


So what does a simple playbook for building systems and processes to scale look like?
  1. First, are you ready for this? Is there enough maturity and consistency in your business to do it, document it, and delegate it?

  2. What's the "why" for your business? 🤷‍♂️. Are you in need of an SOP because of a challenge that needs turning around? Is it turnover, bad reviews, etc? Or is it because you want to expand, open new locations, or grow your business and need to put the building blocks in place in order to do so? Whatever the case, being able to uncover the why, document it, and most importantly, share it with your team is something to solidify before taking the next step.

  3. Brainstorm and document all of the responsibilities, and involve your team so you're capturing all of the important tasks, events, and actions everyone is taking on a consistent basis.

  4. Are you and your team heavy on email? Look at your sent items to see what typically comes up.

  5. Do you use any sort of project management or task management in place? What are the key items or consistencies you see on a day-to-day or week-to-week basis? Take the time to understand what's happening now, and document that. Who typically does it? How often do they do it? How long does it take? Not only is this a good exercise for you to better understand what's happening to operate your business, but in doing so, you'll be able to more appropriate delegate roles and responsibilities.


Once you have some clarity into the above, every process should then have the following:
  1. A simple name (something that everyone knows what it means)

  2. An owner (who's responsible for this process?)

  3. Tools (apps, software, etc). What does it require to get this done?

  4. Frequency. How often is this done, or needs to be done?

  5. A measurement. Is there a KPI associated to this that's important?

  6. Context. Why does this matter for the business?

  7. And lastly - the steps.. Here are the steps to get this done (documented in an easily digestible format).


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