From the ground up: This franchisee didn't just wing it: He learned how to run a fast-food restaurant by working there first - Opportunities - Brief Article
SOMETIMES EMPLOYEES GRUMBLE about their bosses not being able to relate to them or not understanding the hard work they do. But the cooks and the delivery and counter people at Brian Cooper's Wing Zone store in State College, Pennsylvania, can't grumble--their boss probably has more experience at their positions than they do.
Cooper, 27, started out as a part-time delivery driver at the buffalo-wing franchise's first location in Gainesville, Florida. He worked his way up, cooking, managing and eventually becoming a general manager overseeing two Wing Zone stores in the Atlanta area.
Last year, Cooper decided to buy a Wing Zone restaurant of his own. "I got tired of doing the work for someone else when I could put the money in my own pocket," he says.
He moved to State College in December and worked for the next three months to open his Wing Zone location. His knack for wearing all hats came in handy during his transition to franchisee--he was even his new store's contractor.
Cooper's restaurant gained a loyal following soon after its March opening, breaking volume records for the company in its first week. Though business slowed during the college town's summer vacation slump, Cooper is excited about football-season traffic: "We really go after sporting events-- whatever brings people to drink beer and hang around their house and eat."
Home Again...and Again BUY HOMES, FIX 'EM, SELL 'EM: HOW THESE FRANCHISEES MAKE MONEY
"WE WERE BOTH LOOKING FOR A NICHE in the home-buying business and wanted a service business that would grow and be profitable," says Jared Bernstein, 27, of the criteria that led him and cousin Alan Washer to become HomeVestors of America franchisees. Their franchise, which opened in 1999, buys, refurbishes and sells homes.
"We provide sellers an opportunity to sell their properties in as-is condition quickly," explains Washer, 37, a former installation manager. After they purchase a property, the partners subcontract all home improvement work--from repairing the foundation to hanging drapes--before selling to buyers financed by HomeVestors.
In their first year, Washer and Bernstein hoped to buy, refurbish and sell 12 homes. Instead, they did 48, earning them the HomeVestors' Rookie of the Year award. Their goal for 2001 is 60 homes.
Washer and Bernstein are confident they'll reach all the goals they've set for their company, including expanding into development and rentals. And they're not at all worried about damaging their relationship in the process--in fact, they believe their familial ties make their franchise even stronger. "It's nice that it's not all business. We can step back from the business and talk as friends, as family," Washer says. "Having so much in common correlates into a strong business partnership as well."
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Haricoloxpress, founded by Subway Development Corp. CEO Larry Feldman and partners Pasquale Banasillo and Chenzo Balsamo wants to change all that Services at the color-only salons start at $20 Franchises meanwhile, are hoping they'll see the color of money with the company's other products as well custom makeup.