With this year’s Mental Health Week centred around the theme of anxiety, it is becoming increasingly important for franchisors to recognise the need to protect their franchisees’ mental wellbeing – regardless of the time of year. And with society having faced a 13% rise in mental health conditions in the last decade1 with one in five SME owners now reporting negative mental health2, it is vital that prospects understand the value of franchising when it comes to maintaining and sustaining a positive outlook. Here, Ryan Armitage, mental health advocate and director of healthcare recruitment franchise, Tezlom, discusses why the franchise model helps alleviate the stress and anxiety people face when launching and running their business.
Fundamentally, the franchise industry is built on the notion of supporting one another and collaborating. We hear so often that prospects never need to worry about their franchise businesses failing, thanks to years of franchisors building brand reputations, learning from their mistakes and joining an established network as opposed to starting completely from scratch. However, regardless of what is in place for franchisees, it is a venture that requires significant energy, focus and commitment that must be protected to ensure burnout and anxiety do not damage a franchise. Protecting franchisees from anxieties and stresses remains an imperative element of a franchisor’s role, particularly before they take the all-important step into business ownership. And with economic uncertainty looming over us, mental health, financial security and providing well-rounded support are certainly areas of the industry that should continue to be addressed.
Put simply, franchisors who can appreciate the importance of mental health see a happier, more engaged and more driven franchise network. In fact, now more than ever – as work-life balance becomes more important to those seeking agency over their professional lives and relationships – the workplace is becoming a key area in which people determine their wellbeing. Research shows that for almost 70% of people, their manager has more impact on their mental health than their therapist or doctor, matching the impact of their partners3. And as we know, the franchisee-franchisor relationship is certainly a close partnership in today’s dynamic, diverse and leader-driven industry.
At Tezlom, for example, our franchisees have the benefit of knowing their investment in the company is directly benefitting their wellbeing, with Group Brand Manager and Mental Health Ambassador Kay Lou Haskins, becoming a leading light in the franchise industry.
“It’s vital that prospects understand the value of launching a business in an environment that’s not only built to help them succeed professionally, but supports and nurtures their wellbeing in the process. The franchise industry is full of incredible, driven people who, like in all fast-paced corporate spaces, can sometimes forget to put themselves first. However, thanks to brands like Tezlom and so many others out there, franchisees can be safe in the knowledge that the franchise industry is leading the way when it comes to championing mental wellbeing,” says Kay Lou.
As the franchise industry continues to witness significant growth and success, it is true that prospects today have the security of joining networks that have been built by supporting and encouraging one another. Franchisees naturally benefit from their network’s prior successes and their experienced franchisors – who often have ways of helping prospects raise and manage finances more efficiently. Meanwhile, franchisees can rest easy in the knowledge that they are stepping into roles that see collateral, processes and marketing materials already prepared, saving countless sleepless nights and stresses that are unavoidable when launching a business from scratch.
An alarming 50% of employees have experienced at least one characteristic of burnout due to greater job demands and expectations, lack of social interaction and lack of boundaries between work and home life4. And while running a franchise business requires the same amount of effort as owning a start-up, concerns over isolation and burnout are naturally addressed with the franchise industry being a collaborative and supportive environment. Franchisors that devote their own time and energy towards securing this approach, through effective recruitment and celebrating those who represent a brand, undoubtedly witness greater success across their franchise.