In re: A different kind of franchise

When you think franchise you probably think McDonald’s, but there are countless others, be it hotels, fast food, and practically anything else you can dream up.  Usually franchise setups involve strict control and compliance with the standards setup by the franchisor, ensuring that each individual franchisee holds up the quality and brand standards setout, and often requiring them to buy their products via approved suppliers or the franchiser.  Some companies like Starbucks (as i’ve commented on before) avoid franchising whenever possible (such as in airports or on college campuses etc. where they might not be able to enter otherwise) because the company does not believe that (among other reasons) franchises will hold up their strict brand image that they rely so much on (they are ‘just’ selling coffee lets remember).

So it was kinda interesting to hear on All Things Considered while driving home about a franchise setup with almost no central control, who is you ask, Great Harvest Bread Company.  In fact they really don’t make you do much of anything and encourage you to do your own thing.  All they ask is that you make their signature honey whole wheat bread, put up the logo/sign and grind your wheat daily.  So about as different as the strict controls that so many others have. Interested?  Well I was, its a cool story and I recommend listening, available online at NPR.org

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