Should I Become a Franchise Consultant?
Franchise consultants are special types of business management consultants who connect entrepreneurs with franchise opportunities and help franchises manage their various entities. They suggest ways a business may improve efficiencies, boost productivity, and increase profitability.
A business-related bachelor's degree program can open the door to a franchise consultant career, though relevant industry experience may also be considered during the job search.
|Degree Level||High school diploma and bachelor's degree; master's degree not required, but can be beneficial|
|Degree Field||Business or related field|
|Key Skills||Analytical, organizational, interpersonal, and communication skills; problem-solving and time-management skills; willingness to travel; operational management experience and leadership skills are often emphasized|
|Average Salary||$91,770 (for all management consultants)|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Now let's talk about the steps required to become a franchise consultant.
Step 1: Earn the Proper Degrees
First, individuals who wish to become franchise consultants must earn the proper degrees. Formal consulting degree programs are not common; however, there are a variety of bachelor's degree programs that can provide suitable training for a career in consulting. Other popular degree programs include accounting, finance, economics, business administration, and marketing. Students considering a more specialized industry may find technical coursework to be helpful, such as computer science for prospective technology consultants.
Completion of a master's degree program isn't necessarily a requirement of franchise consultant positions, but it can be advantageous for acquiring the management and operational experience that is a commonly stated requirement in consultant job postings. Business administration, communication, statistics, or information systems can prove beneficial for those seeking to establish a background with business analysis and development.
Step 2: Gain Work Experience
Next, prospective consultants should gain work experience to add credibility to their professional profiles. Franchise and franchise consulting opportunities are common in the restaurant, merchandising, retail, and marketing industries. Consultants often begin careers as entry-level analysts or researchers in specific departments, such as accounting or marketing, before advancing into a supervisory or managerial position.
Step 4: Consider Certification
Certification isn't a common requirement but can enhance education and work experience or establish a specialized skill. The International Franchise Association offers a Certified Franchise Executive (CFE) designation, while the International Business Brokers Association offers a Certified Business Intermediary designation. A number of programs also exist for general management consultants.
Step 5: Focus on Career Advancement
Franchise consultants can continue to gain experience by taking on more responsibilities, including supervising teams or overseeing complex projects. Some consultants become partners in their consulting businesses, create their own firms, or obtain senior management level positions in non-consulting organizations.
Franchise consultants help entrepreneurs find and manage franchise opportunities, have a bachelor's degree and possibly a franchise or business certification, are skilled problem-solvers and communicators, and may have experience working as researchers or entry-level analysts.