It’s no secret that the restaurant world has faced some unprecedented challenges this year. With the emergence of Covid-19, the restaurant has felt all of the repercussions of the various stages of lockdown and quarantine and the financial recession that has resulted from all of it.
Still, for many folks who were well-imbedded in the restaurant world prior to COVID-19, and even for those newcomers who had solid business plans and aspirations that were briefly put on hold, — abandoning the dream of owning a successful restaurant business is simply not an option.
While the current state of the world presents many challenges for restaurant owners, it is also a period of time uniquely suited to benefit franchisees. There has never been a more pivotal time for franchisors to have their franchisees’ backs.
MAKING THE MOST OF IT
If you are one of the millions of Americans working in the restaurant industry who suddenly found yourself laid off, perhaps with some money in the bank or access to capital, now might be the right time for you to expand your horizons with the knowledge and experience you have already accumulated.
Perhaps you were someone who had aspirations about starting your restaurant business back in 2019. You were hopeful and ready to jump in; then COVID struck. It would be easy to feel panicked or hopeless about your prospects, but there is light at the end of the tunnel. Franchisors have been working through the current pandemic, harder than ever before, to offer support to not only their current franchisees but to new entrepreneurs looking for opportunities.
HOPE AND HELP IN THE TIME OF COVID-19
Many franchises also offer a process called “discovery days” where prospective investors can go to the franchisor’s headquarters and talk to the executives about the brand. Due to the pandemic, many franchisors are offering the opportunity to meet virtually so you can ask questions and interact with a company’s valued department leaders to gather the information you need.
Wayback Burgers, for instance, has successfully shifted to hosting virtual discovery days for interested franchise owners. Meeting over video conference will never compare to shaking hands with corporate leadership face-to-face, but we are proud of our ability and willingness to adapt during this unprecedented time.
A recent survey from franchise software firm FranConnect (via Restaurant Business) determined that almost two-thirds of franchisors have continued to award franchises throughout the pandemic. Full-service and small-scale concepts may not fare as well if they are unable to adapt to pandemic dining restrictions, but this strange, new reality actually makes a lot of sense for the franchising world. In fact, franchises in the better-burger sector, such as Smashburger, Mooyah, and Wayback Burgers were founded just before the last major recession (2007) and started selling franchises in the midst of the crisis.
We believe that if we can continue to thrive and grow during a pandemic, we will do everything within our power to make it happen. For me, the adaptability shown by our franchisees has been an inspiring point of pride. They have put in the work and evolved their practices to continue growing their businesses, keep people employed, and keep families fed so everyone is healthy, happy, and hopeful.
If you are interested in learning about how to join the Wayback Burgers family, visit us.