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There's a great article on www.Entrepreneur.com about the successes of Starbucks and Subway. One chose to franchise and one did not.

You can read the article here: Serving Up Success

I've heard of a few people trying to grow their local painting or handyman business to other cities and the question always comes up, should I franchise. This article points out the good in both.

Have any of you ever looked into growing your business to other locations?

-Nathan
 

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I know a few businesses that operate satelite offices. I know one business that has po boxes in just about every suburb then advertise as a local business, and people don't know any better unless they decide to take a trip to the office.

I've told my boss out expansion plan should include satelite offices in local shopping malls. Hire a retired sales man to sit all day playing solitare on the computer until someone comes in and then his job is to sell them into an estimate and nothing more.

I could rattle on and on but I won't.
 

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Has anyone else done or heard of a successful expansion? This seems to be one of the hardest things for a contractor to do.
 

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Another trick is to publicize your office and home address and this makes it appear like you have multiple locations.

I would never publicize my home address. Last thing I want is a customer popping in when I am having a nice dinner with my girl.
 

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This is one of the hardest tricks to pull of successfully for a business. One key ingredient to insure a greater probability of success is having deep pockets and being of the frame of mind that you are going to be pouring money into this venture much longer than you are expecting before it begins to turn a profit.

It is hard enough to start your own business where you might have the ultimate motivation of realizing that if it fails you are going to be drowning. Trying to motivate another office with people who don't have the same ultimate motivations as you do and the worst that happens to them is they go get employed somewhere else is one of the real giant hurdles to overcome. You either have to be ready to be there 24 hrs a day until things stabalize or you have to come up with a plan that puts that ultimate motivating factor into the people in the other office. Usually that involves finding someone who is just about ready to go out on his own and offer them profit sharing and a percentage of ownership of the business and have them become your partner in the other office. The success rate goes up dramatically with that type of arrangement.
 
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