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This book contains some of the best advice I have come across. It is very down to earth, has a simple style - but that's Dave's way! As straightforward as the writing, the homespun wisdom and advice is not trendy, it is the type that will hold true in 50 years or 50 years in the past. However, it is NOT common knowledge and I learned many valuable lessons.
Read it if you are a CEO or a kitchen manager in a fast food restaraunt - either way you will have more insight into life in general.
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Some clues from the book:
1) As a franchisee, you buy "the right to use the franchisor's expertise, brand name, experience, methods, and support." (pg. 14).
2) Although you get a proven system, the business is yours.
It is work and it is not for everyone. Successful franchisees must be very good operators who stick to the rules.
3) Franchisors vary. Since you will be paying a royalty going forward, make sure you do the research and know what you are getting for your money. A contract can be a life preserver and a trap.
4) The evaluation, preparation, funding, and negotiation for the franchise is paramount. This book gives detailed lists, and questions to ask before you sign on that contract.
5) Top two reasons franchises fail: 1) not enough money going into the investment 2) absentee owners
6) Factors in assessing your location: population density, neighboring stores (cross promotion), anchor tenants, traffic patterns, speed of traffic, seasonal factors, day / night, competition, security, access to employees, size of property, zoning, landscaping, parking, landlord reputation, visibility, signs, environmental concerns, title, buy vs. lease, hidden costs.
7) Royalties vary according to franchisors. Wendy's is 4%
8) In the end, franchising is a relationship business with franchisor, customers, other franchisees, suppliers, attorneys, bankers, and family.
9) When selling the franchise to others, the franchisor often has the "right of first refusal" which means they can purchase it on the same terms and conditions as the offer you received from a prospective buyer. Check this clause prior to signing.
10) Use the International Franchise Association's webpage:
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0...Sept 2002- I still use this book monthly after a year and a half. Can't say enough good about it or how much it has helped me get to know where I live.
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The book itself is a running commentary on the show, it's stars, the writers, and the various ways the show aired. The photos are perhaps the best feature (who can forget Carl's Cuts with the pig-men) or the fact that Rick Moranis does Woody Allen better than Woody. Dave and Rick really do Bob Hope and Woody Allen so well it is scary. The book runs in mostly chronological order, with input from the starts all along the way. However, some of the commentary is WAY behind the scenes, perhaps a bit too far back for the average fan.
Dave Thomas, the author, does an excellent job of capturing the egos, the infighting, and the creative styles of the shows writers and performers. People often forget just how much talent came out of this ensemble: John Candy, Martin Short, Eugene Levy, Dave Thomas, Rick Moranis, Catherine O'Hara; all have had major roles in TV and movie comedy since their stint on SCTV.
The best features of this book: The photos and the quizzes at the end of each chapter. The worst feature: too much information on the writers and producers behind the scenes and not enough info on what went in front of the cameras.
Overall, I recommend highly as a great look at the best comedy shows ever made.