More of us are looking to make a career change than ever before. With so many industries closing down and all of us thinking more about whether our current job is the right one for us, you’re far from on your own if you’re wondering what’s next. But have you ever thought about making a career change with a chimney sweep franchise? If you haven’t, here’s why you should.
According to some estimates, around half of all workers in the UK are looking at changing their career [Aviva]. While some may be looking for greater flexibility in terms of how and where they work, other people are simply looking for improved income, revenue and the freedom to be your own boss. Whatever you’re looking for, you’re sure to find something to love about running your own franchise business.
But, with so many different franchising opportunities available to you, where should you best put your skills to use?
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Why start a chimney sweep franchise?
Never thought about starting a chimney sweep franchise before? Did you know that this is actually an essential service? Forget about inspecting bland and ancient flues, chimney sweeps are today specialist franchisees whose skills can be applied across a wide range of different industries.
Special expertise in health and safety, a good knowledge of what can constitute a potential fire hazard, and a generalist mindset are all necessary for working in this sector. If this sounds like you, assess to what extent you could see yourself doing some of the following things:
- Inspecting chimneys and flues
- Advising customers about chimney/flue safety
- Protecting the area surrounding the chimney/flue
- Using specialist brushes on extending rods to clean the chimney/flue
- Using industry-leading equipment to carry out maintenance
Still sounds good? You might be the perfect chimney sweep franchisee. If so, here’s how you can make a career change with an exciting franchise.
How to make a career change with a chimney sweep franchise
1. Make sure you’re a good fit
It goes without saying you need to make sure that you’re a good fit for this industry, but it’s worth looking at the bigger picture for what a chimney sweeper’s life looks like. Consider the fact that you will be working outside most of the time, or that you will be customer-facing on a regular basis. If neither of these things initially stands out to you as a great fit, this might not be for you.
To help you really assess the ins and outs of chimney sweeping, here is a rough outline of some of the traits and skills that will serve you well:
- Encyclopedic knowledge of health and safety best practices
- A basic understanding of chimney construction
- Comfortable working with customers
- Capable of managing and leading a team
- A strong and concise communicator
2. Start researching
With a broader understanding of the chimney sweeping industry, you will now be in a position to start researching what kinds of franchises could be the right fit for you. The franchisee-franchisor relationship should always be reciprocal, so first ask yourself what you want from a franchisor:
- Do you want to manage a single or multi-unit franchise?
- How much training and support will you need?
- How much experience in chimney sweeping do you currently have?
- Will you need dedicated career development?
- What kind of budget do you have for starting a franchise?
- Do you have working capital to operate for an initial period?
With answers to these questions and some of your own, you should be able to fairly quickly narrow down your potential franchising options. Make sure that you also have some constructive preliminary discussions with your franchisor to make sure that you’re both happy with what your future business will look like.
3. Due diligence
These days more than ever, doing your due diligence is vitally important. As with lots of other industries, analysts helping individuals and businesses to carry out due diligence have also been working from home. And, while this doesn’t necessarily mean there will be mistakes, not all documents were immediately available online, making it possible certain information may have been missed.
Due diligence allows potential franchisees to go into their new business with a clear mind on the financial situation of the franchise. Where some documents might have fallen through the cracks, be doubly sure to have all the relevant information you need.
Keep in mind that during the lockdown period, it is likely that everyone in the team is working from home. Therefore ensure that everyone has access to their specific documents.
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4. Get your business plan right
Business plans are important documents that help all relevant parties understand the future direction of your chimney sweep franchise. You’ll need to be comprehensive when covering your financial details, plans for recruitment, your future inventory, and various other projections and plans when it comes to growing your business in the future.
Business plans aren’t unchangeable, but they should always be roughly accurate to the trajectory of your chimney sweeping business.
Start your own chimney sweep franchise today
Making a career change can always seem daunting at first, but with the support of a franchisor and franchisee network helping you through, running your own business can be a reality for you.
If this isn’t right for you though, consult the UK franchise directory for a full list of other franchising opportunities you could choose to go for.
Elliott Fudge, Point Franchise ©