Franchise Success Is All about Phenomenal Partnerships


Robert Chase has just joined the hot digital franchise OrderUp as one of their first multi-unit franchise owners.  Robert’s ability to develop large territories has been proven over and over again, first with ChemDry Carpet Cleaning and then with Money Mailer. There is no doubt in my mind that now he will change the future of the restaurants in Phoenix with his OrderUp franchise.

Chris Jeffery, CEO and Founder of OrderUp, comments: “As you know, we tend to focus on single unit franchises, but when Robert and I met, I knew right away that together we would make a huge impact in helping consumers connect with restaurants in the Phoenix market. Robert’s experience and track record are impeccable and we are excited to have him on our team.” Robert is also excited about joining the OrderUp team as he shares, “Chris is incredibly smart in growing his concept through local vested partners. He had many options and I am glad he chose the franchise route. OrderUp has brilliant technology and we, the franchisees, provide the customer relationships at the local level. I can’t wait to shake things up in the Phoenix restaurant scene.” And, thus the beginnings of another franchise phenomenal partnership are forged.

As I hear Robert talk, I delight in learning about the makeup of this extremely successful multi-unit owner and how he defines franchise success from a franchisee point of view. “Franchise success can only exist when the partnership works. For that to happen, franchisees must take advantage of what the franchisor has created and franchisors must recognize and capitalize from the talent and experience that franchisees bring into the partnership. When mutual respect is there, the relationship can flourish. That’s really what franchising is all about, phenomenal relationships,” Robert explains.

I have often wondered why multi-unit and regional developer franchisees choose to invest in a franchise instead of developing their own business ideas. They usually are well funded and have diverse backgrounds and experience as well as a strong drive, so why choose franchising? Over the years I had always wanted to ask this question directly instead of just making assumptions based on my personal dealings and observations, but I never had until now. “I don’t want to reinvent the wheel; I just want to focus on replicating and expanding success. I can achieve my objectives faster this way. I make use of my strengths and my creativity and leave the drudgery to the franchisor. I contribute to the system but don’t have to figure everything out,” said Robert and validated my thoughts with his answer.

Robert always knew he wanted to run his own business and he has never been afraid of hard work. This combination of drive and the intrinsic need to be productive is required for the success of franchisees. Robert attributes his motivation for success to having to fend for himself from an early age. Losing his mother at the age of 10, Robert felt the need to learn how to face life and create his future on his own. Even when his adoptive family was loving and caring, the many difficult times Robert faced molded his will and character as well as his desire to succeed in life and to make the world a safer place.

I was curious to hear what challenges Robert has faced as a franchisee. “Without a doubt my greatest challenge has been riding the cycles of the franchisor. All franchise companies experience growing pains; they have to adapt to changes in the economic landscape and respond to the demands imposed by today’s technological advances. Some companies go through change of ownership; and, even when this can be a positive development, these drastic changes always affect everyone in the company. As a franchisee, we don’t have much control of these big decisions, so learning to ride these waves gracefully can be a challenge,” Robert explains.

Robert’s longevity with Money Mailer bears witness to how his strengths support him during these times. “I am a very optimistic person by nature, especially during difficult times. I believe that we all have the opportunity to grow in the face of adversity; it is a choice available to all of us. I’d rather find ways to grow instead of complaining or becoming a victim of what’s happening. Nothing is ever going to be perfectly smooth, but if we are kind, patient, give people the benefit of the doubt, and communicate through the tough times, then we can learn and adjust, and even benefit from every challenge we face,” Robert shares.

To my question about what it takes to replicate franchise success, Robert answers: “Obviously, you first have to have a valid concept that addresses customers’ demands in the present and in the future. It is better if the products or services the franchisor offers anticipate and bring answers to forthcoming economic changes; OrderUp is a perfect example of this type of innovative concept. The next element is the franchisors’ ability to attract the right people; and, last but not least, is their vigilance in protecting the brand and making certain that negative or underperforming franchisees are not part of the network. That is, the franchisor must make the tough decision of letting these franchisees go and replace them with more productive ones.”

Robert has a unique perspective when offering advice to those people considering franchising their businesses:

  • Make sure you are fair;
  • Communicate often and truthfully;
  • Be sincere in all of your dealings with your franchisees;
  • Appreciate what your franchisees bring to the table; and,
  • Remember that in order to create phenomenal partnerships, you must take care of your partners.