The Maids Franchise Startup Failure
Last Update 6-4-15
As you read this material, surely you must think "they just didn't know what they were doing. After experiencing Discovery Day and hearing about the support available, it is difficult to understand how anyone could fail. Perhaps the best way to evaluate qualifications of the owners is to look at what happened at our successful company after we returned and started giving it attention. The first year, income before income tax increased by 40%. In my naive manner of evaluating situations, I think that change is indicative of our qualifications. If we were stumbling around in a world of incompetency, it is doubtful that Friendly would have succeeded in the first place. We broke even after 6 months which was faster than any previous franchise owners in the history of Friendly. Yes, we do know what we are doing in starting up and operating a company with a good model.
Since you are considering buying a The Maids franchise there is a good chance that you spent your professional life working for a major corporation, you are educated and you "know" that if anyone can be successful in this business it is you. Be careful with the assumptions. If you have digested the site contents and if you shared your knowledge of the information with others maybe you have been convinced that we are an anomaly. We are just a couple of people who didn't know what they were doing and wouldn't follow the system outlined by The Maids. That is simply untrue in both cases. We did follow the guidelines with the two exceptions discussed earlier and still failed. We spent $20,000 on an office build out to provide a comfortable place to work 12 hours per day 5 days per week rather than using warehouse space. We wanted employees to be able to tell friends that they worked for The Maids with pride and to be able to proudly show them their work environment. You can go on a tour by clicking on the link to start the video which we made. That involved a one time cost and is a small fragment of the half million dollars lost. The second violation involved spending more than recommended on marketing during the early months in an attempt to 'jump start" the business. When starting a new business which is not known in your area this made good sense to us. Lets be very generous and say that we "wasted" $60,000 in this area. We still have over $420,000 spent over a period of 18 months on a blatant failure.
Marlene's experience in the business world involved working in the public school system during the late 90s. She received her degree in Management Information Systems during 2006. That same year we opened Friendly Computers located in Webster. During the startup of that franchise, which broke even in 6 months and has remained number one in that franchise system since 2007, Marlene developed Marketing skills that I feel are unsurpassed. She learned how to systematically test Marketing approaches carefully tracking results to identify the most effective approaches. Through a combination of what is considered traditional Marketing approaches and becoming very involved in networking organizations in the area Marlene pushed the business to perform at an admiral level and has kept it there for the past 8 years.
Ron's degree is in Chemical Engineering and in the corporate world he worked in the refining industry retiring from Phillips Petroleum as Manager of Engineering during 2002. During his career he managed many significant projects including a $500 million expansion to a refinery. Budget for his organization exceeded $23 million per year when he retired.
Now I think you must agree that qualifications and experience indicated surpasses what one would think "typical" of people purchasing franchises. When two people with excellent qualifications and franchise experience spend almost half a million dollars trying to start a franchise over an 18 month period and fail miserably, something is wrong.
Summary of experience
The Saga - Detailed Account Of Franchise Startup Failure
Is Molly Maids Equivalent To The Maids?
Demands of Managing Operation
Hourly Manpower Problems
Professional Manpower Difficulties - Field Managers
Franchises Do Not Fail - They Just "Go Away"
Need Money - Find An Angel
Selling The Business
Owner QualificationsSuccess Motivation