Finding Your Perfect Match in No Time: 2018 NextGen winner Devan Kline explains the franchisor-franchisee relationship like only a millennial could.

Author:Kline, Devan

The franchisor-franchisee relationship is the foundation of any successful business. You can have a great product, strong unit-level economics and operators, and millions of customers, but if your relationship with your franchise partners is strained, things can unravel quickly.

There are dozens of franchisors that do this exceptionally well. But what makes Burn Boot Camp stand out among our competitors isn't that we have high franchise partner satisfaction ratings. It's how we have built, and continue to maintain, that relationship. As a millennial--I was born in 1987--I have a different way of communicating and building relationships than a Gen X or Baby Boomer founder. While a majority of our franchise partners are around my age (under 35 years old), about 15 percent of our partners are 40-45 years old, and some are older than 45. It's a different dynamic to be the CEO of a franchise brand where some of our franchise partners are 20 years my senior. But it works--exceptionally well.

Here are a few tips for building relationships with franchise partners in the style of a millennial entrepreneur.


I strongly believe that energy is a resource that can be pulled from within a person. I'm able to easily maintain my natural energy levels that allow me to inspire franchise partners to discover the energy that already lives within them. Energy knows no age and it's never a matter of ability to have energy, but a matter of motivation. Show your franchise partners your passion and energy and they'll feed off it. It's infectious. In turn, that high-energy culture will filter down into your stores and to your customers. And when customers feel it, they're happier and more engaged with the brand at the local level. That translates to more traffic and sales.


Even today, I'm the guy walking into a meeting wearing Lululemon and a backwards hat. You'd think everyone else in the room would immediately lose respect for this "millennial kid," but never doubt that intelligence speaks for itself. Once you start pitching, you'll get the respect you deserve. Franchise partners want to see you as authentic, not a person pretending to be something they're not, and in some cases you are the personification of the brand you're leading or that you created. Show franchise partners the real you and they'll have a deeper connection to you and the brand.


One of the greatest feelings is to...

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