Own Your History, Transform the Present: 2017 FAN of the Year explains how franchisees make the world go 'round.

Author:Kennedy, Tamra

Earlier this year, it was my great honor to receive the Franchise Action Network's FAN of the Year Award. In between making tacos, I spent much of 2017 saying "yes" when asked to step up and represent franchising. I wrote letters, submitted articles and op-eds, gave speeches, made TV appearances, visited the White House and even testified before Congress. Why? Because when you are asked to give back to what has given you so much, you answer the call.


As an IFA Board member, I take seriously the responsibility that comes with helping make clear the mission of this world-class organization: To protect, enhance, and promote franchising. It's an honor to collaborate with industry leaders from all business segments and backgrounds, from the giants to the newcomers, and really educate about franchising.

As a franchisee, I feel qualified to ask for your commitment to get involved with IFA. Franchisees live the mission of IFA every day in our businesses. We live the franchise story every morning when we unlock the doors. But I am here to say, that may not be enough. We can do more.


As a small, multi-unit franchisee, I put 100 percent into my business; every nickel, every ounce of energy, and all of my family's hopes and dreams. All in. For years, I kept my head down, working away in our business and hoping that whatever new regulation or rule imposed on our company wouldn't set us back too far - we would cut back somewhere to make up for it. What kind of business plan is that!

Your franchise business is worth protecting against those policy makers that either don't understand what you have risked or those that would use legislation to peel away what you have earned. Advocacy is now part of my business plan--I call it Legacy Insurance.

If you shake your head in disbelief when you see or hear some new rule aimed at franchising that will make your business less successful, it's time to engage in the political conversation. IFA has the tools and the team to get you started and keep you connected with grassroots efforts to get involved within your state. Our Franchisee Forum represents the collective voice used to amplify the impact of legislation on the franchisee's business model. Let's turn up the volume together.


At any IFA event you will find direct competitors sharing a stage and offering best practices to all who will listen. Franchisees, franchisors and suppliers openly helping each other. Too cool...

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