Sport Clips' Rigorous Selection Process Ensures a Good Fit with Franchise Candidates

In order for a new franchise location to become successful, the fit has to be perfect for both the franchisor and the franchisee. This is the philosophy that has guided Sport Clips for years, and while it’s led to many quality candidates being turned down, even in the late stages of the recruitment process, it can be hard to argue with the results it has produced.

This philosophy is strongly espoused by Sport Clips’ Director of Franchise Development, Jerry Eulentrop. When speaking to a new candidate for the first time, he tries to deliver the message that he hopes that they’ll find a good fit with Sport Clips, but ultimately the answer to that question is one they’ll have to find for themselves. He says, “My hope is they better understand the value proposition of any offering, not just Sport Clips. Maybe there is something else that is a better fit for them. To decide that for themselves, they need all the relevant information. I don’t want to see them struggle in a model that doesn’t fit their financial and lifestyle goals. That isn’t what is right for them and that isn’t what is right for the brand.”

Indeed, the ideal candidate for a Sport Clips franchisee is someone who is dedicated and willing to work hard, but is willing to do so on the terms of a business model that has shown consistent success when it has been properly executed. “It’s about finding out if the brand and the candidate are a mutual fit and that is only possible if they validate everything on their own, independent of what I tell them,” Eulentrop says. “Trust but verify. Candidates should look for consistency across the board, from operations to owners to the company’s leadership.”

Who Is an Ideal Candidate?

Mr. Eulentrop says he likes to take a tour guide approach when speaking with new potential franchisee candidates. Rather than trying to give them the hard sell on a model that may or may not fit what they want out of an investment program, he simply wants to arm them with the information and let them figure out whether they’re the right fit for themselves. Those who are will complete the rigorous and thorough selection process and be granted the right to a new store.

But what makes an ideal candidate? The Sport Clips model isn’t made for just anyone with some capital that they’d like to invest with the hopes of being able to pull a living out of it. The Sport Clips model takes dedication and patience to pursue properly—candidates who have rigid timelines and hardline goals for what they expect and when are most likely not going to succeed in it. Eulentrop says the ideal candidate needs to “Define their goals, both midterm and long term, and understand what getting there looks like. Having a clear picture of their responsibility in regard to the business opportunity and whether it aligns with their values is key.”

There are several different factors that weigh in this regard. Some people choose to invest in a franchise simply because they’re banking on a trustworthy name to help their money grow on the path to financial security. Others look into particular franchises because of the lifestyle they can promise—flexible hours, the ability to be your own boss, and do all of this without having to spend the stressful and often thankless years developing a business name and reputation. Sport Clips franchises offer many of the same benefits, but also require a considerable amount of responsibility and dedication.

Eulentrop continues “They also need to determine if the salon environment is something they will enjoy. It is a very different environment than construction or ice cream. This is a people-first business model. They must be comfortable managing and growing people.” Indeed successful Sport Clips franchises are dependent on the people that make them run, including the barbers and hairstylists that are hired on to work at each location. Franchise owners must be comfortable working with and developing their staff.

The Proof Is In the Numbers

While this selection process may be extremely rigorous, the success is undeniable. If you’re looking for proof, look no further than the brand’s exceptional continuity rate, one of the key metrics to consider when weighing a franchise opportunity’s health and investment growth potential. Over the three years ending with the year 2016, Sport Clips carried a 99.7 percent continuity rate, one of the strongest of any franchise opportunity in the country.

As a result, franchisees who are selected upon completion of their Discovery Day are generally given an opportunity that’s both personally-fulfilling and financially-rewarding. Eulentrop concludes, “Seeing a person who came to this process burned out from their corporate job, wanting to build something for themselves and their family, actually be able to quit their day job and grow their business, that is very rewarding. And with Sport Clips I get to see it a lot.”

For more information about becoming a Sport Clips, Inc. franchisee, click here to learn more!