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Franchise leaders unite under IFA's umbrella: in its unique position as the "umbrella" organization for all segments of franchising: franchisors, franchisees and suppliers, IFA is charged with setting the highest principles and goals for franchising as well as developing the leaders to carry those goals forward. (Follow The Leaders of Franchising).

"We are on the threshold of a whole new world for business-format franchising," says James H. Amos Jr., CFE CFE Conventional Forces in Europe (treaty)
CFE Cash Flow to Equity (finance/accounting)
CFE Comisión Federal de Electricidad (México)
CFE Certified Fraud Examiner
. "It is changing, and as it is changing, it is taking us back to what made franchising powerful in the beginning--solid relationships based on real and recognized accountability."

Amos, chair of the International Franchise Association (IFA Immunofluorescent assay (IFA)
A blood test sometimes used to confirm ELISA results instead of using the Western blotting. In an IFA test, HIV antigen is mixed with a fluorescent compound and then with a sample of the patient's blood.
) and Mail Boxes Etc.'s president and CEO (1) (Chief Executive Officer) The highest individual in command of an organization. Typically the president of the company, the CEO reports to the Chairman of the Board. , is intensely focused on strengthening relationships and accountability throughout the franchise community. It's his top priority. As the outgoing chairman of the association, he looks back on a term highlighted by two major initiatives: system-wide membership for franchisees and a comprehensive self-regulation program for the franchise community. Working hand-in-hand with Amos and IFA's board of directors to implement these programs are leaders from the three segments of franchising that come together under IFA's umbrella: franchisors, franchisees and suppliers of goods and services In economics, economic output is divided into physical goods and intangible services. Consumption of goods and services is assumed to produce utility (unless the "good" is a "bad"). It is often used when referring to a Goods and Services Tax.  to the franchise community.

"I believe there are three kinds of people or organizations in this world: those who watch things happen, those who make things happen and those who have no idea what happened! Obviously IFA decided a long time ago that it needed to be one of those organizations that make things happen," comments Lloyd Tarbutton, CFE, who speaks to IFA's leadership role from nearly 30 years of experience. As founder and CEO of Econo Lodges Econo Lodge is an economy motel chain based in the United States. Econo Lodge is the second largest brand in the Choice Hotels system. It is one of the best known names of its category and provides affordable rooms to budget travelers. , he attended his first IFA convention in 1973, quickly became active in association activities and rose to the position of chairman in 1978. He still is involved in the Past Chairman's Committee, received the prestigious Hall of Fame Award last year and currently serves as vice chair of the Awards Committee.

One of the franchisees who helps make things happen at IFA is Regina Gardner of Uniglobe Dynamic Travel in Houston. She headed up the first IFA Franchisee Advisory Council (now the Franchisee Forum) when the association invited franchisees to become members in 1993 and is now in her second, four-year term on the IFA board of directors, while remaining active in the forum. "I am so proud of franchisee involvement in IFA," she says. "Because of it, IFA is a much better organization." Gardner believes that system-wide membership of franchisees is a major breakthrough for advancing franchising's goals. "As more and more of us participate and buy into IFA as an organization, legislators will recognize that thousands and thousands of franchisees are active members."

And as active members, many of them will become leaders. "IFA generates leaders for franchising and attracts them," according to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.

2. In keeping with: according to instructions.

 attorney Carl Zwisler of the Washington, D.C., office of Jenkens & Gilchrist. Zwisler's involvement with IFA goes back more than 25 years, first as a staff member, then as a supplier in various roles, including past chair of the Supplier Forum, member of the board of directors and of several standing committees. "IFA helps shape leaders," Zwisler continues. "People who want to have an impact on something other than their own company join IFA, and those who become active are by definition leaders, because once you get on a working committee, it will be looking for Looking for

In the context of general equities, this describing a buy interest in which a dealer is asked to offer stock, often involving a capital commitment. Antithesis of in touch with.
 people to lead on projects."

Why a Self-Regulation Program?

After two years of in-depth discussions with all three segments of IFA's membership, a comprehensive self-regulation program was adopted by the association's board of directors in 2001 to provide an effective alternative to litigation An action brought in court to enforce a particular right. The act or process of bringing a lawsuit in and of itself; a judicial contest; any dispute.

When a person begins a civil lawsuit, the person enters into a process called litigation.
 and legislation, both of which are costly, time consuming and potentially destructive to franchising. The program's key components are: a revised and straightforward Code of Ethics Code of Ethics can refer to:
  • Ethical code, a code of professional responsibility, noting what behaviors are "ethical".
  • Code of Ethics (band), a 90's Christian New Wave/Pop band
; a code enforcement Code Enforcement is the act of enforcing a set of s, principles, or laws (especially written ones) and insuring observance of a system of norms or customs. An authority usually enforces a civil code, a set of rules, or a body of laws and compel those subject to their authority to  mechanism; an ombudsman ombudsman (äm`bədzmən) [Swed.,=agent or representative], public official appointed to deal with individual complaints against government acts.  program; an investor awareness Investor Awareness is knowledge the investment community has of a company. [1] It can be looked at like this: “Do investors know about your company?” If the answer is “yes,” then it could be said that the company has “good investor awareness”  education program; a franchise compliance education program and a reward and recognition program.

The revisions to the IFA code transformed a four-page legal document that few people read and fewer understood into a clearly worded one-page statement reflecting IFA's commitment to positive franchise relationships. "The code is not intended to anticipate every possible occurrence that could happen in a franchise relationship, but rather to articulate what essentially is a set of values," Amos explains.

Gardner comments, "The change from an operational code to an "aspirational" code really established the framework for the implementation of best practices in franchise relations. The new code is straightforward; it can be understood by all parties, and it contributes to IFA's leadership role."

Under the revised enforcement mechanism of the code, alleged violations by a member company are reviewed by the IFA Executive Committee, which determines what, if any, sanctions Sanctions is the plural of sanction. Depending on context, a sanction can be either a punishment or a permission. The word is a contronym.

Sanctions involving countries:
 may be appropriate. Sanctions range from a reprimand REPRIMAND, punishment. The censure which in some cases a public office pronounces against an offender.
     2. This species of punishment is used by legislative bodies to punish their members or others who have been guilty of some impropriety of conduct towards them.
 to suspension to, in extreme cases, termination of membership. "Since we have instituted this process, we have applied lighter sanctions so far; we haven't come to the place where we needed to terminate," Amos says. "But if that were indicated by the tone or tenor or substance of a violation, I can absolutely assure you we would take that action.

"The process is healthy," Amos continues. "It simplified the code; it put in teeth in terms of sanctions. I believe it makes IFA stronger as a truly representative umbrella organization
For the fictional company set in the Resident Evil videogame series, see Umbrella Corporation.

An umbrella organization is an association of (often related, industry-specific) institutions, who work together formally to coordinate activities or
 for all of franchising."

The Ombudsman Program

A central component of the self-regulation initiative is the ombudsman program, designed to curb and resolve disputes between franchisors and franchisees in a non-legal manner. IFA named Julie Becker, president of JBA (JBA International, Inc., Rolling Meadows, IL) A global developer and supplier of enterprise resource planning (ERP) software for AS/400, Unix and NT platforms. Founded in 1981 as Johnston Brown Associates, in 1999, it was acquired by Canadian-based Geac Computer Corporation.  Dispute Resolution. L.L.C., as its ombudsman, and the program she tailored especially for IFA's members was introduced in March. During Becker's 26-year career at McDonald's Corp., she was the company's ombudsman from 1989 to 1997, handling disputes including store awards, store sales, contract rewrites, relationships, operations and financial problems.

Becker says the first hurdle to implementing an ombudsman program is getting people to know and understand what it is all about. "If you didn't operate in a world that had an ombudsman, you wouldn't know what one was," she says. "The toughest row to hoe hoe, usually a flat blade, variously shaped, set in a long wooden handle and used primarily for weeding and for loosening the soil. It was the first distinctly agricultural implement. The earliest hoes were forked sticks.  is going to be communicating to the franchisees, educating them as to what it is and that it is available to them."

While there is never an "average" or "typical" case, Becket beck·et  
n. Nautical
A device, such as a looped rope, hook and eye, strap, or grommet, used to hold or fasten loose ropes, spars, or oars in position.

[Origin unknown.]

Noun 1.
 describes a possible ombudsman scenario this way: "Someone calls with an issue to address. We talk it through--how it was done before, how it's being done now, what changed. Did they communicate their problem to the other side? Based on that, and my knowledge of franchising and of the particular industry, I do some research and contact the subject matter experts available to me. I try to get a sense of what is normal in the industry and compare that to what has happened to this person. Then we talk about the different courses of action available. These might include talking it over with local management or with higher management of the company. Or I could get involved in the case on an informal basis to see if there is some fairly simple way to work it out. Or the matter could go to a formal mediation through the National Franchise Mediation Program, which is designed specifically for franchise companies. Or we can go to arbitration. I find out if the franchise agreement has dispute resolution processes written in; some require arbitration, some mediation."

Although the ombudsman program is still in its infancy, it is generating a good deal of interest within the franchise community. "It gives franchisees and franchisors an opportunity to resolve their differences with highly-trained individuals in a fair, impartial Favoring neither; disinterested; treating all alike; unbiased; equitable, fair, and just. , confidential and cost effective way," says Regina Gardner. "Everybody is excited about this program."

"I know how useful an ombudsman program can be for franchisors from my eight years of being ombudsman for McDonald's," Becker says. "Barely any of the issues we looked at went on to any kind of litigation. We were able to resolve so much from just being there, listening, being neutral, collecting the facts and insisting that the facts be what the decision was based on."

Education and Recognition

The final two elements of IFA's self-regulation plan relate to providing the educational programs and recognition vehicles that advance knowledge and best practices in franchising. On the educational side, two new online programs are available now on the IFA Web site, "Franchising Basics" and "Franchise Sales Compliance."

Zwisler, who was involved in writing "Franchising Basics," says the course is intended to provide investors with the most comprehensive opportunities to learn about the many facets of franchising before they invest. "We are not only telling what a franchise is, but spending some time telling some of the differences between franchise concepts and companies, talking about a lot of variables that often get brushed over in a briefer treatment. This will also be beneficial to regulators and lawmakers, because if they have a serious interest in learning about franchising, we try to address some of the myths and half-truths or wrong information that circulates about franchising."

In the compliance course, Zwisler says, "Franchise lawyers have put together information that explains the nuts and bolts nuts and bolts
pl.n. Slang
The basic working components or practical aspects: "[proposing]
 of how to comply with franchise laws--to protect themselves from liability, to comply with the FTC FTC

See Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
 (Federal Trade Commission) Rules, to make sure that prospective franchisees and franchisees in their system are getting what they are entitled en·ti·tle  
tr.v. en·ti·tled, en·ti·tling, en·ti·tles
1. To give a name or title to.

2. To furnish with a right or claim to something:
 to under their franchise agreements."

As the final component of its self-regulation program, IFA is developing a reward and recognition program that will highlight best practices in franchise relationships and recognize systems with innovative and effective programs. The association is partnering with J.D. Power and Associates to develop a comprehensive, independent survey to track and trend franchisee attitudes, satisfaction and emerging issues. A pilot study to help shape and refine methods for the overall study is under consideration.

Creating Leaders

IFA is able to pursue its ambitious agenda only because of its diverse and inclusive membership that enables it to develop leaders in all segments of franchising. The volunteers who serve on the board of directors, the franchisor forum, the franchisee forum, the supplier forum and numerous committees and task forces are the leaders who speak for IFA in the franchise community and the world beyond.

Lloyd Tarbutton learned the value of committee involvement many years ago when his mentor, Palmer Waslien of Southland south·land or South·land  
A region in the south of a country or an area.

southland·er n.

Noun 1.
 Corporation, talked to him about how to be a franchise leader. "He said to get more active in the IFA committees. So I got involved in the education committee, wound up being its chairman and then going up the line to eventually become IFA chairman." Tarbutton cautions, though, that it is important to continually develop new leadership as older members step aside. "It's like being a grandfather. You have to give the kids room to grow and run."

Regina Gardner believes it is critical for anyone who wants to be involved in the franchise community to be involved in committee work. "I don't think there is anyone now on the IFA Board who could have possibly had the understanding and knowledge to offer something as a board member without being on committees. Participating in these committees gives you a broader range and perspective, which in turn allows you to develop into a leader in the community."

Jim Amos calls the IFA committees proving grounds
Proving Grounds is a third season episode of Beast Wars. Plot
Blackarachnia is growing steadily more annoyed with the tension between her and the Maximals.
 for the next generation of leaders. "These folks find themselves in the committee eye-to-eye with some of the most tested and proven individuals in the business. That's where I grew up in franchising."

As IFA leaders look to the future, Amos believes managing change is their single most significant challenge. "The business cycle that has always been there -- entrepreneurship growth, decline and renewal has never changed, but the velocity of that cycle has been compressed to the point where no organization or business can afford to be anywhere but in a constant state of renewal today."

Recalling an ancient Chinese List of ancient Chinese is a list of noteworthy people of ancient China. Different definitions of "ancient" China exist, but most agree that it is before the Tang dynasty. Related lists
A general listing of existing lists related to this topic.
 imprecation im·pre·ca·tion  
1. The act of imprecating.

2. A curse.


Formal a curse [Latin imprecari to invoke]

imprecate vb
: "I curse Curse
Ancient Mariner

cursed by the crew because his slaying of the albatross is causing their deaths. [Br. Poetry: Coleridge The Rime of the Ancient Mariner]


king of the dwarfs; his malediction spurs many events in the
 you to live in significant times," Amos observes: "In light of recent events, all of us recognize that we are really living in significant times here. It just brings greater emphasis and importance to this whole issue of leadership. It may be the most challenging time in recent memory for leadership."

Polly Polly Biotechnology A Poll Dorset sheep cloned from sheep skin cells, which has a human gene in each cell. See Dolly.  Larson is a freelance writer based in Laurel Laurel, cities, United States

1 Town (1990 pop. 19,438), Prince Georges co., central Md., about halfway between Washington, D.C., and Baltimore; patented in the late 1600s, inc. 1870.
, Md. She was editor of Franchising World for 14 years before retiring in 2000.
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Title Annotation:International Franchise Association
Author:Larson, Polly
Publication:Franchising World
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2002
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