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THE BALANCING ACT: RUNNING A SUCCESSFUL FAMILY FRANCHISE: Why open, honest and constructive communication is necessary in a family business.

When it comes to operating a business, sometimes the best business partner can be found under your own roof. The franchise industry is full of partners who are also family members or investors who buy in to a franchise with the expectation of building a legacy brand. Throughout the United States, family run businesses have been the backbone driving local and national economies. As of 2019, family businesses account for more than half of the country's gross domestic product.

RNR Tire Express launched its franchise opportunity in the early 2000s, with the first four franchisees having been father-son teams. Since then, more than 50 percent of the brand's franchisees are familial partnerships. Today, the brand is led by a father-son team, Larry and Adam Sutton. The fusion of impressive skillsets and unique personalities throughout the system is ultimately responsible for driving the success of the brand.

So, what has RNR learned about being in business with family?

* Build a Team You Can Trust

* Foster Your Relationship

* Embrace Differences

By using the criteria above, RNR's leaders, Larry and Adam, have successfully developed the formula for success. While the two certainly don't agree on everything, a common entrepreneurial spirit allows them to succeed together.

Build a Team You Can Trust

Working with family in a franchise operation comes with its own challenges. The key to a successful business is having a partner that you can place 100 percent of your confidence and trust in. Since most are willing to go above and beyond to support their family members, this is a quality and bond that is unique to familial business partnerships.

With the unique support of a family member comes the ability to communicate openly, honestly, and constructively--more so than one might with a stranger. Objective evaluation of each other's performance and goal achievement fosters a smoother partnership and operation. Successful partnerships are not only built on blood lines but on mutual support and recognition of talents, personalities and business experiences.

Foster Your Relationship

With years of familiarity, it's easy to work alongside a family member. You've already built a trusting relationship with this person and understand their idiosyncrasies, strengths, limitations --which makes it easier to align yourself on a vision and goal.

When working with a family member, you also have the opportunity to see that person in a different light and to add another dimension to your relationship. Use this as an opportunity to evolve as a professional. However, it is critical to create clear separation between family time and business time. When the two begin to intertwine, life becomes a constant state of work and tension is sure to ensue. Be sure that you are still fostering the personal side of your relationship in order to bring out the best version of yourselves when it comes to the workplace.

Embrace Differences

Each family member has a unique personality and skillset, just as any good business partnership should. Aim to assign each partner a clearly-defined role tailored to another's vantage point and unique strengths to ensure a well-rounded team and success in the long run. Differences in personality can help bring a complementary balance to a partnership --granting the opportunity to bring new ideas to the table and ensure a well-rounded business approach.

Because of the differences in personality, think about your partners and their needs by putting yourself in their shoes. Once you can understand things from their point of view, then you can effectively set each other up for success. When working with different personalities and skillsets, it is never safe to assume the job will be accomplished in only one way. It's important to recognize others' work styles and learning styles, respecting and empowering one another in order to succeed.

By Larry Sutton, RNR Tire Express

Larry Sutton is the Founder and CEO of RNR Tire Express offering quality tires and custom wheels to customers a convenient, no hassle payment plan that fits every budget. Established in 2000, Larry has grown the brand to over 125 locations in 24 states. With the help of his son Adam, Executive Vice President of RNR Tire Express, RNR Tire Express has become the fastest-growing tire and custom wheel franchise in the nation. For more information on RNR Tire Express, visit
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Title Annotation:OPERATIONS
Comment:THE BALANCING ACT: RUNNING A SUCCESSFUL FAMILY FRANCHISE: Why open, honest and constructive communication is necessary in a family business.(OPERATIONS)
Author:Sutton, Larry
Publication:Franchising World
Date:Dec 1, 2019
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