انتخاب شرکای فرانشیز (فرانچایز) : روش ها، فرآیندها و معیارهای فرانشیز گردشگری
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|2980||2013||10 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Tourism Management, Volume 37, August 2013, Pages 176–185
This paper identifies and evaluates the partner selection approaches, processes and criteria use by tourism franchisees to select their franchisor partners. A qualitative study of a sample of Turkish franchisees identifies the partner selection criteria and two distinct approaches used to select franchisor partners. The study contributes to our understanding of franchisee partner selection by demonstrating how the selection criteria, approaches and processes impact on franchisee satisfaction post contract signature. In addition, a framework that depicts the relationship between the criteria, approaches and processes is developed from the study. The study yields a number of implications particularly for prospective franchisees interested in joining a franchise network.
The high cost and risk of starting up new businesses and penetrating new markets is a major force that drives firms to work in partnership (Guilloux, Gauzente, Kalika, & Dubost, 2004; Tuunanen & Hyrsky, 2001). One type of partnership that has been growing in popularity in the tourism industry is business format franchising (Brookes & Roper, 2012; Cho, 2004; Mason & Duquette, 2008; Rodriguez, 2002). This popularity can be explained through the contribution of franchising to national economies in developed and emergent markets (Dant, Grunhagen, & Windsperger, 2011; European Franchise Federation (EFF), 2011; Wright & McAuley, 2011); through the transfer of knowledge and innovation from one tourism destination to another (Hjalager, 2007); through the contribution to local tourism development and the regeneration of local communities by stimulating entrepreneurship and innovation (Mason & Duquette, 2008); and by enabling tourists to travel to different tourism destinations without having to change their consumption behaviours (Scarpato & Daniele, 2003). In business format franchising, there are also complementary benefits that accrue to both franchisees and franchisors. Franchisees gain access to a proven brand concept and business system, and franchisors gain access to the franchisees' local market knowledge (Brookes & Altinay, 2011). However, these benefits can also be the cause of tension between franchisors who want to maintain brand uniformity and franchisees who want the autonomy to respond to local market demands (Weavin & Frazer, 2007). These tensions are compounded and exacerbated in geographically dispersed and differentiated markets (Cox & Mason, 2007). One of the most efficient and effective ways of reducing these tensions between franchisors and franchisees is to select the right partner (Brookes & Altinay, 2011; Doherty, 2009; Huang, 2006). More specifically, selecting the right partners can help to insure against the risk of franchisees' opportunistic behaviour and the potential damage this can cause to brand uniformity and image (Fladmoe-Lindquist, 2000). For franchisees, partner selection is also important to mitigate investment risks and ensure franchisors deliver the support promised (Clarkin & Rosa, 2005). Despite the importance of partner selection, it remains a relatively unexplored area, particularly within international franchise contexts (Doherty, 2009). Previous empirical studies have identified different approaches to partner selection and the relevance of the processes and criteria used (Altinay, 2006; Doherty, 2009; Guilloux et al., 2004). However, they have tended to examine partner selection from the franchisor's viewpoint. Given that franchisees also incur risks when entering into franchise partnerships (Dada, Watson, & Kirby, 2010; Guilloux et al., 2004), the value of partner selection research from the perspective of the franchisee has been recognised (Cho, 2004; Doherty, 2009). This paper therefore aims to identify the approaches, processes and criteria employed by tourism franchisees when entering into a franchise partnership. Answering calls for franchise research outside of a North American context (Dant, 2008), it evaluates the inter-relationship of these three elements of partner selection in a sample of franchisees in Turkey, a country which has witnessed substantial growth in franchising (EFF, 2011). This paper begins by examining the extant franchise literature in order to identify the factors that influence franchise partner selection. The qualitative design of the research is then explained before the findings are presented. The study identifies the partner selection criteria employed and two different approaches to partner selection and the decision-making processes. As such, it makes two contributions to the literature. Firstly, the paper remedies an important research gap by providing empirical evidence on how the selection criteria and the approach used impacts on tourism franchisee satisfaction in the post-partnership stage. Secondly, the paper develops a framework of franchisee partner selection that depicts the relationship between the approach, the process, and the criteria used by tourism franchisees. The paper concludes by highlighting these key contributions and discussing the implications of the study for tourism franchisees, franchisors and franchise associations, and for future research.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Given the importance of franchising to national economies and the tourism industry, and the role of partner selection in developing successful tourism franchise partnerships, it is vital that partner selection is understood from the perspective of both partners in the relationship. Responding to the call for research into how franchisees select their franchise partners (Brookes & Altinay, 2011; Cho, 2004; Doherty, 2009), this paper has sought to contribute to our understanding by investigating partner selection approaches, processes and the criteria used by tourism franchisees to select franchisor partners. While previous research has identified the importance of approaches, processes and criteria in franchise partner selection, no previous study, to our knowledge, has looked at the combined effects of these in franchisee partner selection. By examining these three factors concurrently, a theoretical framework of franchisee partner selection has been developed. This framework demonstrates the criteria that should be considered by tourism franchisees to select their franchisor partners and the findings provide some insight as to why these particular criteria are important within the food and beverage industries. The framework also displays the alternative approaches and the processes that could be employed in selecting franchisor partners, and the potential implications for franchisees who adopt these different approaches. As such, this study makes a distinct contribution to the literature by providing empirical evidence of the use of defined partner selection criteria on post-partnership satisfaction. Selecting franchisors that cannot meet the required task and partner-related criteria can lead to franchisee dissatisfaction. This, in turn, acts as a drawback to the entrepreneurial expectations, aspirations and achievement orientations of franchisees and thus to the divergence of franchisor and franchisee goals. This study also demonstrates the opportunity cost of adopting an opportunistic approach to partner selection for franchisees. Whilst quick, simultaneous decisions may facilitate the realisation of first-mover advantages, this approach may also incur longer-term costs associated with franchisee dissatisfaction and the impact this has on brand reputation and network growth. A strategic approach to partner selection, meanwhile, enables franchisees to assess the reputation and reliability of the franchisor and thus decide if the potential franchisors have the ability to meet task-related criteria. This study also offers interesting insights into the socio-economic complexities of franchising in emerging economies by comparing partnerships with international and domestic franchisors in the food and beverage sectors. Strategic approaches to partner selection were predominantly adopted by franchisees joining international tourism networks. Furthermore, these approaches tended to be driven by international franchisors. Within domestic tourism networks, franchisees predominantly adopted opportunistic approaches with the negative consequences previously identified. Unique institutional and market knowledge therefore cannot be overlooked in the establishment of partnerships in different country markets. With its steady cash flow and relatively less vulnerability to economic crises, the food and beverage sectors of the tourism industry offer tremendous opportunities to entrepreneurs who would like to start up a new business. In terms of the business format, franchise partnerships minimise the risk of a new business start-up and its operation. However, those entrepreneurs who endeavour to enter into these sectors and be part of a franchise chain need to understand the complexities of both the sectors and the franchise business format. Food and beverage sectors are customer-focused sectors and therefore inconsistencies in product and service quality could lead to customer dissatisfaction. The business format franchise could be seen as a ‘safe umbrella’ that helps ensure uniformity and consistency in terms of standards and thus protect potential franchisees in these sectors against the risks of losing their customers. However, this requires the franchisees and franchisors running the franchise system in tandem and in synergy, with strong awareness of the growing bargaining power and low switching costs of customers in the food and beverage sectors. Selecting the ‘right partner’ could act as a prerequisite for a sustainable, cohesive customer-oriented partnership. Within this contextual framework, this study yields a number of recommendations to prospective tourism franchisees, franchisors and franchise associations, particularly in emergent markets. Franchisees must be made aware that despite offering a ‘quick to market’ opportunity, research is still required to assess the feasibility of the new venture and ensure a long-term partnership with the franchisor. Both task and partner-related criteria should be objectively assessed prior to contract signature in order to minimise franchisee risks. In particular, a strategic approach to partner selection would enable them to make healthy decisions underpinned by research and a relatively thorough assessment of both the task and partner-related criteria deemed important prior to signing a contractual agreement. As this study illustrates, ‘acting in haste’ may lead to franchisee dissatisfaction, leaving them to ‘repent at leisure’. Tourism franchisors that are committed to building a sustainable network should therefore encourage franchisees to undertake more detailed research on the feasibility of the franchise concept in their locations and spend more time interacting with them so that franchisees can assess partner-related criteria and a degree of trust can be established. Even if this process slows down network growth in the short term, it is likely to lead to greater franchisee satisfaction and long-term network growth. Finally, franchise associations have an obligation to ensure franchisor members have demonstrated their capability in meeting the task and partner-related criteria identified in this study. They should also provide support for prospective franchisees to aid them in undertaking sufficient research using these criteria in their decision-making process. This would help to align franchisee expectations with the franchisor capabilities. Despite the contributions of this study, it is not without its limitations. However, our hope is that these limitations will direct future research. Firstly, it should be noted that the findings are based on an exploratory qualitative study. Whilst qualitative research enabled a detailed exploration of how franchisor partners are selected (Brookes & Altinay, 2011; Doherty, 2009), and the development of a framework, further research that tests this framework quantitatively is warranted. Such research could address the shortcomings of this study, such as subjectivity of the research, the inability to make predictions, and the lack of understanding related to the strength of the relationships between different variables. Further research across a wider and more diverse industrial sample and in different country markets would also help to develop the generalisability of the findings.