The Entrepreneur’s Corner

Is franchise ownership for you?
While the summer has brought mixed signals regarding the struggling economy, there are signs that consumers are beginning to spend again and it appears that a few companies are beginning to re-hire workers they had to lay off months ago.

As a new business owner who looks forward to marking the first anniversary of operating my own retail franchise, I certainly hope a consistent economic recovery comes sooner rather than later. As I establish myself as a franchise owner and discover the benefits of being my own boss I wonder if other hard-working individuals have considered franchise ownership as a career.

For my family and me, it’s been a rewarding move.

Nearly two years ago, while living in Egypt, my wife and I decided to move to the United States. Earlier in my career, I held management positions with fast food and coffee service companies, but had always wanted to run my own business. As my wife and I considered making a career and location switch, I found myself becoming interested in the franchising program that 7-Eleven offered -- one that provided a proven successful franchising system along with the support of the world’s largest convenience retailer.

Whether you’re looking to be your own boss, or considering a second career, I would recommend considering the franchising model of business. For someone looking for an opportunity in an established business with an established name, you can pretty much learn the system and go. Plus, in my case, I have the backing of a corporate powerhouse that knows how to run a smart business.

Franchising is a good investment for people who:

• are business savvy and know what it takes to succeed;

• are hardworking and willing to put in long hours to have the store reflect the way you want it to be;

• enjoy working with and managing people;

• have some savings and a good credit rating (if you can buy a house, you can buy a franchise);

• understand the bigger corporate picture (I bought into the 7-Eleven logo, so I need to protect and support the brand).

If you have an interest in franchising, the first step is to attend an educational seminar. Most companies offer free seminars that provide detailed information and guidelines that help you determine if franchising makes sense for you.

Although I’m working a full-time shift at the Glenside location, I am considering becoming a franchise owner of a second 7-Eleven in the future. The opportunity to expand and grow is exciting and in spite of the economic uncertainty I am an optimist when I think of the future.

When people say, “Don’t you get tired of that door bell ringing when people come into your store?” I say – no way! I can hear that all day and all night. It means business is good and I’m doing something right.

Abdel-Masseh Hanna is the franchise owner of the 7-Eleven at 4001 Glenside Drive in Henrico County. He took ownership of the store on April and came to 7-Eleven with experience as a mid-level manager, with a background in food service and retail management.
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Community

Villa’s Flagler Housing wins national NAEH award


St. Joseph's Villa’s Flagler Housing & Homeless Services was one of three entities to earn the National Alliance to End Homelessness' Champion of Change Award. The awards were presented Nov. 17 during a ceremony at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

NAEH annually recognizes proven programs and significant achievements in ending child and family homelessness.

Flagler completed its transition from an on-campus shelter to the community-based model of rapid rehousing in 2013, and it was one of the nation's first rapid re-housing service providers to be certified by NAEH. > Read more.

RIR’s Christmas tree lighting rescheduled for Dec. 12


Richmond International Raceway's 13th annual Community Christmas tree lighting has been rescheduled from Dec. 6 to Monday, Dec. 12, at 6:30 p.m., due to inclement weather expected on the original date.

Entertainment Dec. 12 will be provided by the Laburnum Elementary School choir and the Henrico High School Mighty Marching Warriors band. Tree decorations crafted by students from Laburnum Elementary School and L. Douglas Wilder Middle School will be on display. Hot chocolate and cookies will be supplied by the Henrico High School football boosters. > Read more.
Entertainment

Weekend Top 10


If the snow last weekend had you stuck at home, then you will appreciate free admission all weekend long at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden! Other free options this weekend include a Classic Family Film series at Varina Library, “Crafternoon” at Libbie Mill Library and the tenth annual Richmond Jewish Food Festival taking place Sunday and Monday at the Weinstein JCC. Concert options include the 8th annual Djangoary Music Soiree at The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen and Flight Risk, performing at The Tin Pan. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

 

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The Shepherd’s Center continues its Open University four-week winter lecture series “Lunch and Life” at 12:30 p.m. at St. Mary Catholic Church, 9505 Gayton Rd. Gregory Gilligan, business editor at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, will present “Retail Update: Grocery Wars.” A brown bag lunch precedes at noon with dessert and beverages provided. The series is open to all persons 50+ at no charge. For details, call 355-7282 or visit http://www.tscor.org. Full text

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