Monday, January 22, 2007

Teaching Microfranchising

Brigham Young University's Center for Economic Self-Reliance publishes a handbook entitled Where There Are No Jobs that is a how-to manual for teachers to teach individuals in developing countries how to successfully start and run microenterprises. The main author is an entreprenuer, Steve Gibson, who in addition to his personal financial success, has created a business school for microentreprenuers in the Phillippines called The Academy for Creating Enterprise. The handbook is a result of lessons learned from Steve's development and refinement of the Academy. It focuses on core business principles that seemed to elude his budding entreprenuers. The handbook is also prepared with lesson plans (that use the case study method) for organizations who want to combine business education with such programs as microcredit.

Microfranchising became part of Steve's operations as he monitored the businesses of early graduates, identified successful businesses, and then helped to replicate those businesses according to a franchise model. Graduates of the educational program now do not necessarily have to go through the process of creating a new business and launching it, they can purchase a franchise of one of the successful models and off they go.

The fourth book in the series of "Where There Are No Jobs" is one of the first publications focusing on franchising in the informal markets of poor countries with extremely practical guides and lesson examples of how to teach good business principles to small enterprise owners. I would look for Brigham Young University to continue to publish works that focus on Microfranchising. I think many microfinance institutions would be interested in the concept of microfranchising and offering them to their clients. A successful business model would be a less-risky investment and perhaps their clients would see less business failure.

No comments: