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Inspire | Franchisee

great opportunity. We decided to take on the challenge with our first Bakers Delight bakery at Lilydale, Victoria. Since taking over the bakery we believe the head office support we have received has been instrumental in our success. From the initial baking and business training, to the ingredient buying power and scale of marketing support, our bakery has received huge benefit. I know through my previous experience as a small business owner, the support of others is extremely important. For things like the Food Safety system for instance, because Bakers Delight has its own internal quality assurance programs, our bakery often exceeds industry standards.

4. What surprised you about the business? Probably the amount of hours you have to put in each week to get the most out of the business. As a business owner, you have to be prepared to invest time in hiring and training the right staff to set up your business successfully. As a franchisee, you start out on a four-month training course to learn all aspects of the business and the trade. I found that the theory in training assisted me in setting up my bakery, but found that a lot of learning is done ‘on the job’. You learn as you go and our approach at first was to invest a lot of time at the bakery learning sytems to show our staff and apprentices that we are invested in the business’ success.

2. How long have you been in the system? We have been franchisees at Bakers Delight for almost 12 months.

5. How do you spend an average working day? It changes from day-to-day, but I try not to roster myself on the bakery too much so I can be fluid in my movements. I work in production and sales. It’s important to know how both ends of your bakery are operating. When I am not working, I usually take my kids to school, come in and sometimes will help the staff with the rest of the day’s production. I might chat to the front of house staff to see if there is anything else they want us to bake based on sales. I like to use the days where I am not rostered on to really step back and oversee the business, see where the opportunities are and work on improving them.

3. How did you come to decide on this brand? Through word of mouth; there was just no negative feedback about Bakers Delight and it was a trusted brand which was really important to my wife and me. Now that we are in the network and part of it, we see why it is such a positive place to work. For me it is also inspiring to witness founders, Roger and Lesley Gillespie, still taking

Image: Bakers Delight

6. How do you manage the roles as partners in the business? I am in partnership with my wife, Lisa, who runs the front of house whereas my focus is predominately back of house and the baking side of things. We decided on this prior to going into the business together. We wanted to streamline operations, have areas of expertise and allow for a better work-life balance for our family. We have friends who have since joined the Bakers Delight network and they run their businesses in a similar way.

a hands-on approach in running the network. We have no doubt that we made the right choice by joining Bakers Delight. 38| FRANCHISING mAY/JUN 2013


7. How has the franchisor training helped you in business? In terms of the people side of things, having run my own business in the past, I was used to the hiring and firing staff. But as part of your franchisee training, Bakers Delight gives you HR tips and one that stuck with me was the ‘sandwich effect’ when giving feedback to staff – telling them one thing they do well before offering your constructive criticism and ending on a positive note. What was most invaluable was obviously the technical baking training. For the first four years you can pick it up pretty quickly, but you are still in learning mode. At Bakers Delight we have area

Franchising Magazine May / June 2013  

What should you look for in a franchise? Find out nine key elements to consider before you purchase in the latest issue of Franchising magaz...