Why Franchising is like Fishing

Estimated Reading Time: 10 mins, 30 secs.

If you’re reading this blog, you are probably considering owning a franchise, or maybe you’re really into fishing. If you think about it, franchising is like fishing.

When you own a franchise business, you are the captain of your own ship. As a result, you chart your own course. You also have the added benefit of the franchisor as a seasoned navigator. The franchisor has traveled the waters before and is there to provide advice to keep you afloat.  Here are some key things to consider about franchising before you dive in.

Franchising is like Fishing - Postcard Portables

Prepare Before You Launch

It can be hard to let go of your current job, even when you’re dissatisfied. You may cling on hoping things will improve and pray your steady income continues. It is important that you prepare before you launch and choose the right franchise opportunity to achieve your personal and business goals.

With so many franchise opportunities available, you may not know where to start. The Canadian Franchise Association, Canada’s franchising authority for over 50 years, offers many resources including government primers, statistical data, reports, and articles. You can buy their official starter kit which includes guidebooks, member directory, magazines, and question checklists for just $40.

Since it’s an important decision and you’ll invest a sizable sum, don’t rush the process. The following suggestions will help you narrow your choices, pinpoint good franchisors, and find the one that suits you best.

What Are Your Goals?

Everyone has their own motivation for entrepreneurship so consider your goals. Are you interested in a better work/life balance, greater income, building equity, or unlimited growth potential? The franchise you select should flow from what you’re trying to accomplish.

What Role Do You Want To Play?

Some franchises offer hands-on opportunities as an owner/operator who’s directly involved in running the business. Others involve hiring staff who manage day-to-day operations and the franchisee provides oversight. Consider what you see yourself doing on a daily basis.

How Much Time Do You Have?

Few franchises allow you to work part-time and retain your full-time job. Some allow you to start as a home-based business and as your business grows you have the option to transition to a brick and mortar establishment.

However, if you’re just looking to supplement your income by working evenings or weekends, you’ll find far less opportunities. Franchisors want dedicated franchisees to strengthen their network and increase profits.

What Are Your Skills?

When considering a franchise, you may not need to know the industry, since many franchisors provide system training and support. However, good franchisors are also very selective. They search for the best-qualified candidates with the skills and capital needed for success.

If a franchisor is too eager to sign you without understanding what you offer, be wary. Good franchisors want to know whether you have entrepreneurial drive and basic business skills such as sales, marketing, and customer service experience, before they welcome you into the fold.

What’s Your Budget?

Franchise costs vary greatly and buying a franchise for $10,000 isn’t necessarily a good investment. It is more likely to be in a very competitive, saturated market with a high turnover rate. Additionally, inexpensive franchises usually offer little support or training and it’s harder to build a business you can resell.

Weigh your initial investment against the expected return and whether the business model suits your goals. If you don’t want to invest heavily, consider a home-based business that you can start quickly and affordably.

Thoroughly analyze your financial situation and calculate your maximum budget, including a financial cushion during the startup period when your business will not earn substantial income.

How Much Risk Can You Assume?

Once you’ve reviewed your financials, you’ll understand what you can afford. Nonetheless, some franchise opportunities are riskier than others.

If you’re risk adverse, look for a well-established company with a long track record of franchising success. If you’re more willing to take chances, a cutting edge company could potentially offer higher returns, but you will assume substantially higher risk.

Request A Franchise Information Package

After going through the previous steps, you’ll have a list of potential franchisors and many questions too. Reach out to the franchisors and ask for a franchise information package.

They’ll provide you with information such as a company history, support and systems summary, pertinent media articles, their mission statement and vision, answers to frequently asked questions, statistical data, estimated startup costs, application information, and more.

Read through the documents carefully and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Franchise laws vary between regions. The Canadian Franchise Association maintains a current list of laws and legislative developments for each province and territory here. You should understand the requirements for your region.

Ask For Franchise Disclosure Documents

Once you’ve reviewed each Franchise Information Package, you’ll have a shorter list and much more to do. Franchisors are in the business of selling businesses and glossy brochures and slick presentations do not guarantee a good franchise or franchisor.

Your province or territory may not require the franchisor to provide you with a franchise disclosure documents (FDD). Nonetheless, a good franchisor provides them voluntarily and they should meet the minimum legal standards for your business location.

Good franchisors are proud of their accomplishments and not afraid of scrutiny. All CFA members are required to provide disclosure documents in all Canadian provinces and territories.

Comprehensive Franchise Disclosure Documents allow you to truly size up the operation and compare it to others.

Review the FDD

Seek assistance from a franchise attorney if you don’t understand anything within the documents and definitely before you sign a contract.

Areas of particular interest include whether the franchisor has been or is involved in any litigation such as a bankruptcy. Lawsuits can also indicate a flawed system or poor franchisor management.

Check the payments and revenue model carefully. It describes the initial franchise and ongoing royalty fees and whether you’ll pay for marketing and advertising. You’ll also find information regarding unit financial performance.

Rules and restrictions are extremely important. Franchisors impose these to ensure uniformity and to describe operational and reporting requirements, your sales area and your rights to terminate, resell, or renew your franchise.

Some franchise owners buy with the intention of business growth and equity so they can later flip it and turn a profit. Consider whether the franchise suits your goals and offers the growth potential and flexibility you need.

Talk To Franchisors

After reviewing the Franchise Disclosure Documents you will probably have a very short list. Talk to the franchisors in-person to get a sense of their management style and personality.

We also suggest you ask for the following information, even though the answers may be in their written material. Personal conversations give you a good idea of the franchisor’s management skills and how well they know and interact with their business:

  • What is your business background? Have you owned a small business?
  • How long have you run the franchise?
  • What is the experience of the management team?
  • Are you a member of the CFA?
  • How do you determine exclusive territories?
  • What are the franchisor’s plans for future development?
  • What kind of system, marketing, and advertising support and training do you provide to franchisees? Is it ongoing?
  • Have any franchisees failed? Why do you think they did?
  • How do you resolve conflict?
  • How do you choose franchisees? What skills and experience do they need to succeed?
  • Describe a typical franchise owner (age, gender, marital status, background).
  • Describe the typical day of a franchisee.
  • Would you be willing to share your business plan complete with your marketing strategy and financial projections?

The CFA starter kit offers many more questions beyond what we’ve provided here. The Globe and Mail suggests membership in the CFA is an essential factor when assessing a franchise. They are the only association of franchisors and service providers in the franchise industry in Canada and follow a strict Code of Ethics.

Ask about everything and anything that concerns you. Discussions help you judge what it would be like to work within the network and with the franchisor. Remember, you won’t experience the benefits of franchising unless the franchisor and network function well.

Talk to Franchisees

Once you’ve thoroughly vetted the franchisors, you’ll need to talk to the franchisees. Don’t waste their time as they have busy schedules.

Establish a rapport and let them know you’ve already researched the brand and want their valuable input. This makes them more likely to be forthcoming. Additionally, the franchisor may ask them what they think of you if you decide you want to invest.

Ask each franchisee whether they felt well-prepared to operate the business. Did the franchisor provide in-depth training and support during the startup process? If so, that’s a very positive sign the franchisor cares about franchisee success.

Also ask them about any difficulties they’ve encountered. Did the franchisor handle issues tactfully and for the benefit of the network? What do you think the franchisor might have done differently?

Don’t shy away from financial questions. Franchisees understand the true cost of operating a franchise and how soon you might expect to start earning money. They can also clue you into how long it took them to earn decent income. Of course, these are only estimates since every area varies as does the business savvy and determination of the owner.

Always weigh their comments carefully and follow your gut instincts. A good franchise network includes like-minded individuals working hard to achieve common and franchise goals. Adding another great franchisee to the network benefits them too so they should offer honest advice and accurate information.

Ask the franchisee if it is possible to spend a day with them to see how they spend their time. Meeting a person face-to-face is a great way to build a relationship and to see first-hand how they create success. If possible, visit several franchisees near you to get a broader picture of operations and how they may differ.

You’ll also want to understand how the franchisee perceives the franchisor’s management style. Do they listen to network members and adopt worthwhile suggestions? Or are they top-down managers that dictate the direction of the company and ignore member feedback?

Finally, ask the franchisees whether they feel they get value from the fees they pay. The advantages of networking include avoiding expensive mistakes and tapping into a track record of success. Consequently, the franchisor must provide you with training, support, and a proven business model to create success and outweigh these costs.

Further Research

Besides investigating potential franchisors, you’ll want to check out the industry, competition, and any failures in your area. Statistics Canada provides data based on the industry or the NAICS code.

A simple Google search is the easiest way to find competitors in your area. If you discover someone tried a similar business but failed, try to discover why. Nearby businesses and even competitors can often provide information about work quality, business practices, financial strains, and reputation that led to their demise.

Buy Your Boat & Start Fishing!

Once you’ve done your research, you’ve probably identified a clear leader. The only thing left to do is to start the application process to discover whether the franchisor feels you’re a good match too.

If you’ve done your due diligence and discussed the opportunity with the franchisor and franchisees, this is usually a formality. You and your franchisor become partners for the mutual benefit of growing the business.

You’ll pay the appropriate fees and the franchisor prepares the documents which you’ll review with a franchise attorney. The franchisor then starts the training process so you can start fishing and reel in customers.


Postcard Portables has franchise opportunities throughout Canada. It is simple to get started operating your home-based business.

Our highly-respected brand and franchise network offers unlimited growth potential for a low investment amount. Ask yourself: Are you ready to get off the dock and into your own boat? If so, contact us – we’re always happy to help.

Financial Freedom is Better than Exercise

Estimated Reading Time: 8 minutes, 30 seconds.

Think about it. Financial freedom and exercise have a lot in common. They both can give you flexibility, reduce stress, and make you feel great.  When you exercise, you reap all the benefits. The same can be said for achieving financial freedom through entrepreneurship.

The benefits of entrepreneurship include retaining your profits, making your own decisions, and deciding how and when to spend your energy. Successful entrepreneurs do enjoy a better work/life balance. While not everyone likes to exercise, entrepreneurship also isn’t for everyone.

If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, a franchise can be a great option. It reduces risk, offers guidance while you build your business, and relies on an established, proven business model. Even better, the financial freedom that comes from franchise ownership feels even better than exercise so ask yourself these 15 questions. They should help you better understand whether you’re financially and mentally prepared to own a franchise business.

Financial Freedom Postcard Portables

1.  Are You A Visionary?

Creating a successful business involves more than performing day-to-day tasks. You must also be able to see where you want to be in a week, month, and year down the road.

Ultimately, you want financial freedom so you need to be a person who can recognize and seize opportunities, continually innovate, and constantly adapt.

2.  Are You Driven To Succeed?

If you choose to operate a franchise, you need motivation and the willingness to put in the time and effort necessary to make your new business grow. You won’t follow orders from a boss, because you’re the one giving them through the good and bad times.

It also means you can’t ignore paperwork and finances and you’ll need solid organizational skills for success. You will have days where you might feel like giving up, but entrepreneurs don’t. They’re driven by an internal desire to succeed, even in the face of adversity.

3.  Do You Thrive On Challenge?

When you work for yourself, you set the goals and if you want to succeed you can’t sit back and hope things will happen. Every day you’ll face new challenges so ask yourself whether you’re a person that can face them constantly and look forward to even more.

Some people prefer the predictability of regular work and new challenges make them feel insecure and fearful. Entrepreneurs blaze through them, revel in their successes, and learn from their failures.

Financial Freedom Postcard Portables

4.  Are You Willing To Wear Many Hats?

Successful entrepreneurs perform many business functions themselves, so they must be willing to learn. While the franchisor does provide a system, you’ll still need to learn business basics for day-to-day operations such as budgeting, bookkeeping, marketing, IT, sales, and more.

It doesn’t matter which business type you choose – you need to know how to sell yourself, your products, and your services. If you decide on a franchise, they provide you with a business blueprint, but you still need to find your customers and sell them what you offer.

Even if selling doesn’t come naturally to you, you can learn. Nonetheless, you can’t expect to create financial freedom by sitting back waiting for people to come to you. Some business models cater more to business instead of directly to consumers, but you still need to actively and continually generate sales and grow your business.

As the franchise owner, you also have full financial responsibility for your business operations. This includes investing your initial capital and budgeting for ongoing expenses.

Even if crunching numbers isn’t something you enjoy, you definitely need to manage your money and especially during startup when money management is so crucial.

5.  Are You Willing To Work Hard?

We all hear the inspiring stories of famous entrepreneurs. They started out with nothing and now enjoy incredible success. However, the one element many of these stories ignore is the years of hard work and dedication they put into their businesses before they achieved their dreams.

Achieving financial freedom through entrepreneurship does take hard work. You need to work as long as it takes to get the work done. Even if you’d rather be at home, you may need to complete orders, catch up on paperwork, organize marketing efforts, or become familiar with a new trend, product, or service. If you’re a person who finds great satisfaction in seeing the results of your work, entrepreneurship could be for you.

6.  Are You Ready For A Long-Term Commitment?

Famous entrepreneurs will tell you long-term commitment is a vital component of success. If you’re expecting your business to magically generate income quickly, entrepreneurship probably isn’t for you.

You need to commit to running your business for at least several years, but even more if you want to create a lasting legacy. Financial freedom is the result of measured steps and forward thinking.

Financial Freedom Postcard Portables

7.  Can You Handle Failure?

No wants to fail, but it’s impossible to avoid when you run a business. You might lose a great customer, fail to collect money, pay too much for goods or services, or miss your sales targets.

However, the difference between a successful entrepreneur and a failure is whether you learn from your mistakes and move on, or not. Not everyone rebounds quickly, but it’s an essential quality when you run a business. You don’t have time to wallow in self-pity.

8.  Can You Handle Isolation?

If you leave your existing job and start a franchise you’ll lose the daily contact with co-workers, and that’s not always easy. Initially, you won’t share your workplace with others and some people thrive on this stimulation.

Additionally, you won’t have anyone readily available to provide you with feedback. As a result, you’ll need people you can rely on for their candor and wisdom such as peers or business mentors.

9.  Do You Communicate Well With Others?

When you run your own business good people skills are essential. You’ll need to communicate with your franchisor, suppliers, customers, peers, and employees.

Ask yourself whether you have or are willing to learn the communicative and interpersonal skills you need to deliver the best possible service and motivate others.

10.  What Is Your Risk Tolerance?

Starting a business from scratch does allow you do things your own way, but it also involves significant risk. Alternatively, franchising limits many of your risks since it relies on a tested system, products, and services. Plus the franchisor provides training and guidance as you build your business.

Ask yourself whether you’re willing to risk all for a new venture or if limited risk exposure appeals to you more. Obviously you need to thoroughly investigate all potential businesses, but investigating a franchise opportunity is usually much simpler. A good franchisor willingly reveals financials, discusses market opportunities, and answers your specific questions.

11.  Do You Need Work Flexibility?

Many people working in regular jobs want to start their own business since they need more flexibility in their lives. If you’re starting a business from scratch, that can be difficult to achieve.

However, many franchise businesses start as a home-based business so you can put in the needed hours and still take your kids to the dentist or step out to watch their concert or soccer match. You may need to work later, but you’ll still be there for them when they need you.

Financial Freedom Postcard Portables

12.  Do You Have Your Partner’s Support?

If you’re considering investing in a franchise, it is very important your partner’s onboard. Initially, running your own business can demand plenty of time, energy, and money which may impact family and social activities.

Discuss the idea with your partner and ensure you’re in complete agreement. They’re the ones that will pick up the slack while you’re building your business. Also consider whether your children are ready to handle change.

Friends can also offer their candid opinions about your emotional, mental, and physical suitability for entrepreneurship. They can point out your strengths and weaknesses, but it’s up to you to decide whether you’re willing to do what it takes to overcome your shortcomings.

13.  Do You Have The Financial Resources?

Buying a franchise includes an initial investment, but you’ll also need sufficient resources to pay your bills while you build your business. Prepare a balance sheet of assets, liabilities, cash, and a detailed budget of expenses.

Plan for a year of savings so you have ample time before it is crucial you generate substantial revenue. If your partner will continue working while you build your business this will definitely lighten the load. However, you should also source possible sources for additional funding such as a bank loan, family members, or friends.

Don’t invest in a business unless you have ample resources. You’ll always have expenses you didn’t expect and you don’t need additional stress during a time of significant change.

14.  Can You Cope With Income Fluctuations?

When you start a business, you hope to gradually increase your sales and increase your income. However, most new businesses usually have lean months and months when you do well. This income fluctuation can lead some business owners to overspend when the money comes in, instead of budgeting for less profitable times.

If you have a tough time restraining your spending or you can’t imagine months where you earn little, entrepreneurship might not suit you. However, if you’re a person who’s persistent and can manage the initial income inconsistency, it’s well-worth it.

You’ll enjoy unlimited growth opportunities and the potential for much more income than you could ever earn working for someone else.

15.  Are You Willing To Follow An Established Business Model?

If you want to start your own business, you may want to run every aspect of it your own way. However, this also means you need to create the products and services and that takes plenty of time and money. Plus, even if you do extensive research you don’t know whether they’ll work in the actual market.

Alternatively, when you buy a franchise, you work within the franchisor’s business model. They have a brand and a predetermined concept and a proven business model.

They’ve already developed the products and services used by other franchisees. This significantly reduces risk since you can see how they actually perform, ask vital questions, and learn from their experiences.

The franchisor develops the policies and procedures, so you must be comfortable with following someone else’s lead. Fortunately, this doesn’t mean your franchisor ignores what you have a say.

A good franchisor listens to the concerns of the franchisees to improve overall success. After all, when you succeed the franchise succeeds too. Nonetheless, the franchisor decides what is best for the entire network’s success, not the individual owner.

Obviously, it’s important you align yourself with the best franchise network for business success. The franchisor should offer quality products and services, a great reputation with industry-recognized awards, extensive training, access to other franchisees, and a user-friendly reporting system.


If you think you’ve got what it takes to become an entrepreneur, Postcard Portables has franchise opportunities throughout Canada. The merits of entrepreneurship with Postcard Portables include operating a home- based business.

Our highly-respected brand and franchise network offers unlimited growth potential for a low investment amount. Ask yourself: Are you ready to make a mark in your community and have the work/life balance you deserve? If so, then it’s time to sign. Contact us to learn more.

Successful Entrepreneurs Tell All

Estimated Reading Time: 9 minutes 30 seconds.

Successful entrepreneurs aren’t born overnight. Their success stems from a particular mindset, initiative, and hard work.

These successful entrepreneurs have already proven they have what it takes to make dreams become reality. Each attained financial freedom, built a business they love, and they’re willing to share what they’ve learned. Their entrepreneur quotes provide a glimpse into their mindset and why they’ve done so well.

If you’re considering entrepreneurship, discover whether you think similarly to these successful entrepreneurs and why other entrepreneurial characteristics are so important. You could be your own boss and run a successful business too.

Photo of Marcus Gillam courtesy of Canadian Business

Marcus Gillam’s name isn’t as well-known as other famous Canadian entrepreneurs, but it will be soon. He’s only 43-years old and his company, the Gillam Group, received the number one ranking in construction in 2018 on the Profit 500 list of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies.

Gillam became a successful entrepreneur when he identified a need in the construction market. He doggedly pursued the market between smaller, local firms and large, highly-integrated construction companies. He also takes on projects others shy away from when they believe they’re too complicated or their budgets and timelines are too demanding.

His first major project defined his company. Gillam said, “I immersed myself in the management of this project to ensure the outcome was consistent with my expectations. This approach was time-consuming and it certainly came at the expense of short-term growth.”

However, his sensitivity to community needs, perseverance, and long-term vision paid off. Founded in 2011, his company’s revenue grew more than 29,000% over the following years with revenues doubling every year for the first three years.

While his company’s not as well-known like EllisDon, PCL, and Hatch, he’s driven, focused, and always strives to finish projects on-time and on-budget. The Gillam Group generated between $50 and $100 million in revenues in 2017 alone.

Gillam knows you have to do what it takes to make clients happy. He wants clients to rely on his company as a trusted adviser and employs a “partnership model”. This may include sharing offices with clients when necessary. The company also tailors their accounting and operational practices to the client’s preferences.

Perhaps more importantly, Gillam isn’t afraid to think outside of the box. He persistently looks for solutions and adapts, but always considers the client first. This obviously resonates with clients, since a sizable chunk of his work comes from repeat business and word-of-mouth.

Photo of Dani Reiss courtesy of Canadian Business

The Canada Goose company under Dani Reiss began in 2001. Their signature functional parka sold online and through luxury retailers, primarily to markets outside of Canada.

Selling clothing is risky business, but especially in retail. Many well-known retailers such as Danier Leather, Laura, Jacob, and Smart Set aren’t around today. Increased pressure from online sales and globalization actually led to a 1.1 percent drop in sales in 2018, according to Statistics Canada. Even in the best years, it’s difficult to succeed.

Many clothing manufacturers drop by the wayside too. Levis’ manufacturing plants closed. The John Forsyth Shirt Co. and others just couldn’t compete. It’s not an industry for the faint of heart.

Compare that to the success of Canada Goose. Their revenue increased 393% over the past five years. Today, they have retail locations in Canada, the US, London and Tokyo with another 20 planned to open by 2020. They now sell hundreds of jacket styles, outerwear, and accessories.

Dani Reiss claims the reason for their success is functionality and quality. Reiss refused to outsource production to Asia to increase profit margins while sacrificing quality. Instead, Reiss launched sewing schools to train and employ Canadians and to protect their asset.

“We have a great legacy of craftsmanship, of being made here in Canada, and we felt that was an asset worth protecting.” Marketing their product with our country’s name in their brand and making the product within our borders are two powerful reasons many people pay more. They trust the brand, because they know it consistently offers quality.

Instead of going head-to-head with big retailers like Walmart with their own brands and cheap prices, Reiss tapped into a niche with consumers who wanted more than fast fashion. They were, and are still willing to pay for quality-made garments.

Hunter Amenities logo courtesy of www.hunteramenities.com

Hunter Amenities International Ltd. is a privately-owned company selected as one of Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies in Deloitte’s leading business awards program.

This Burlington business began when John Hunter decided to make mouthwash for vending machines while attending university. He had little money and his mother tried to promote his vending machines, but no one was buying during the 80’s recession.

Hunter spotted an opportunity when he noticed hotels wanted to supply their customers with amenities, other than just a bar of soap. Despite his vending machine failure, Hunter rented a small space and filled bottles with mouthwash. He landed his first customer- Canadian Pacific Hotels.

Hunter recalls, “We just started out kind of doing anything we could to survive.” He realized it wasn’t about the products he thought he should sell, but what the customer wanted and needed.

Hunter is an innovator and ninety percent of the company’s products are custom-made for each client. The company launches about 25 new products annually, whereas the competition might release one. They also do everything in-house, from formulation to packaging.

By the early 90’s, he’d expanded his company into the U.S. Today, the company has plants in China, Singapore, and Malaysia, and nine distribution points within Asia and the Middle East.

Their success is even more incredible, since they’re up against U.S. competition and a 30 percent difference in currency. They’ve had to aggressively pursue new markets and add resources to compensate for their currency disadvantage.

“When everyone else is saying there’s a horrible recession out there, we’ve been saying we’re growing,” said Hunter. “We’ve been lucky where we just didn’t stagnate and kind of turtle shell and wait for things to get better, because they never will if you don’t go out and go after it.”

His resilient entrepreneurial spirit and dedication to turnkey solutions for clients are clearly factors in his success.

Photo of Stuart Lombard courtesy of www.ecobee.com

Stuart Lombard built a foldable canoe at 12-years of age and carried it around in his briefcase. His need to innovate led him to engineering studies in college, but when he graduated he didn’t know what to do.

He took a job with CAE Electronics in Montreal and worked his way up through the ranks. Unfortunately, he also had the worst boss ever.

Nonetheless, Lombard looked at it as a blessing. It was a turning point in his life. He realized he could combine his passion for safeguarding the environment with engineering and business, and he had a very good idea how he could do it.

Lombard recognized people spend plenty of money on heating and cooling their houses, but most thermostats were still the same as they’d been for decades. They weren’t “smart” or mobile-accessible. Lombard launched ecobee in 2007 so users could control their thermostat via their phone and save money.

Today, ecobee has a 35 percent share of the smart thermostat market. Buyers see the value since they can save around 23 percent on their heating and cooling bills annually, which pays for the unit quickly.

Their latest unit works with Alexa. Other units operate with Apple, IFTTT, Google, and Samsung since ecobee collaborated with them on the design. They sell their devices on Amazon and in retail stores such as Home Depot, Lowe’s, Best Buy, and more.

The company has secured substantial funding from the Amazon Alexa fund and Lombard won the prestigious EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2018 Ontario for Technology/Cleantech. The company has also partnered with the Canadian government and power utility companies to install smart thermostats, sometimes for free.

The company highly values customer opinions. It’s all about making precisely what the customer needs and delivering a great customer experience.

Photo of Christian Chia courtesy of www.openroadautogroup.com

OpenRoad is the largest auto retailer in BC with 23 dealerships and 3 collision centres. Their CEO, Christian Chia, is a well-known innovator with great passion for anything automotive.

His education was in finance, but he found it boring. He realized he didn’t want to be the person arranging financing for business – he wanted to be the one using the capital.

He left finance and went to work at Toyota. He describes his position as “the lowest of the low.” He had to fight to get business cards, but he had no title. However, his training included hard work in their factory and he learned strong values such as putting the customer and dealer before the manufacturer. He says many of the lessons he learned are now part of his DNA.

Chia led the way when he centralized the back office of his retail car business, unusual for the time. He maintained one location with accounting, HR, and marketing and then dealerships tapped into the services as they needed them.

The company also had a solid growth strategy, because Chia believed size and scale provided more marketing and training opportunities so they could remain on the leading edge of automotive retail.

He still contends you don’t need a particular educational profile or specific experience to do well in his industry either. “You need to want to be an automotive professional – you want to be the very best in the industry, and in the field of expertise you have.”

Chia believes teamwork is vital to success too. He states, “I always want to build the team. Our industry is hypercompetitive. It’s a small, low-margin, high-volume business. We’re a competitive organization. We like to win, but I believe we have a shared ownership of those sales targets, of those customer satisfaction targets. I subscribe to the definition of a CEO being a communicator of that vision, of that strategy”.

He says, “Passion is still at the root and heart of who we are as an organization. In essence, we are a franchise business. We need to differentiate ourselves in other ways, and for us that difference is the service and purchase experience.”

The automotive mogul doesn’t fool himself about the possibility of disruption to his business model either. Ride-sharing, autonomous vehicles, and other advances could shake up the centuries old franchise model. However, he sees technology as a potential way to collaborate, rather than a barrier.

His latest venture, PORTFOLIO, provides an affordable way for car enthusiasts to get behind the wheel of four luxury brands per month including Porsche, Land Rover, Jaguar, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Genesis, Infiniti and Audi and all for a flat monthly fee. Users access the program through an application-based subscription service on their smartphone. Obviously, Chia continues to innovate and his passion still drives his business.

EY also recognized his innovation, customer service, and teamwork strategies when they awarded him with Entrepreneur of the Year award for Business to Consumer excellence in the Pacific area.


You’ve read what these successful entrepreneurs say it takes to achieve success. If you’re itching to become an entrepreneur, Postcard Portables has franchise opportunities throughout Canada. It is simple to get started operating your home- based business.

Our highly-respected brand and franchise network offers unlimited growth potential for a low investment amount. Ask yourself: Are you ready to make a mark in your community and have the work/life balance you deserve? If so, then it’s time to sign. Contact us to learn more.

Entrepreneur Quotes We Should All Live By

Estimated Reading Time: 9 minutes 36 seconds.

Do you desire financial freedom and a great work/life balance? Entrepreneur quotes from successful entrepreneurs can help you understand what it takes to create a life and business you love.


Imagine for a moment that your life is an empty canvas. You hold the brush and the power to paint your life any way you like. What would your work of art look like? Becoming an entrepreneur isn’t easy. Entrepreneurship has unique challenges which requires unique attributes, but it also offers countless benefits. Let’s look at entrepreneur quotes that help you visualize whether you can see yourself following these entrepreneurs’ lead, as well as teach you some strokes to create your own masterpiece.

Farrah Gray started selling handmade lotion and painted rocks door-to-door at age six to help his struggling parents. At age seven, he carried business cards reading “21st Century CEO.”

At the same age, he told a teacher he was going to be a millionaire entrepreneur. She said, “No you’re not. You’re poor and your family’s poor. You’d better find someone to go work for,” and pointed towards McDonald’s.

Fortunately, his grandmother told him if you believe in yourself, you can accomplish anything. Ask yourself, “Why not me?” He ignored his teacher’s criticism, recognized he was good at what he did, and by 14-years old he was a self-made millionaire.

He’s now a motivational speaker and repeatedly states we all have dreams and seeds of greatness, but you must act to make them grow. Show up, pursue opportunities with a vengeance, and don’t wait for it to knock on the door. Find mentors, surround yourself with good people, and go after your dreams.

Walt Disney originally animated for advertising, but found advertising unfulfilling. His passion was for putting pen to paper to create an escape from the negativity of the world. He wanted to create a beautiful, entertaining environment instead.

He converted his garage into a studio, borrowed equipment, and made animated shorts. However, local theaters didn’t want to show them. He had no money so he moved into his office and ate cold beans- definitely not the happiest place on earth!

He partnered with his brother, but had his first successful creation stolen. No one believed in his vision for Disneyland either and thought it would be a spectacular failure.

“I couldn’t get anybody to go along with me. But I kept working on it and I worked on it with my own money.” He even hocked his life insurance to make it become a reality.

Disney continually innovated, worked long hours, and nurtured his business. He also pioneered branding and merchandising which accounts for 25 percent of Disney’s revenues today.

Disney’s success proves dreams alone aren’t enough. You need to turn those dreams into actions to make them a reality.

Andrew Carnegie came from humble roots, but that didn’t stop him from dreaming big. He worked as a bobbin boy in a cotton factory at thirteen-years old, taught himself to operate a telegraph, and was the superintendent of the Pennsylvania Railroad Company’s western regional office before he was twenty-five. By thirty he’d set off on his own, worked in steel, and later became an industry magnate worth a fortune.

However, Carnegie’s legacy isn’t about wealth. It’s about the importance of valuing life. His lifelong focus was on family, helping others, education, and social justice demonstrating that success is far more than earning money.

Running your own business is about generating resources to do what you want so that you can champion what you honour and value.

Steve Jobs’ name has become synonymous with entrepreneurial success. His early interest in electronics and gadgetry led to an internship at Hewlett-Packard, where he met his future partner, Steve Wozniak.

Wozniak was an engineer and he’d built a small computer, but Jobs had a vision – get small computers in the hands of everyday people. At twenty-years old, the two sold everything they owned and set up shop in Jobs’ parents’ garage and Apple Computer was born.

Apple eventually ousted Jobs, and sales plummeted. The organization lacked his vision, drive, and pioneering spirit. When Jobs returned, his passion and innovation rejuvenated the company. Today, Apple Computer is worth almost $1 trillion.

Steve Jobs demonstrates vision and passion are essential qualities for business success and longevity. They’re what keep you going when times get tough and lead to innovation.

Mr. Hill certainly demonstrated his passion for learning through formal education and experience. He was a reporter, studied law, started an automobile college and an institute of advertising, and published several magazines.

He interviewed many of the most influential people of his time and summarized their secrets of success in a book. He also wrote one of the 10 best-selling self-help books of all time. He pursued mentors and continually sought knowledge.

Self-education and personal growth are essential qualities for any entrepreneur. They need to continually learn to stay on top of new trends and technologies to remain relevant.

You don’t necessarily need to set foot in a classroom to learn either. Online classes, seminars, books, blogs, and meeting leaders are great ways to expand your knowledge.

Dharmesh and his partner met at MIT. They founded Hubspot when they realized people no longer responded to marketing and sales intrusions, and traditional tactics. Customers felt they were impersonal and irritating, not helpful.

They decided Hubspot would humanize the marketing and sales process and help people instead. By providing high-quality materials and services, people were more likely to connect and buy. Their revenues were $255,000 in 2007. Their estimated revenues for 2018 are $496.8 million.

These results show entrepreneurs must focus on the customer first; not on themselves or their business. The rest falls into place when you provide customers with what they need.

If anyone had a reason to be pessimistic about life, it was Ziglar. He was born one of twelve children, died nine days later, and then came back to life in his grandmother’s arms. His father and sister passed away five years later and his mom raised the huge family alone.

He tried college, dropped out, and had an inferiority complex. He entered sales, did well, and later wrote a book. Thirty publishing houses rejected it, but he remained hopeful. Finally, the thirty-first said, “Yes”.

His positivity in the face of adversity led to a fulfilling career of empowering others to succeed in their professional and personal lives. He published countless best-sellers and touched millions of people’s lives.

We can all learn from Ziglar’s positive outlook. Stay positive no matter what life throws at you and you will eventually succeed in business and in life.

Thomas Edison only went to school for a few months, but his mother taught him the basics. However, he continually read scientific and technical books, and taught himself to operate a telegraph. By sixteen, he was a telegraph operator and travelled extensively.

His first invention was a failure and he worked for ten years before he achieved commercial success. After that, he lost all his investment money on his latest invention since it never took off commercially.

Despite the setback, he continued on with more promising ventures. He became an industrialist and eventually an icon of ingenuity credited with 1,093 inventions.

It’s clear, any entrepreneur must be willing to carry on and innovate if they want to achieve success in business. Perseverance leads to success.

Spanos started working in his father’s bakery at eight-years old. In his teens, he borrowed money to buy an old truck and sold sandwiches to migrant workers. He worked by himself for long hours.

By the time he was 32, he’d made his first million. He’d learned the ins and outs of business through hard work and experience. He continued to build his fortune by investing in real estate and building apartments, but he remained a hands-on operator throughout his life.

Spanos demonstrates you must work hard and dedicate yourself to your dream. No one achieves instant success – it takes sweat equity. Start small, build a strong foundation, and then expand the structure. You reap the benefits of your hard work, so it’s well-worth your effort.

Robbins’ home life as a child was not rosy. His parents divorced and his mother was drug and alcohol dependent. Robbins cared for his siblings and the home. Eventually, his mother chased him out of the house with a knife.

By 17, he was out of high school and working as a janitor for $40 a week. He wanted to attend college for a sports journalism degree. However, he looked at his situation as a setback, not a dead end.

He saved up $35, attended a motivational seminar, asked the speaker for a job, and was hired. Robbins worked long hours, but wasn’t seeing results. His boss and mentor told Robbins to focus on building a skillset so he could offer more value.

He took his advice and started to build a brand, but a partner stuck him with a $150 million bill. He also divorced his wife after 14 years. Despite these setbacks, Robbins carried on and learned from the experience.

“I’ve come to believe that all my past failure and frustration was actually laying the foundation for the understandings that have created the new level of living I now enjoy.” His challenges and experiences helped him learn and grow.

Clearly, discovering how to overcome problems is an important characteristic of any successful entrepreneur.

Canada’s enduring hockey legend is also a very successful entrepreneur. The Great One not only smashed countless league records, he continues to win in the business world long after retirement.

What’s behind his success? With 60 league records, including an incredible number of assists, it’s clear he doesn’t hog the puck. He believes in teamwork, and empowers those around him to achieve more.

It’s well-documented that his dad and Gordie Howe inspired him throughout his life. He’s always relied on mentors. He learned, “One person doesn’t make the game – it takes everyone. When you work together, you can accomplish great things.”

Today, he continues to collaborate with others and runs hockey camps in Canada, the United States and China, since they’ll host the 2022 Olympics in Beijing. His net worth is $200 million.


These successful entrepreneurs offer insights into a few of the attributes you need for business success. If you want to know more, read our Q & A post “What Are Entrepreneurial Characteristics”.

How will you paint your story? If you’re considering entrepreneurship, Postcard Portables has franchise opportunities throughout Canada. It is simple to get started operating your home- based business.

Our highly-respected brand and franchise network offers unlimited growth potential for a low investment amount. Ask yourself: Are you ready to make a mark in your community and have the work/life balance you deserve? If so, then it’s time to sign. Contact us to learn more.

What Are Entrepreneurship Characteristics? – Q&A

Estimated Read Time: 9 minutes.

What are entrepreneurship characteristics? It’s a pertinent question when you’re considering self-employment. It’s natural to want to know if you have what it takes before you move forward.

Ask yourself these 14 important questions to discover whether you have the best characteristics needed for successful entrepreneurship.


1. Are You A Visionary?

A primary difference between an employee and an entrepreneur is motivation. Some people are perfectly happy doing the same job and collecting the same pay cheque until retirement. They find the consistency comforting, but for others it’s not enough.

What are entrepreneurship characteristics of a visionary? An important component is that these entrepreneurs are motivated by opportunity. They see new or better ways of doing things and won’t settle for the status quo if it ignores a gap in the marketplace or performs less than optimally.

This drive for innovation and change can get them in hot water in a traditional job, since their bosses may misinterpret their ideas as criticism. Entrepreneurs are often outspoken, opinionated, and demanding, which can be a thorn in the side of management.

Entrepreneurs strive for improvement and spot opportunities. They can’t understand when others don’t see their vision and they crave success in many ways, including a better work/life balance. They’re goal-setters always trying to reach higher towards a more prosperous, fulfilling future.

Steve Jobs Quote

2. Are You Satisfied By Your Hard Work?

Many people work for others, because it’s the usual way things are done. You apply for work based on your experience, education, and training and once hired you do the tasks your employer assigns you. In return, you collect a pay cheque and can hopefully enjoy time away from the workplace.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work that way. Many employees work hard, but never have the time off they should and their home life suffers. Others work hard and don’t see the financial return they should. Still others work hard, but their efforts go unnoticed or the company changes directions and they feel they’ve wasted their time.

Entrepreneurs do work hard – don’t kid yourself. The idea you can work four hours a week, travel the world, and create a better future isn’t very realistic. However, when you work hard for your business, you reap the benefits.

Your energy goes into growing your business, improving your lifestyle, and attaining financial freedom; not someone else’s. An entrepreneur’s hard work is very satisfying since they see the direct results.

3. Do You Thrive On Challenge?

Most of us have seen complacency in the workplace. Instead of addressing problems, people pass the buck and claim it isn’t their job. This can be frustrating if you’re trying to find a solution and it’s definitely very unproductive.

On the other hand, entrepreneurs thrive on challenge. They rise to the occasion and the challenge motivates them to work harder. Instead of seeing a problem as an insurmountable task, they stare adversity in the eye, ignore naysayers, and search for solutions.

Entrepreneurs tend to look at the glass half full, instead of half empty. That doesn’t mean they don’t experience setbacks and disappointments. Nonetheless, they constantly focus on their dream, move forward, and learn in the process. Challenge fuels their spirit to continually reach higher levels.

4. Are You Flexible?

Flexibility isn’t always expected when you work for someone else. Your employer outlines the job requirements and tells you what to do. Your boss probably isn’t going to ask you to do the books if you’re a salesman, or manage the office if you normally deal with customers.

On the other hand, entrepreneurship demands flexibility. You must be willing to do what it takes to complete tasks, lower expenditures, and increase revenues. If that means getting your hands dirty, so be it.

Most people start out as a solopreneur, since they don’t have the luxury of hiring support staff initially. Consequently, you need to wear many hats and learn many skills. If you’re a person who can’t handle change, entrepreneurship probably isn’t for you.

You may need to handle sales, bookkeeping, marketing, and more. When faced with an unfamiliar situation, you learn and adapt. A ready and willing attitude and flexibility are key components of entrepreneurial success.

5. Are You Resourceful?

When you work for someone else, you’re a cog in the wheel of their business. They need your skills and hard work to help them accomplish their goals. They usually don’t assign you tasks outside of your expertise, but when you’re an entrepreneur you need to be ready for anything. You need to be resourceful with what you have.

Tony Hsieh Quote

6. Are You Willing To Learn?

Many people work hard and get very good at their job. Later, they might occasionally take a course or attend a seminar because their company or title requires it.

What are entrepreneurship characteristics of highly successful business owners? They constantly self-educate since it keeps them relevant and competitive in a fast-moving marketplace. Forbes states lifelong learning is the fundamental key to successful entrepreneurship. It provides “access to a good life, both personally and professionally”.

Entrepreneurs rely on education to stay abreast of the latest trends, fine tune skills, and continually address the challenges that come their way.

7. Are You Willing To Take Chances?

When you work for someone else, they decide which risks could benefit the company. You may not agree with their decisions and in a worst-case scenario it could lead to you losing your job if you become redundant.

Alternatively, entrepreneurs decide on what risks they’re willing to take and which don’t suit their vision. They’re not afraid to act when they see a gap in the marketplace and they seize opportunities.

Barbara Corcoran of Shark Tank fame states it is people who think on their feet and act that find success, not those who spend time overanalyzing opportunities.

Wayne Gretzky Quote

8. Are You Tenacious?

When you work for someone else you may start a project, but someone else finishes it. You could also complete a small part of a large project and never understand the entire vision. You don’t have control of policies, procedures, or workflow either and the result may not affect you directly.

Conversely, entrepreneurs need tenacity to guide their business throughout the entire journey. They oversee all aspects of the work from start to finish and handle whatever comes their way in stride. They have natural drive and energy to accomplish goals, even when they face unpleasant situations.

Entrepreneurs have self-discipline. They make decisions and finish projects, despite obstacles. They persevere, because they know they will enjoy the fruits of their labour.

Steve Jobs Quote

9. Are You A Good Communicator?

Companies spend millions on marketing and hire sales personnel for a reason – to communicate their message. If you work for an established company, you may not need great communication skills for your position, but they’re a must as an entrepreneur.

You need to communicate with potential and existing customers, persuade people to buy your products and services, network with peers and businesses, and promote your business.

If you bring on staff, you must also communicate priorities, policies, and procedures so they understand your expectations.

10. Are You A Leader?

Many traditional jobs don’t require leadership skills, unless you’re in management. Even then, many managers don’t have the required skills and aren’t good leaders. It takes a particular temperament and skillset to lead well.

If you’re an entrepreneur and you don’t have the required skills, you’ll need to learn them. You must handle negative feedback and criticism gracefully and learn from your experiences.

Good leaders demonstrate patience and gratitude towards their customers, employees, vendors, partners, and peers. They’re confident, align themselves with mentors, and collaborate for business success.

11. Can You Overcome Failure?

Companies fail often, but their failures may not directly affect you. They could miss a sales projection, fail to meet a deadline, or lose a big customer. You stick to your work and hope they’ll manage their failures well.

Entrepreneurs must face their failures head on. Their ambition and need to succeed drives them to do whatever the business requires. That includes learning from their mistakes so they’re not repeated.

What are entrepreneurship characteristics for overcoming failure? Entrepreneurs stay focused on the big picture and recover from their failures quickly. Entrepreneurs can’t afford to wallow in self-pity for long. Instead, they pick themselves up and get it right the next time.

Michael Bloomberg Quote

12. Can You Handle Pressure & Isolation?

When you work in a traditional company you interact with people every day. Managers, co-workers, and business peers provide stimulation, support, and sometimes criticism. Typically, a highly-demanding workload is the exception, not the rule.

Initially, entrepreneurs don’t share their workplace with others, so they need to ask for feedback to measure their performance. Consequently, they need mentors, coaches, and peer support they can rely on. They must also listen to customer complaints, or their competitors will surpass them.

Entrepreneurs must remain flexible, instead of sticking to a single acceptable outcome. When you’re self-employed, you listen, learn, and adapt to feedback to ensure success.

13. Income or Financial Freedom?

Working for a traditional company includes regular pay cheques and the appearance of security. However, we all know that even high-level employees with years of service aren’t guaranteed they’ll keep their job today.

Nonetheless, many people cling to their 9-to-5 employment hoping it will continue to provide them with money until retirement so they can finally enjoy the good things life has to offer. They become more dependent on their employer as they have a family, buy a home and car, and incur debt. They build their life around their limited income.

Entrepreneurs strive for more since they see the benefits of unlimited growth potential and ultimate financial freedom. They build their business so it works with their life and aspirations.

If they need to work on a weekend so they can enjoy time with friends and family during the week, they have that option. If they want a vacation they don’t need permission. They just need to schedule their work.

William Arthur Ward Quote

14. Do You Want To Work For A Pension or Build A Legacy?

Many people work for years hoping they’ll get a pension so they’ll live comfortably during retirement. They also scrimp and save and hope to build equity so they can pass something on to their children.

When you build your own business you can build equity and leave a legacy for your children. They can partner with you, learn the business, and carry your vision forward.

Pensions end once you’re gone, but a business can provide for years and years. Will your children respect your efforts when you work for someone else for thirty or forty years? Or will they admire your creativity, fortitude, and hand-forged success when you start with an idea and make it a reality?


You’ve read what it takes to become an entrepreneur. If you think you fit the bill and you’re considering entrepreneurship, Postcard Portables has franchise opportunities throughout Canada. It is simple to get started operating your home- based business.

Our highly-respected brand and franchise network offers unlimited growth potential for a low investment amount. Ask yourself: Are you ready to make a mark in your community and have the work/life balance you deserve? If so, then it’s time to sign. Contact us to learn more.

Home-Based Business Benefits of Postcard Portables

A Postcard Portables franchise offers a major advantage over a brick-and-mortar business. You get to run your franchise from home. Here are some of the reasons you might want to consider a Postcard Portables home-based business franchise.

Reduced Risk

A home-based business requires a smaller cash outlay, plus it reduces your overhead and maintenance costs. Minimal expenses lead to more revenue and less initial investment risk.

Minimal Staffing

Most Postcard Portables franchises start with the franchise owner and another individual, minimizing payroll costs. Bring more people on as your business grows, instead of digging into your profits.

Tax Advantages

Having your home and office under one roof provides tax advantages. You can deduct a portion of your mortgage, property taxes, insurance, utilities, and maintenance. When your business grows you may want to consider an office and/or warehouse, but you’re not pressured to do so. You meet with clients at their location until your earnings justify dedicated space.

Superior Work/Life Balance

You set your own weekly schedule and don’t have to deal with office politics so it’s easy to focus on your work. Choose hours that suit your lifestyle and your customers’ needs. With less wasted time, you have more quality time to enjoy with friends and family. If you need to take your child to the dentist or a soccer game, tailor your schedule instead of constantly scrambling to fit these activities into your life.

Personal Growth

When you run a home-based business you wear many hats and learn many new skills. Plus you’re the boss, so you can align your business with your values. You also have unlimited potential for personal and business growth. You see the results of your efforts and enjoy the benefits.


If you’re considering entrepreneurship, Postcard Portables has franchise opportunities throughout Canada. It is simple to get started operating your home- based business. Our highly-respected brand and franchise network offers unlimited growth potential for a low investment amount. Ask yourself: Are you ready to make a mark in your community and have the work/life balance you deserve? If so, then it’s time to sign. Contact us to learn more.

Get More With A Low Investment Franchise Business

When considering a franchise, you want to keep costs to a minimum. You’re spending your assets to accumulate wealth, so the more you spend, the more you need to earn before seeing substantial growth.

A low investment franchise business is obviously attractive when considering entrepreneurship since you can recoup your investment quickly. You can grow your business, increase revenues, and substantially increase your assets faster.

Some franchise businesses are very costly with tight profit margins, and very high risk. Less expensive franchises often don’t represent a strong brand or offer limited potential. Others include high royalty fees, overhead, and hefty payroll expenses.

Postcard Portables offers a highly respected brand, unlimited growth potential, and a low investment amount. Your initial business involves one or two people, a storage facility and vehicle, and a home office.

Compared to our competitors, our franchise business opportunity costs considerably less. We offer high-quality products, a proven business model, top-notch training, and outstanding support.  Furthermore, an additional benefit of owning a Postcard Portables franchise is the opportunity for reoccurring revenue – the longer you rent a mini-billboard to a customer, the more money you make!

Postcard Portables offers value for your investment dollar so why pay more to start a profitable business?


If you’re considering entrepreneurship, Postcard Portables has franchise opportunities throughout Canada. It is simple to get started operating your home- based business. Our highly-respected brand and franchise network offers unlimited growth potential for a low investment amount. Ask yourself: Are you ready to make a mark in your community and have the work/life balance you deserve? If so, then it’s time to sign. Contact us to learn more.