Lisa’s Start in Franchising 

After attending fitness classes at a mom-and-pop gym in her neighborhood, Lisa’s entrepreneurial itch started to kick in. At the time she was working as a full-time dental hygienist, but after attending the fitness classes, she couldn’t shake the idea that the unique business model was filling a void in her community.

After toying with the idea for a while and even with zero background in fitness, Lisa took the challenge head-on and started her own “boutique gym” in 2001. At that point in time, the concept of the boutique gym- or even the term “boutique gym” itself- was still largely unknown. Not only did Lisa face the challenge of business ownership head-on, but she also helped spearhead an industry that has grown by leaps and bounds over the past two decades.

Lisa’s gym did extremely well so it was only natural that a few years later she decided to franchise the company. At the time, the world of franchising was completely new to Lisa, so she started conducting her research and learning as much as she could about the industry. Her ongoing research led her to network with other franchising professionals and attend conferences. One of the first conferences she attended as a Franchisor was for the Franchise Brokers Association (FBA).

As Lisa began to learn more about franchise consulting, she became very drawn to it, realizing that consulting would allow her to do what she loves- help people find success as business owners by drawing upon her own experiences, triumphs, and mistakes as an entrepreneur.

In 2016, Lisa officially sold her fitness company, and by 2017 she was fully immersed in being a franchise consultant, partnering with both FBA and the International Franchise Professionals Group (IFPG).

Franchise Consultant Lisa WelkoA Franchise Consultant Success Story 

Since selling her fitness company and becoming a Franchise Consultant, Lisa has helped over 100 individuals achieve their dream of business ownership. Not only has she helped people find the right business for them, but she has also helped steer people away when franchise opportunities didn’t seem like the best fit.  She notes, “I’ve helped way more people than I’ve placed. The responsibility of business ownership simply isn’t for everyone.” This mindset highlights the level of integrity with which Lisa runs her business and her life.

Integrity is what makes Lisa enjoy everything about being a franchise consultant! Her favorite part of her job is meeting a new client and seeing his or her potential as a business owner. She loves to help people take control of their lives so they can finally take off those golden handcuffs!

Lisa loves helping people find options they never thought about or industries they aren’t familiar with but that would be the perfect complement to their skillset. One of her favorite placements that she highlights was helping a woman whose previous career had been planning golf tournaments to start a senior care placement business.

For Lisa, the most rewarding part of being a franchise consultant doesn’t come from the initial placement or even the commission check- it comes when her clients check in with her one or two years later and share their success story, telling her that she truly helped them change their lives for the better!

No matter what Lisa does, she says her nature has always been to “learn about it and then be the best at it,” which has driven her to not only learn about franchise consulting and different brands but also the franchising industry in general as an active member of the International Franchise Association (IFA).

Lisa’s Tips For Franchise Consultants 

  1. Never Forget the Importance of Your Role: Never take your role as a franchise consultant lightly- you are working with someone to change their entire life and sometimes the lives of their family members. Remember that this is a serious business and never underestimate the long term effects for someone who is making this decision. Lisa mentions that the last thing she ever wants to do is make money from someone else’s failure- “consultants have to sleep at night too!” Here Lisa references her personal mission statement of “Make it fun but keep it serious.”
  2. Keep Learning: Lisa warns against keeping a shortlist of brands. She believes that as a franchise consultant you always need to be learning and keeping the portfolio of brands you work with open and dynamic. When she is looking for brands to present, Lisa primarily looks for concepts that have a strong management and support team- not necessarily large but singularly focused on the success of their Franchise Owners. She also likes working with brands that have partnered with development companies such as Raintree because they do the vetting for her and she knows it is a brand she can stand behind.
  3. Work for You Commissions: Lisa understands how important it is to connect deeply with her clients in order to truly understand what industries and brands would be a good fit. She says that by the time she hands a client over to the sales team they are already halfway there in terms of understanding the brand and wanting to commit.

Congratulations, Lisa for being Raintree’s August Consultant of the Month! We look forward to continuing to work with you as you bring such a genuine and ethical approach to the industry.