Add Some Compost

Posted by richardhunter-rice on January 8, 2018

In the last post, we talked about the first three of the 7 specific areas you need to consider in your franchise prototype process. Here are all seven again:

  • Primary Aim
  • Strategic Objectives
  • Organisational Strategy
  • Management Strategy
  • People Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Systems Strategy


These 7 areas will fine turn your plan for the ultimate level of success. Today we are going to cover the last four.

Think of constructing your business model like planting a tree. At first, it’s so small and weak you wonder if it will even make it through the night. But, you keep watering, fertilising and nurturing it. Your ideas will grow the trunk and each of these strategies will extend out as the branches of your now strong tree. Finding the perfect support staff, employees, vendors/suppliers and other relationships will make your tree flourish with leaves and flowers.

Management Strategy

The way you structure your management team is not only essential to your growth, but the happiness of your employees and, ultimately, your customers/clients. This strategy is results-oriented and doesn’t depend on the people, but the actual system that’s in place.

A management strategy is, in short, a set of standards that include goals, rules, a mission statement and other concrete things that tell your employees how to act, your management how to grow your business and your customers/clients what to expect.

These should all be in perfect alignment with your business goals.

Employee Appreciation

You need to put together a people strategy that shows your employees how you feel about their job performance and dedication to your business. They also need to understand “why” they are doing specific tasks. This helps them to personally connect to their job which in turn leads to better production and a happier workplace.

There are a number of strategies you can use to keep it interested in “the office”:

  • Performance Incentive Programs
  • Contests that reward high performance
  • Employee of the Month
  • Performance/Holiday Bonuses


These are just a few of the ideas you can use. One of the best ways to appreciate your employees is by calling a meeting and asking them how they would like to be rewarded. Think about it for awhile and put the best strategy into play. Keep it fresh and change up the strategy you use from time to time to keep your employees guessing. Once they get used to the prize, it’s time for a whole new approach.

You need to build a community within your company. There needs to be support, appreciation and respect. The more “at home” an employee feels, the better they will perform and the higher their level of loyalty.

Marketing Strategy

Marketing is, of course, essential to the success of any business, but it also must work cohesively with the other strategies you’re using. There are two major pillars of a successful marketing strategy-the demographic and psychographic profiles of your customers.

The psychographic tells you what your customers are the most likely to buy and the demographic tells you who they are, which can help you learn why they buy specific items. Without this information, it simply doesn’t matter how good your business prototype is.








Systems Strategy

There are three types of systems in every business:

  • Hard Systems
  • Soft Systems
  • Information Systems


Hard systems refer to inanimate system or systems that have no “life”. Soft systems are those that could be living. Information systems which are, of course, everything else, including customer data, product information, financial…anything with data and numbers.

The most important of all three systems is the soft systems because it includes the sales systems your business uses. In your sales system, the two keys to success are structure and substance. The structure is what you sell and substance is how you sell it.

All three systems are essential to the success of your business and while they all have their own very specific roles, they all must work together to get the job done. This also goes for your entire business development program.

I want to take a moment to recap on the ideas we went over through the business develop lessons.

An entrepreneurial myth, or e-myth, is an assumption that anyone can succeed at a business with:

  • Desire
  • Some capital
  • Projected a targeted profit


There are essentially three key roles that need to be filled to set your business up for success:

  • The Technician
  • The Manager
  • The Entrepreneur








The four different stages of a business life cycle are:

  • Infancy
  • Adolescence
  • Growing Pains
  • Maturity


There are a few things we are going to talk about:

  • Business Format Franchise
  • The Franchise Prototype
  • Franchise Prototype Standards


There are three main areas of business development:

  • Innovation
  • Quantification
  • Orchestration


7 specific areas you need to consider in your franchise prototype process. Here are all seven again:

  • Primary Aim
  • Strategic Objectives
  • Organisational Strategy
  • Management Strategy
  • People Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Systems Strategy


We can help you work through all of these areas and give your business a jumpstart that puts you ahead of your competition right from the start. Use our FREE test drive and work with us, plus gain access to a wealth of tools and resources. Send us an email at or call us on +44 121 286 6300.



“Snow Mageddon!”

Posted by richardhunter-rice on December 11, 2017

It will be very interesting to see what effect the latest snowfall in the UK has on business.  Will more businesses finally embrace home / remote working or will the majority of business owners enforce that everyone has to brave the elements, reduced public transport, and scary icy roads to be in the office to work their 9-5?


If more companies had an empowered approach to business and rather than micromanaging their employees – empowered them to work where ever they saw fit, productivity in the UK would soar and “blips” like the weather etc would have little to zero effect on business.

Leaders should focus more on the quality of the tasks completed and the time taken, than how many hours the employee works.

Would you prefer a team of people who can smash their tasks/projects within three days rather than five – or would you feel cheated as they “should have been at their desks for the additional two days?”

Modern productivity tools such as Evernote empower teams to work in total unison and aren’t dependent on the team to be sat in the same office. It wouldn’t matter if the team working on a project were all in different corners of the globe.  Just think how much more productive your team could be if they were all working different time zones?  Suddenly you could have 24 hours a day focus on your business…


My final thought on this and yes this comes from personal experience –

If people are managed in a certain way, then they will behave in a certain way.


“Richard Hunter-Rice is an Evernote Certified Consultant and offers productivity support to small business owners, for further details please go to: Evernote

Richard also runs Minerva Growth – the business works with small business owners and typically will triple the number of leads they get and dramatically increase profits.  To learn more:

Minerva Growth






The Corporate Puzzle

Posted by richardhunter-rice on September 26, 2017

The 7 specific areas you need to consider in your franchise prototype process:

  • Primary Aim
  • Strategic Objectives
  • Organisational Strategy
  • Management Strategy
  • People Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Systems Strategy







These 7 areas will fine-tune your plan for the ultimate level of success. In this blog, I will cover the first three.

Primary Aim

It’s essential in business development to set goals and see a vision for the future. This needs to go beyond the business and you need to think about what you want out of life in general. What do you dream about? How do you see your success unfolding? Knowing and understanding these things will give you the momentum to get started and the stamina to see it through.

Even take just a minute, & write them down and then tape them to your desk for a constant reminder of what you’re aiming for.

Strategic Objectives

These are essential in taking your business from surviving to thriving. All of these objectives should offer solutions for how to get to your primary aim. There are many things you can use to set strategic objectives, but here are a couple of the most popular that I see:

  1. Money: Setting monetary goals is a great, simple way to see how you are doing at any point in the game. It’s easy to measure and easy to find adjustments to help meet this goal.
  2. Worthy Opportunities: When considering partnerships and other business opportunities you need to think about whether or not they will help you reach your primary aim. Those that will are the best opportunities to seriously consider.

The key in setting standards and goals is not to limit you or stress yourself out. You need to find some quantifiable things you can use to measure your progress toward your primary aim. These are just two suggestions, but make sure no matter what standards you set, that you are paying attention to the detail, as these are one of the biggest keys to your success.







Organisational Strategy

The strength of your organizational structure can make or break your business, so it’s important to take the time to put together a solid structure for your business to grow from. Generally, a company is organised around the roles and responsibilities that need to be taken care of on a daily basis and the personalities that need to fulfil those roles.

No matter what roles and responsibilities you’ve defined for your employees, you must always keep your personal primary aim separate from your company’s primary aim or mission statement. Once you’ve identified the primary aim for your company it will be easy to set up a positioning structure that will work.

Don’t forget to put together position contracts. Your employees should sign a statement of their roles and responsibilities. This helps keep them clear for you, the employee and other employees/vendors or other individuals.

You can see how these areas all work together to build a solid structure on which to build your business. If you need help defining any of these areas, you can check out the resources, tools and speak with one of Minerva Growth’s fantastic coaches during your FREE test drive. Get in contact by calling us 0121 286 6300 or email at 

The Mortar Makes it all Happen

Posted by richardhunter-rice on September 19, 2017

Today I’m going to talk about the three keys to business development and how you can put the right bricks in place to build a solid foundation.






There are three main areas of business development:

  • Innovation
  • Quantification
  • Orchestration

If done well, these three areas will help you build a solid foundation for your business. So let’s talk about each one of these for just a minute.


Innovation should not be confused with creativity, which is the expression of ideas. Innovation is taking these ideas and putting them into action. This is where a large amount of your focus should be in the beginning and even throughout your business’ entire lifespan.


This, of course, refers to the numbers. We are talking about the value of your innovation. The best way to gauge this is by your customer response. Look to positive responses for what you are doing right and keep on doing it. Look to your negative responses to find out what you’re doing wrong and fix it. This will enable you to keep growing and progressing with the needs of your customers and business climate.


Once you’ve had a chance to find which areas are working, you can narrow down those areas and concentrate on making them the standout ideas. You shift your focus here to get the most out of your business and to meet the needs of your customers.

We can help you work through these three areas to put together your franchise prototype during your FREE test drive with Minerva Growth.

In the next few blogs

We are going to transition to the 7 specific areas you need to consider in your franchise prototype process:

  • Primary Aim
  • Strategic Objectives
  • Organizational Strategy
  • Management Strategy
  • People Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Systems Strategy


These 7 areas will fine turn your plan for the ultimate level of success.

Is Franchising Right For You?

Posted by richardhunter-rice on September 18, 2017

The biggest area of turn-key businesses is franchises. There is a franchise for every industry across the world, they are fairly easy to acquire and come with practically a “pop up” business of the box pre-assembled system. McDonald’s is a prime example that everyone knows, in fact, it is a $40 billion, 28,707 strong example. Huge.

So in this blog, I am going to talk about:

  • Business Format Franchise
  • The Franchise Prototype
  • Franchise Prototype Standards







Business Format Franchise

The business format franchise came from an earlier model which was called the “trade name” franchise. The big change was in the rights.

During the “trade name” days, the franchise owner only had marketing right’s, now franchise owners have owning rights to the entire business including all of their systems. This has allowed for a huge shift in focus,  to go from the quality and name recognition of the products carrying the business, to sales techniques that carry the business.

The Franchise Prototype

It was really the franchise prototypes that allowed for the changes to be made that help today’s franchises really stand out.  With the techniques developed by the owners, instead of the corporation.

This can and does make a very significant difference to the success of the franchise, as the owner can custom tailor their marketing and promotions – to the direct needs of their local target customers.






Franchise Prototype Standards

Now, the above being said – no one in their right mind would purchase a franchise if the parent company didn’t have a solid plan of action set up to ensure the success of the business. So, there are a few standards that are put into place that helps jump start the process of opening a successful franchise.

Build a model of prospective customers/clients, suppliers, creditors and employees who will consistently offer high quality work.

  1. Build a user-friendly model that can be used by individuals withany skill set.
  2. Build a defect-free model.
  3. Build a model with Operations / Standards Manuals.
  4. Build a model that will provide guaranteed & consistent results.
  5. Build a model that encompasses the same branding in colour, dress and facilities codes.


These are all ways the parent corporation makes sure their brand stays the same and in the front of the minds of customers. When you are purchasing a widely-known brand you will attract customers just for being you.

If you are considering purchasing a franchise, talk with Minerva Growth.  Our experienced business coaches will be able to take you through our no cost test drive.