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Atul
Pathak

I am a franchisee & this is my McDonald’s

After moving to the UK from India, I worked my way up through the hotel industry before I decided to become my own boss. I started a small hotel in Central London and took on two other franchise businesses but, even though I was successful, I didn’t feel valued. I thought long and hard about franchising with McDonald’s but decided being part of such a well-known, global family was a fantastic opportunity. And when I applied, I really wanted it.

‘Having done this for 13 years now, I can say the investment isn’t as big as it initially seemed. The rewards are definitely there for the earning.’

Support

Because it’s such a big brand, I was worried that becoming a McDonald’s franchisee could stifle my entrepreneurial spirit. But I shouldn’t have been. Over the 13 years I’ve been a franchisee McDonald’s haven’t just listened to my crazy ideas, they’ve encouraged them. The Big Mac® and Filet-O-Fish® were invented by franchisees like me, after all.

Compared to the other franchise businesses I’ve been involved with, the support from McDonald’s has been world class. There’s always someone to talk to. There’s always someone to help you. Plus you can call upon the different departments, like Marketing and Finance, at no extra cost – something you just can’t do as a small business owner.

A surprising opportunity

The biggest surprise for me was the length of the training – 9 months initially seemed like a long time. But having done it, I know that every single minute of it was worth it. Now, when I walk into any of my 26 restaurants, I can congratulate my employees if I see they’re doing well and roll up my sleeves and get stuck in if they need help. I may not be as fast or as good as they are, but they respect me for standing by their side. That’s an important part of any business.