Push play on the episode just above here.

I actually think I am pretty clever…

Well, sometimes.

Mailchimp (the email tool I use for franchise voices), sent me a summary of my email results for 2014 in mid January. A bit of an annual review..

The industry sector (consulting) that I fitted myself into in their system, has an “open rate” of across it’s emails of about 12%..

Me? franchise voices?

Well franchise voices newsletter emails, have an average of 55%! 55%…some going up to just under 80%..

I thought..that’s pretty interesting. I wonder why?

What have I been doing that might get that result? Maybe, its because there aren’t 10’s of thousands of people within that group. Could that be it?

No. I don’t believe it is.

What I believe it is, is that it’s the result of me working to follow a concept, which this episode’s interviewee calls the “first 7 words“.

Andrew O’Keefe is the Director of Hardwired Humans, and is also the author of a book of the same name.

About 18 months ago, I was given a copy of the book to read, and one of the key concepts I learned about was the “first 7 words” (among many nuggets of gold).

So I have been working to apply his thinking, and the discipline of using only 7 words in my email subject lines.


Because as Andrew explains, as humans, we are constantly classifying….constantly classifying the messages we take in and the environment around us.

What is it that we are looking for and why, when we are interpreting the messages around us?

And how could it relate to what you can implement when you’re communicating with customers, to have them open, and then act upon your message, or when you call, or when you’re face to face….

Andrew explains the key principles of the “first 7 words” in this episode of the podcast. Try his principles out next time you send an email to your customers. Take the time to select carefully before you push send…

Oh and I love the short tale at the end about the “jaw-dropping insights” on the Gorilla disciplinary process…

Like to add any thoughts on how you could put this concept to use in your business?

All comments welcome below!

If you want to know more about Andrew O’Keefe, here’s where you can find him:

website: www.hardwiredhumans.com

The book referenced in this episode: Hardwired Humans



Listen in on iTunes, or on Stitcher here to this episode.

In this episode of the podcast I talk with Paul Le Blanc, a franchisee with Fast Signs in Vancouver, Canada.

Paul shares many insights from his journey in franchising, from both before and during his tenure with Fast Signs, and we talk about the ups and downs of business ownership.

You’ll hear Paul talk about his recent months performance and also some historical stats from throughout his journey.

There’s a number of lessons he shares very well along the way, and we talks maths.

Doing the math, or maths (some colonial differences there we don’t get to the bottom of) and how often you do them in your business has featured a number of times in different episodes of the podcast (with Smart Franchise and Lisa Gissing).

In this episode we get inside Paul’s thinking and behaviours around the subject as a franchisee.

This was an enjoyable chat with Paul, I hope you enjoy it, and also soak up the insights he has shared. 


Listen in on iTunes, or on Stitcher here

When purchasing a franchise business, one of the key steps to get right in the process is Disclosure. 

As a prospective franchisee, knowing what to do with the Disclosure information when you receive it and knowing who to talk to, can help save you money and time in the short or long term.

So get close up to the details in the Disclosure Document and ignore the information provided within it at your peril!

What form does a franchise agreement need to be provided in during this period?

How long is the disclosure period itself?

Who should you be speaking to in the disclosure process?

How are you going to gain a view on the details of operation, to help you determine if you can see yourself involved in this business?

“Careful, inquisitive and thorough” a great description of a solid approach to the disclosure stage of the franchising process.

Ilya is the principal of FranchiseLegal, a nationwide franchise law firm, and has been providing Franchising Legal Advice to many franchisees and franchisors.

Tune in to this episode to hear the answers to the questions above, and to also hear more detail and recommendations from Ilya.

I’ve always loved a caffeine injection in the morning (a cup of coffee that is)

When I owned a cafe business a number of years ago, myself and my business partner would easily put away four coffees before midday, and rip into the lunchtime rush (customers that is).

I’ve often thought this was a great way to kick off the day!!!

We often reach for the coffee, for the tea, and often also for the soft drink or energy drink to kick us through a day, an overnight, or see us to the end of a shift..

What if actually there was something that you could be drinking more of, with more impact to improve remove your fatigue.

Operating a business is often an endurance effort.

John Toomey, The Fatigue Professor, talks with us on this episode of the podcast about the maths of hydration and what you can do to improve performance.

In this episode of the podcast I talk with Avon Collis. Avon is a reasonably new Gloria Jeans franchisee in Darwin.

A former member of the ADF, Avon did some significant diligence on his business purchase during the 6 month notice period he needed to provide for his exit.

I talked with Avon about the challenges upon entry to the business and questioned him about the challenges of operating a store very far flung from your Franchisor’s Head Office.

What we progressively dug into though, is how Avon has applied the thinking at the title of this episode to his business processes and refining opportunities to grow profit.

Outsourcing book keeping and drilling into the cents involved in an activity, are just some of the ways he is going about refining costs and maximising profitability.

The focus Avon’s approach is bringing to each element of his business, is enabling him to free up his time.

Could any of his tactics be useful on this front for you?


Are you experiencing any of the following when working with different cultures in your business?

Feel like you aren’t being heard?

Do behaviours not match the words that are being said?

And are you attributing some of this behaviour to “attitude problems”…

Barb West of Culture Works digs into the above during this episode of the podcast.

Without curiosity (and Barb describes herself as infinitely curious) on this subject, you may not identify some of the clues and insights you need to, in order to adapt and work more beneficially with different cultures in your business.

On a personal front, during my career it took me some time, and I mean sometime with some deal of frustration, to understand the concept that Barb talks to at 16:30 mins in to the interview….sometimes being calm and considered doesn’t work when you must emphasise your point!

In this episode of the podcast I talk with Steve Champion of ER Strategies and the Franchise Advisory Service.

What does it take to get your rates of pay accurate for your team in a fast food or retail environment?

What are some frequently made mistakes that can be avoided when interpreting award requirements or penalty rates?

Steve’s expertise and business are founded on getting these details right with QSRs and other Food and Convenience retailers.

Within this episode are some very clear recommendations on how to navigate issues that may arise, some potential consequences when you get it wrong….and how to deal with any queries along the way.

Some clear advice and some simple ways to connect to it with Steve and his business.

Essential elements of financial literacy from someone who is passionate about the Profit and Loss statement, and cash-flow planning!

Are you the artist of your financial picture?

Hear from Lisa on what you can do to create that picture….and thinking about how each decision you make has a financial impact…

In my experience, the Business Migration Stream has contributed significantly to the franchise sector.

In this episode of the podcast, I chat with Florence Buegge-Borshoff, a migration agent from Perth, with over 25 years of experience in the industry.

Florence gives some insight into a current review of the program being undertaken in Canberra and we discuss possible ways forward with the program.

Often we will hear franchisors groan about the challenge of franchisees taking up new initiatives.

However, when it comes to resisting bold and new ideas, is the problem with Franchisees or the Franchisor?

During this discussion, Greg highlights some key activities to undertake with your franchisor to bring initiative forward, and even talks about the number one priority when doing so.