Case Study

Exploring Odds and Ends :

Exploring Odds and Ends: Semi-Absentee Franchise Ownership

Thomas and Deborah Durig | Pennsylvania

durig case study

For those emerging from volatile markets, acquiring franchise semi-absentee ownership skills is often a resource balancing game. Constant logistical tasks, licensing requirements, employee planning and networking can easily weight down a fledgling franchiser’s schedule, off the bat. When it’s time to examine new opportunities, examine current investments and reallocate resources for directional changes–one can easily find themselves lacking the time needed for personal skill advancement.

Even more challenging are the constant crossroads facing new franchisees pursuing their first business. Because prospective franchisees examine a multitude of industry opportunities, each of these crossroads tends to invoke nervousness about options previously turned down. Before long, the entire search process can be overwhelming–making wanna be new franchisees wonder if they’re even headed in the right direction.

Previous Case Study
Case Study: Redefining the core strategy to buy a franchise
Next Case Study
Case Study: Strategizing Franchise Ownership Risk

Growth In the
of Giants:
Thomas and
Deborah Durig

Thomas and Deborah took a highly practical approach when crafting a franchise semi-absentee ownership plan: They explored healthy, established franchises well-known for their industry reach, managerial opportunities and ability to scale despite surrounding market climates. Subway was a primary option considered, but the sheer mass of details inherent in such pursuits were staggering.

Thomas, analytical in nature, wanted to have a 10-to-15-year plan. He and Deborah had a number of transferable skills to work with, and each had enough know-how to navigate the initial crossroads mentioned above.

As they’d soon find out, however, most franchising routes eventually end at the doorsteps of highly established, commercialized entities, wherein any opportunities are growth-restricted. Rather than standing on the shoulders of giants, new franchisees wither in their shade.

Challenges weren’t new for Thomas and Deborah, of course, but a difference exists between calculated and predetermined risks. Pursuing their current franchising avenue, likely, would be counter-intuitive to their goals–and even their applicable skills.

Thomas, the Sr. Director of Life Sciences R&D and Innovation at Ashland, Inc., was well-attuned to the realities of volatile markets. He commonly served as a Global R&D leadership role for others–exploring new product development opportunities, avenues for sustainable growth, acquired technology integration possibilities and more. To say the least: His franchising approach, when it had officially begun, would be adroitly grounded in risks of the calculative sort, statistical analysis and then some.

Deborah’s skills met the bill halfway, of course. With a successful career in clinical pharmacy, she brought her years of experience at DuPont Children’s Clinic to the table. Much like Thomas, her sights were set on reliable scale, no matter the environment, powered by purpose and the careful leveraging of current and soon-to-be-acquired resources. As a cancer survivor, minor disabilities had kept her from the hospital, these days. Still, she was ready to re-engage the professional pursuit of something better: something both she and Thomas knew could be unstoppable when aimed in the right direction.

Franchise Semi-Absentee
Ownership as a
Retirement Strategy

Of Salaries and
Saving Graces:
Careyann Golliver’s

As for their aim, they knew it needed some work. They also recognized their need for professional assistance, as they’d both had fathers skilled in the art of business–fathers who pursued knowledge, first and foremost, via those experienced enough to provide it.

The two met Careyann through a mutual friend’s suggestion, presenting the rough framework of their plan. Franchise semi-absentee ownership would be a significant landmark, undoubtedly, but their ultimate goal was to own more than one business within five years. “Grow and diversify,” was the name of the game–one capable of garnering a second home in Texas: a place to build a legacy for their children.

Careyann introduced them to the America’s Franchise Matchmaker™ Proven Process, taking them through the steps of self-discovery which beget strong, long-lasting franchising decision innovations. Ideally, Deborah would take the “boots on the ground” role, managing their franchise’s day-to-day operations. Thomas, meanwhile, would stick with his salaried position for several years longer–designing their franchising direction from afar while maintaining their family’s sustainability.

Careyann’s matchmaking process made quick work of their situation, helping the duo reach a simple-retail-based design. Alongside this would be another concept: a service-based business. By evaluating them against one another, they could create a unified strategy capable of exponential growth and scale.

This approach was a little surprising for them, too, as they’d initially eliminated these choices

from the drawing board. Real estate is typically tough to leverage as a new franchising team, after all. By walking them through the conceptual process, however, Careyann matched Thomas and Deborah with a franchisor that knows how to deal with commercial real estate with a plan which wasn’t only affordable–but accessible.

Unexpected Directions
in Franchise

75 Days
of Decision

In 10 weeks, they moved forward–eventually bringing their service-based franchising plan into fruition. 

Dutiful planning and the due diligence of strategy refinement beget franchises destined to grow. Careyann Golliver had put Thomas and Deborah on success’s path, teaching them the true value of reexamining the business decision-making process. Franchising trials exist at every turn, within the industry, but a little help goes a long way. Today, Thomas and Deborah continue their journey, emerging from the shade into sunny pastures–each fertile with plenty of opportunity.


“This has been a dream that we had had but just never really felt … there wasn’t really a tangible way. We didn’t know how to access that dream really
or even get started. And that’s really one of the joys of working with Careyann, and working with a franchise consultant.

The experience was really invaluable to have not just, Careyann, but also then all the other resources that come with working with a franchise coach to help us be clear about our objectives and really be in a much better position to then evaluate different types of franchise opportunities and really opened our eyes onto a whole world we just barely were aware even existed to be such an important part of the economy.”


Previous Case Study
Case Study: Redefining the core strategy to buy a franchise
Next Case Study
Case Study: Strategizing Franchise Ownership Risk