Time-honoured advice from Red Rooster visionaries has served this franchisee well.
Andrew Russell is one of Red Rooster’s most successful franchisees. However, he says he wouldn’t be where he is today without the invaluable advice from Red Rooster’s former managing director and his old boss. Due to their words of wisdom, Andrew has steered four outlets to success whilst also maintaining an enviable work-life balance. He explains how he’s managed to make it all work.
Introducing Andrew Russell – Red Rooster Franchise Partner in Hervey Bay, Chermside, Arana Hill, Nundah (QLD)
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
It was actually from Frank Romano – Red Rooster’s former managing director and founder of Craveable Brands’ Chicken Treat – who told me, ‘life is like a three-legged stool’. In other words, to keep the stool steady you need a good balance of the three legs relating to work, family and health. It’s something I’ve never lost sight of in all my years in business and it’s kept me in check.
So how has Frank’s advice panned out for you?
I’ve worked hard in the business, but I’ve also worked hard to keep myself and my family healthy and happy. At the end of the day your family is what you’re working for. While my four kids are all grown up now, aged 20 to 27, when they were younger, being a franchisee really appealed as I was able to achieve a good work-life balance. Now, even though I still put a lot of effort into a business, I still make time for myself – I’m a fan of watersports and love water skiing, sailing and surfing.
How did you get into the business?
I started out as an upholsterer apprentice then got a job with Red Rooster in 1982 working my way up to area manager. I later worked for another food company Jamaica Blue. One day back in 2003, I went to lunch in Hervey Bay with a friend of mine Allan – then the Red Rooster National Franchise Manager. A store was for sale in the area and I decided to buy it after talking to him. I later bought three more stores in Queensland.
loyal | engaging | humorous
What was it that appealed about the brand?
Red Rooster had a big sales turnover. I had the best performing stores, so I felt there was no glass ceiling with their sales. The cost involved in buying a franchise versus the return you get from it was also very appealing as well.
From one Red Rooster store to…
Was there any trepidation in buying that first store?
Not really. Allan, who also used to be my boss, gave some really good advice saying, ‘If you don’t know something, always get the best advice you can before making a decision’. I always felt safe with that knowledge and knowing I could count on him as a mentor was very reassuring.
What’s been an outstanding achievement for you in the business?
Giving my team members a chance to succeed by giving them the tools and mentorship they need to turn their lives around is the most satisfying part for me in running this business. On the financial side, running four successful stores and achieving 100 per cent sales growth in three years at the Hervey Bay store was very satisfying as well!
Sounds like you’ve had some great advice over the years. What’s your own best advice for potential franchisees?
Hire and keep good people by developing their skills, reinvest back into the business to maintain its high quality and standards, and focus on sales and control your costs.
Has the franchising industry media attention affected your business at all?
No. The sales went down a little over that period, but I’d say that was just co-incidental and was more to do with the economy at the time.
Where do you see the future of Red Rooster heading?
I do see the brand growing, particularly under the guidance of Red Rooster’s new CEO Nick Keenan. I really think he has the right direction and vision in mind for the company through focusing on the core products such as our superb roast chicken, instead of wanting to radically change the brand.
RED ROOSTER FRANCHISING OPPORTUNITIES AVAILABLE
Find out more about our current franchising opportunities and become a successful Red Rooster store owner – Keep reading!