The Joint Chiropractic Franchise President and CEO Peter Holt Featured in Forbes Magazine
Spotlighted as an industry thought leader, Holt explains how The Joint Chiropractic® is disrupting chiropractic care for the better
With more than 30 years of experience in the industry, no one may understand the challenges and methodology of overseeing a franchise system better than Peter Holt, President and CEO of The Joint Chiropractic®, the fastest-growing chiropractic franchise in the nation.
This wasn’t lost on Dave Know, senior contributor CMO Network at Forbes magazine, who recently featured Holt in the article “How Franchising Can Transform A Fragmented Industry.” In the article, Holt explains how The Joint strengthened its franchising community, how franchising is a great opportunity for fragmented industries, and outlines the challenges and methodology of franchising.
Here’s an excerpt of the article:
Dave Knox: At The Joint, you have been part of re-energizing the brand. How did your deep background in franchising help in this effort?
Peter Holt: Franchising is not an industry. Franchising is simply a methodology, a way you can expand a business. And like so many businesses, we all have different options for expansion, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. And what has been interesting to me is there are probably over 230 different industries that utilize the methodology of franchising. In my own career, I have been involved with industries as varied as frozen desserts at Tasti D-Lite and the postal business with Mail Boxes Etc. Now with chiropractic care, you can look at that and say, “what on earth do all of those different businesses have in common?” Concept wise, very little, but in terms of the practice of how to build it through and manage it through a franchise system, an enormous amount.
And so that experience you have gained from each one of those different concepts can be leveraged as you go forward to that next concept. I often talk about when you are building and managing your franchise system, it’s really important to understand that you are actually running two parallel businesses that are unrelated. What I mean is that you are working on a “C” concept, in this case chiropractic care, and then you are working with methodology and that’s franchising. And the methodology is agnostic to the concept, but understanding both of them is the best way you can really maximize the opportunity of what that concept is.
Coming to The Joint, the concept was sound, but it had a couple of challenges. First, it was taking the franchise units 18 to 24 months to reach breakeven. Based on my background in small box retail, I knew we needed to get that break even to be between 6 to 9 months. We spent a lot of time focusing on how to improve the time to break even so our franchisees would not run out of cash.
The other two challenges were the corporate units. While Corporate was very focused on these corporate-owned units, the franchisees stopped feeling the love. If you have spent any time in the franchise model, if your franchisee stops feeling love, that’s a tough place to be. We needed to revitalize and improve on the relationship with our franchise community. The other issue related to the corporate units was that these units were underperforming and putting a financial pressure on the company. So with my background in franchising, I had to fix the Corporate Units both in terms of their profitability, as well as the negative impact they were having on our relationship with the franchisees.
Knox: The Chiropractic industry is largely made up of solo practitioners. Why do you think the franchise model was such an opportunity?
Holt: There are so many highly fragmented industries that can really benefit from the franchise model. If you look at the chiropractic industry in this country, it’s about a $15 billion industry, and it is absolutely dominated by the 40,000 independent practitioners. We are sitting here as The Joint, we have 530 clinics open in 34 States. We have roughly about 1,400 doctors under our umbrella and we are the largest provider of chiropractic care in the country. That is possible, specifically, by utilizing that franchise model. And I think you can do this in hair care, in ice cream shops, and all kinds of industries where there is economy to scale that you create when you can increase the size of that overall network and leverage the experience. Franchising is the business of accelerated learning. If you are an independent concept, you are growing every year and applying those learnings to your business to be more profitable and more successful. In our franchise model, we have 530 versions of that learning taking place. Each one of those franchisees is bringing their own expertise and experience into the field and we can see best practices. We can take that and format it in a way that we can roll it out across the whole network and everybody benefits. This accelerated learning is inherent in the franchise model.
Click here to read more about Holt’s unique insight featured in Forbes “How Franchising Can Transform A Fragmented Industry.”
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