The Franchise Industry Veteran Will Lead the Supplier Network’s Sales Department
Franchise industry veteran Dean Hatzitheodosiou has been tapped as chief sales officer of Franchise Supplier Network (FSN). The business consulting organization helps franchisors find their ideal suppliers.
“I love what FSN stands for and the service we are bringing to the franchise community. I have always loved making connections and helping provide solutions to my partners, customers and friends,” Hatzitheodosiou says. “But with FSN, we are taking this to the next level by providing a true resource for franchisors to easily find that key solution, platform or supplier that will help solve key problems in their business.”
Hatzitheodosiou adds that his position comes about as FSN grows and gains traction, which increases the need for someone to focus on growth strategies and strategic operations that will benefit existing and future partners. His previous relationships with FSN’s founders made it easy to join “an organization that will change the landscape of franchising and provide a service that I am passionate about.”
Hatzitheodosiou’s Franchising Background
Hatzitheodosiou has worked in franchising for many years, most recently serving as an enterprise sales manager at FranConnect, a leading franchise management software provider. His other roles include senior director of sales at FranchiseBlast, a franchise management software company; an account executive at Gilmore Doculink; and a territory account executive at Rogue Wave Software, formerly Klocwork.
He advises prospective candidates to consider whether franchising is something they want to do. “Attend conferences and find someone in franchising who can provide true, honest, real-world feedback. Franchising your business is not easy, so make sure you speak to people that are in the space and have experienced what you are going through. Then as you start your franchise odyssey, find resources and people that will truly help you work on your business, not in your business.”
His favorite aspect of the industry is the sense of community that it fosters. “We often hear the term franchise family, but it truly is. We are all connected to everyone in some way and are all willing to help anyone with whatever the issue is they are facing. When we see each other, it’s like a big fat Greek wedding.”
Franchisors need strong, reputable, honest suppliers that will look at them as partners, Hatzitheodosiou says. “Everyone has a network of some kind, and when it comes to suppliers, most franchisors work with who they know or who they have used before as this is what they are comfortable with. There is nothing wrong with that, but don’t let that make you have a narrow outlook on the suppliers in that space.”
Hatzitheodosiou brings up technology as a case in point. “There are thousands of technology companies out there, and many franchisors have used some of them in the past. Take your time, find the right one, or speak with someone as a reference.”
He says communication is key to any franchisor-supplier relationship and emphasizes that communication “is more than just a supplier emailing and calling for updates or franchisors discussing issues that may arise. Communication is key to not only address key areas of concern but learning about other franchisor initiatives and projects that might be out of scope for the supplier. It may be finding out more about the supplier’s business and their partners that could benefit the franchisor.”