There are many people who hold the belief that everyone should work a customer service job at least once in their lives. Some, like myself, take that belief a step further and maintain that everyone should have a career in the military at least once in their lives. While the latter is a bit more challenging to achieve, a military career provides people with a set of skills and a level of discipline that they can’t receive anywhere else. Because of this, many veterans find great success in their professional careers after the military, with many choosing entrepreneurship as their next venture.
As a veteran of the United States Air Force and as the owner of Kona Ice NE Green County, I’ve seen firsthand the benefits of franchise ownership, specifically with a mobile concept. Below, I will detail how veterans like myself can achieve the same level of accomplishment while finding their passion with a post-military career in franchising.
As mentioned above, veterans develop a keen set of skills throughout their time in the military, several of which are transferrable to a career in franchising. For example, when someone buys into a franchise, they buy into an entire business system that has an established set of rules, systems and processes already in place. Veterans understand, more than most, the need to follow guidelines in order to achieve a goal. Because of this, following the processes of a franchise system comes naturally for many veterans.
Another reason many veterans find their fit in franchising is because they are extremely self-driven and motived. A military career often presents more challenges than a regular profession might, instilling a mindset in service members that success is based on hard work and discipline. This ideal allows many veteran franchise owners to find great success in their business. It’s important to note that as a franchise owner, you have the power to make your business as successful as you want it to be. If you work hard, put in the hours and take advantage of the resources provided by the franchisor, you will reap the benefits of a thriving franchise.
ADVANTAGES OF A MOBILE CONCEPT
Having worked for more traditional franchise concepts in the past, I have found that there are certain advantages to owning a mobile concept that conventional brick-and-mortar brands do not offer. A major perk? Mobile franchises aren’t confined to regular working hours, meaning you are at liberty to create your own schedule. At Kona Ice, for example, franchisees are able to choose which events to go to and how long to stay at those events. This freedom grants you the power to make your business as fruitful – or in some cases, fruitless – as you want. So, having a military mindset and strong work ethic aids in the success of a mobile franchise.
Another advantage to owning a mobile franchise concept is that your business serves as a “walking” advertisement. When people hear the tropical tunes and see the vibrant colors of my Kona Ice truck, they are immediately enticed – children and adults alike line up down the street to get a Kona Kup. Plus, military personnel have an understanding of how to manage people and situations in order to achieve a goal, meaning a veteran-owned mobile franchise is sure to offer customers military-grade service built on consistency.
FINDING YOUR PASSION POST MILITARY
After serving in the military, many veterans find it difficult to readjust to civilian life and the civilian workforce. Opening a franchise, specifically a mobile concept, is one path that many veterans take in order to settle into a fulfilling post-military career. However, above all else, it is essential to find a career that you are passionate about.
My time in the Air Force helped me build a set of skills and a work ethic that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. I always knew, though, that I wanted a high-energy career that would allow me to connect with people. Through my work with Kona Ice, I have been able to see people at their happiest – on their wedding day, at a birthday party or even at a company picnic. Working with a mobile franchise concept has provided me the opportunity to stay busy and successful, but most importantly, it has helped me find a career in which I am truly passionate about.
Ron Buckner is the owner of Kona Ice of NE Green County in Oklahoma. In addition to running his Kona Ice business, Ron has held a career in real estate for over 40 years. Ron also served in the United States Air Force from 1971 to 1975.