Franchising Dreams: The Lure of Entrepreneurship in America

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University of Chicago Press, Apr 1, 2004 - Business & Economics - 186 pages
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McDonald's. Blockbuster Video. Jiffy Lube. Subway. Franchising has become an ever-present feature of the American landscape. One-third of the U.S. gross domestic product flows through franchises, and one out of every sixteen workers is employed by one. But how did franchising come to play such a dominant role in the American economy? What are the day-to-day experiences of franchisees and franchisers in the workplace? What challenges and pitfalls await them as they stake their claim to prosperity? These are just a few of the questions explored in Franchising Dreams, a documentary-like look into the frustrations and uncertainties that entrepreneurs face in their pursuit of the American dream.

Peter M. Birkeland worked for three years in the front-line operations of franchise units for three companies, met with CEOs and executives, and attended countless trade shows, seminars, and expositions. All this firsthand experience gave him unprecedented access to the hopes and aspirations of franchisees. His book closely traces different franchisees and follows them as their dreams of wealth and independence buckle beneath the weight of frustrating logistics and contractual technicalities. Through extensive interviews and research, Birkeland not only discovers what makes franchisees succeed or fail, he uncovers the difficulties in running a business according to someone else's system and values. Bearing witness to a market flooded with fierce competitors and dependent on the inscrutable whims of consumers, he uncovers the numerous challenges that franchisees face in making their businesses succeed.
 

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User Review  - DanStratton - LibraryThing

I love a well researched book. It is even better when it is an easy, enjoyable read. Mr. Birkeland does both. He researched franchising for his thesis at the University of Chicago and this book is the ... Read full review

Franchising dreams: the lure of entrepreneurship in America

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Birkeland, who is the CEO of his own institute as well as a professor and lecturer (at the Universities of Minnesota and Chicago, respectively), tells the story of franchising by engaging us ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction
1
Im Tore Down Lynching and the Birth of a Blues Tradition
17
Make My Getaway Southern Violence and Blues Entrepreneurship in W C Handys Father of the Blues
66
DisRememberment Blues Narratives of Abjection and Redress
120
Shoot Myself a Cop Mamie Smiths Crazy Blues as Social Text
159
Guns Knives and Buckets of Blood The Predicament of Blues Culture
195
The Blade Already Crying in My Flesh Zora Neale Hurstons Blues Narratives
233
EPILOGUE
273
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
281
NOTES
285
BIBLIOGRAPHY
313
INDEX
327
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About the author (2004)

Peter M. Birkeland is a speaker, consultant, and president of the Birkeland Institute, A company focused on increasing individual and network performance. He is also adjunct professor of strategic management and organization in the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota, and lecturer in the Graham School of General Studies at the University of Chicago.

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