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Build your own consultancy with The Alternative Board
With a TAB franchise you can use your experience to REALLY help local business owners thrive.
Why choose TAB to power your business
The business model is very clever, enabling
you to forge deep client relationships through your lucrative regular peer advisory boards. Becoming the trusted advisor of your clients enables you to target your business coaching, consultancy and development programmes very effectively and efficiently.
This is a booming market, proven to be even more so through periods of uncertainty, which seems to be the world we live in today! The advisory boards and coaching deliver a solid regular recuring income, with the consultancy projects and development programmes on top.
TAB is very cost-effective for clients, delivers them huge ongoing value, and is profitable for you – WIN:WIN. The result is a four-year plus average customer retention, which beats other dedicated business coaching, gym and home care franchises by a mile.
Whichever route you take, starting your own business with the TAB franchise provides you with a proven roadmap to follow from the sector’s leading brand and a clear exit strategy. You’ll have professional content and collateral, proven systems, and ongoing personal guidance and support to call on at all times.
And you’ll be part of a close-knit network of collaborative fellow franchisees.
Join a community of like-minded business leaders
Our most successful franchisees are confident and compelling, people who care – leaders who enjoy the reward of helping business owners flourish. They utilise the power of the brand, systems, support and content to deliver ongoing value to business owners in their local area.
“The business I have started helps me to achieve a lot of my personal goals. I won’t say it’s always been easy, but I have taken back control over my life and the rewards are certainly worth it. It’s one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.”
“It’s been challenging, but it’s been the most rewarding thing I have ever done.
I like that I can work when it suits me.”
“The values of TAB are very much around people. It’s about keeping one step ahead of the game and looking ahead and being able to see constant innovation. It’s a high calibre community.”
TAB Aberdeenshire East & TAB Dundee
“It gives me real independence, the opportunity to collaborate with great people and I’m in control of my own destiny. It is just as much about helping people to achieve their personal vision and improving their lives – a key driver for me.”
TAB Leeds North & Centre
Leadership from a former franchisee who's been in your shoes
Our leader – Ed Reid – moved from being a franchisee to take over as franchisor with his business partner Mags Fuller back in 2017. Ed’s been sat right where you are now and knows the TAB journey personally – he’s a good-guy committed to helping franchisees by sharing his experience. And Eds original TAB business is still trading, the franchisee who purchased it has grown the business further too!
As UK franchisor we still run a few territories keeping our finger on the pulse and testing new initiatives, before developing further with the network.
We have been in the UK since 2009, but actually trace our roots back to the USA when in 1990 our founder first developed the business concept to share the power he had experienced of non-exec directors. There are now over 400 TAB franchisees serving over 5,000 business owners each month across 25 countries.
34 territories operating in the UK, 75+ available across the country
With very low overheads, this high margin business model delivers a regular income with an initial investment of £65,700, including comprehensive initial training and first-year marketing costs. Each high street bank with franchise specialisms knows the model well and provides funding packages appropriate to individual circumstances.
"If you’ve been successful in your business career and you’re ready to enjoy the rewards of giving back emotional and financial – we look forward to exploring the TAB opportunity with you.”
TAB UK Franchisor
Liam Kane worked in financial services for Natwest for 33 years, before leaving his role as a regional director to start a TAB franchise in Northumberland. For 30 years of his career, Liam was working with SME businesses and that was something he didn’t want to lose when starting something new.
“There were three things I knew I wanted: to work with SME business owners, to run my own business, and I wanted to coach. What TAB offered me was the opportunity to tick all three boxes.”
Liam noted that what attracted him to the TAB franchise was its professionalism. “Given my background in a highly regulated industry, I was attracted to a professional organisation.”
Liam initially heard about TAB back in 2010 through a friend, but it wasn’t until 2021 when he left NatWest that another friend suggested he spoke to Paul Winterbottom, our TAB franchisee in Manchester with a similar background to Liam. Liam did so and in his words, “the rest is history.”
When asked how he has found the transition from a large corporate to running his own business, Liam said:
“It was strange at first. When you get to a senior position in a large company, you can make things happen relatively easily through other people. They tend to do what they say they would do if it’s reasonable. When I started my TAB business I found out that some business owners don’t do that – they might not turn up for a meeting or be there at an agreed time for a call – and that was a surprise. I felt that I was quite naïve, but I have gotten used to that now.
“We used to talk a lot about resilience in NatWest, but the reality is you need a lot more resilience as a small business owner. There are lots of highs, but also a lot of lows, and the two can be close together. It’s a rollercoaster from day to day but you just get off and join the queue again.”
Liam launched his TAB Business in November 2021 and had what he called, an ‘intense’ start. He described the training as ‘fantastic, testing, and enjoyable', and during the following weeks, he started to see his business coming together.
“My diary was very full of appointments from telemarketing and a number of those converted into members, so I had a very positive start. It was good fun and I was very well-supported. For example, when I ran my first board, one of the head office team came out to participate and gave me some helpful feedback. From launch to my first board, it took about 9 weeks, which I was really pleased with.”
Liam did not shy away from talking about the low days you have when running your own business, and one thing he picked up on was the support he had received from the broader TAB community.
“Everyone is happy to help and share. Everyone wants you to succeed and that is obvious. It sounds strange to someone from a corporate organisation that a culture like that can exist, but it does. It is in no one’s interest to see you fail. I’ve made some great friends, and everyone is happy to share their challenges with you and that was surprising, especially the value I could add for other franchisees based on my experiences as a leader in a bank. I’ve been impressed by the global community, especially the online virtual conference and there are other good examples where the different countries come together and support each other.”
Having successfully launched his TAB business, Liam is now enjoying the benefits that running a TAB business provides. He commented on how the flexibility that running his own TAB Franchise gives him is invaluable.
“It’s made a huge difference with having a young family. I thought my previous employer was flexible but when you’re on your own, it’s up to you, you have complete control. It has enabled me to drop my children off at nursery and pick them up every day. It means that on my wife’s time off, we can do something together, and I can play golf and spend time socially without having to ask for anyone’s permission.”
Not only is Liam seeing the benefits for himself and his family, but he is delighted at the positive impact he has made to the lives of his members. For example, a fourth generation, independent butcher wanted to put her stamp on the business. After completing a lot of work with her on her vision, and how to communicate it to her team, both her and Liam can see the real value that has given her and her business.
Liam is delighted with how much he was enjoying the coaching side of being a TAB franchisee.
“I finished my coaching qualification in 2021 before I joined TAB and experienced imposter syndrome. I felt I had a lot to prove to myself and other people, and this has made the coaching sessions with TAB the part I enjoy the most. I find that when I’m in conversation with professionals and prospective members, I can use coaching techniques as part of the conversation and they can see the value they would get with working with me. When I win new members too, that is a testament to all the financial and emotional investment you’ve put in, but it means so much more when someone puts their trust in you.”
When asked if he had any advice for anyone considering being a TAB franchisee, Liam answered:
“There is a huge demand out there for what TAB offers. Follow the process but overlay the process with your personality and be authentic. Be prepared for highs and lows. Keep talking to the TAB community. Don’t overstretch yourself financially and emotionally.
Max Crosby-Browne has been a TAB Franchisee of two territories (Derby and the East Midlands) since 2019.
With a background in marketing and consumer products, Max spent 20 years as CEO of consumer product manufacturing businesses, which were mainly private equity or hedge fund-owned. But the time came when he needed a change.
“I had spent 13 years as a CEO of a hedge fund business and in the end, I decided that I’d had enough. So, I then spent 6 months handing that over but didn’t really know what I was going to do. In those situations, you can easily get dragged into another job, but I had a lot of friends reminding me of the amount of experience I had, and how I could use it to do something for myself. It was around that time when I was introduced to TAB through a headhunter.”
After speaking to Ed (MD of TAB UK), Max very quickly bought into the concept behind TAB, its values and he could see how it could work for him.
“I’ve always been a confident person commercially, but not having to go it alone, and having the backing of a bigger brand was something that attracted me about franchising. One of the key things that helped me buy in was meeting Ed and his team, and I also liked the international aspect to the community.”
Max commented that he approached TAB with an open mind, with the self-belief that he could make something from it. While he knew he would have the support of HQ, one of his priorities was that he wanted to feel like he was running his own business, rather than being a glorified salesman. He feels that TAB has certainly delivered on that.
In March 2019, Max attended the TAB UK Franchisee Conference, and he remembers saying: “I’ve never felt like I’ve made forty friends quite so quickly.”
That experience solidified his belief that the people in the TAB community were credible and were those he wanted to be associated with. In the August of that year, after completing his training, Max was approached by Julian Smith, the then-owner of TAB Derby, about buying the Derby territory. As a result, Max inherited two facilitators and four boards.
The TAB business in Derby and the East Midlands has grown significantly over the past few years with Max at the helm.
“I’d always planned from day one that I wanted a model where I would bring in partners/facilitators to work with me. I then tried to launch three facilitators during the Covid lockdown, which had mixed results. I realised that to pull all our activity together, I needed some help, so I recruited a marketing manager who was focused on data management and content. By autumn of 2022, we had five facilitators and eight boards running and I have recently also recruited a lead generation manager to support our facilitators.”
When asked about his aspirations for his growing TAB business, Max said:
“I’ve always said I wanted to get it to the point where I was getting £10,000 a month of passive income. The bit I enjoy is putting the team and structure together. I love my boards, but also enjoy the strategic management of my business and making it all to work. If I feel like I’m recruiting strong facilitators, and have a great lead generation programme for them, then I’m just happy to let it be what it will be.”
Another benefit of running a TAB franchise which Max touched on was his work-life balance.
“My diary manages itself and my time is my own. None of this feels like work, and I have an amount of money coming in and I choose how I spend my time.”
Max said this dynamic makes him feel relaxed and happy. It is so rewarding to not have to think about the financials and the normal stresses of running a business because the facilitator model he’s built delivers for him in so many ways. For example, he only spends about eight days a month running his TAB business. The rest? Max spends it however he chooses.
What does Max think about the benefits of the TAB community:
“Nothing is forced on you. Fundamentally you can dip in or out of the broader community itself and the HQ resource. The beauty is: you know there is always someone there to use as a sounding board, whether that’s another member of my team, another franchisee, HQ, or my peer board, all of which are massively important to me.”
There are a few things Max believes a potential TAB franchisee must have. He calls them the “4 Cs.” - Confidence, credibility, curiosity, and commitment.
Max commented that the natural curiosity to be genuinely interested in the lives and work of business owners is a must-have quality if someone is going to make a TAB business work. Not only that, but he stressed that they need to be committed.
“The one thing I would say is that people have got to understand that this is hard work initially, a big financial commitment and that it’s down to them. There isn’t a magic wand from head office although they provide everything you need to make it work.”
“If you grow your TAB business strongly, it’s excellent income for only half a month’s work. You get predictable monthly recurring revenue, a significant work-life balance, and you feel like you’re running your own business. So, if you’re someone who wants to have a passive income and financial stability, a TAB franchise with a facilitator model is an incredible investment.”
Max continues to build his TAB business in the Midlands, and it’s going from strength to strength with the recent recruitment of Liz Horsey as his newest facilitator. That takes him another step closer to his goal of running twelve TAB boards by next summer. Watch this space…
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