Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Business Administration (DBA)


Bisk College of Business

First Advisor

Christian J. Sonnenberg

Second Advisor

Robert F. Keimer

Third Advisor

Charles E. Bryant

Fourth Advisor

Kevin Burke


The franchisor-franchisee relationship is unique; it provides a blend of entrepreneurial spirit with the structure of an established corporation. Franchisees operate with a degree of independence, taking certain risks and managing the details of day-to-day business, yet are also obligated to follow prescribed systems and processes of the franchisor. Both parties have a vested interest in the success of this relationship. While many macro-level factors (economy, technology, and demographics) come into play for a franchise’s success, one micro-level variable that may be identified early during recruitment is the personality characteristic of the franchisee candidate. A micro-level or “microfoundations” approach addresses individual-level traits, interactions, and relationships. Franchisees with different personality types and characteristics may not financially perform the same. Of the minimal research that does address micro-level

attributes of personality in entrepreneurship, most simply categorize franchisees under the umbrella term of “entrepreneurs.” Yet, this is only part of the picture. Success for a franchisee is not only governed by a willingness to take risks, innovate, and the need for achievement but an ability to cooperate and negotiate with the franchisor. This puts franchisees in a distinctive middle ground where they are both dependent and independent entrepreneurs engaged in entrepreneurial activities that impact financial performance. This research evaluated the personality types and characteristics in franchisees. It sought to address the research question, “Do Jung/Myers personality types and entrepreneurial motivational characteristics predict franchisee financial performance.” Personality type and trait characteristic approaches are a complex and well-established area of research, but their effects on the franchisor-franchisee relationship are poorly understood. Specifically, the personality type characteristics of the Jung/Myers Model of Personality, along with entrepreneurial motivational personality characteristics of “innovativeness,” “internal locus of control,” “need for achievement,” and “risk-taking propensity” were measured in franchisees to identify a direct relationship with these traits and the financial performance of franchisees through subjective financial measures. No such micro-level personality model for franchisees yet exists in the field. By addressing these gaps and establishing a relationship, this study hoped to show a significant benefit for franchisors as a method for the recruitment of successful candidates in the future. This quantitative study used survey data from 153 franchisees within U.S.-based franchise networks to test eight hypotheses. Significant relationships are found between internal locus of control and need for achievement motivational personality characteristics and financial performance as measured through subjective franchisee financial performance. However, no significant relationships were determined between the Jung/Myers personality types and franchisee financial performance. Practical implications of the findings include a better understanding of the impacts and significance of Jung/Myers personality types and motivational personality characteristics of franchisees that lead to better-performing franchisees in the franchisor-franchisee relationship. The study concludes with limitations and suggestions for future research.


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