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Institute of Certified Franchise Executives

Two hundred twelve franchise executives (second largest class of CFEs ever) were certified at the 2019 IFA Annual Convention, representing the U.S., Australia, Canada, Ireland, Italy, The Philippines, The Netherlands, Thailand, United Arab Emirates. The 2019 Special Sessions included nine full-day session classes at the IFA Annual Convention and a half-day invitation-only leadership session designed exclusively for C-suite CFE executives.

The CFE program is making exciting advancements on its strategic path as we implement new curriculum guidelines, revenue structures, marketing strategies and enhancement of the CFE candidate experience. These collective efforts have the potential to engage an increased number of IFA members in the flagship certification program of the franchising sector.

The ICFE Strategic Plan was officially and unanimously adopted by the ICFE Board at the February 2018 meeting with the recognition that it is a living document. The approved plan includes:

  • An updated ICFE mission statement that states we “Certify and educate individuals & organizations to the highest standards.
  • To achieve that, we will:
    • Be a leading resource to accelerate individual & organizational growth.
    • Provide applicable, forward-thinking education and learning opportunities that only we can provide.
    • Facilitate a lifelong, continuous improvement network of trusted colleagues.
  • A playbook that provides the strategic direction for ICFE and will support the launch of CFE 5.0, which is the plan to leap-frog CFE into the future by developing specializations and tracks to serve CFEs.
    • To date, we’ve done a deep-dive curriculum review that has produced standardized course requirements and guidelines that are being implemented with all providers.
    • A multi-year operational plan that includes goals for developing new courses and sponsorships.

In 2019, the ICFE will focus on expanded social, digital, and traditional marketing of CFE. At convention, we encouraged graduates to post to personal and convention social media channels using #ifa2019 and #CFE. A closed LinkedIn group has been converted to an open CFE networking group for both candidates and graduates.

In 2019, the ICFE pledge was introduced to underscore the importance of the ICFE and its role in franchising excellence. It states, “I pledge that I will, with this certification and to the best of my ability, act with the highest level of professionalism and integrity. I will be a champion of the values of the ICFE and be a torch bearer for the good things that the IFA Foundation stands for. I will practice continuous improvement personally and through my company. I will endeavor to mentor others, embrace diversity and grow the CFE community, especially through our youth, our veterans and my peers.”

We have 2,300 professionals involved in CFE today. But we have a goal of having 5,000 and then 10,000 join the best professional community in the industry. We believe that everyone in franchising will benefit from a CFE and we invite you to take the next step in your journey today.