Business

Have You Got What It Takes To Run A Food Business?

Chloe Harwood
Written by Chloe Harwood

There are so many exciting industries to enter into. Become a business owner is one of the most exciting places to be. Whether you’re taking over a company, or you’ve got this fresh new idea in your head, you’ll always be kept on your toes and interested. The long term rewards it can bring are incredible. Travel, money, luxury, and free are all but a few of the reason you should make your idea into a business. One of the easiest niche’s to start a business in is the food industry. It is constantly booming no matter what your goal is. If you want to be a fast food restaurant, or a luxury fine dining ordeal, there’s still the same values you need to follow. You need to focus on hygiene, and quality food and service. It is really easy to make it, but it’s also so easy to break it. One bad review, or one dodgy hygiene comment and your business may never recover. Take a look at these steps and see how they can influence you. All the tips mentioned are something all businesses need, but with a little twist towards the food industry.

Know Your Industry

You need to know your industry to be successful in it. The food one is ever growing. People are creating quirky designs, amazing food, and great service. You need to find a way to better them. One creative food niche to head into at the moment is the desert one. It is perfect for hitting every age group. Everyone has a sweet tooth, and as long as you’re making your designs funky, exciting, and appealing, people will come flocking back all the time. It’s such a high earning niche due to the fact children go crazy for it as well. They’d much rather be eating deserts than at a fancy restaurant, so that’s where big families head. No matter what niche you head into however, you will always need similar types of equipment. These can be quite expensive, so finding the ones that’ll work best for you and are cost effective is important. Circling back to the desert industry, you’ll need a decent sized freezer with insulated wall panels to stock all the frozen elements of your dessert. Normal restaurants will most likely need this too, but are more likely to need a large fridge rather than freezer. If you’re a luxury restaurant, all of your food should be cooked fresh, avoid frozen foods at all costs. To know your industry throughout, you need to know your competitors. Go in as a paying customer and see how they operate. You need to gather all the information you can, such as pricing, quality, service etc. Read reviews on the internet and excel in areas that they fail. With the food industry, you obviously need to know all about standards of hygiene. If you want to succeed, yours need to be of the highest standard. Do some online research, and even look into taking an online course. It’ll all pay off in the long run.

Mentality

As with any business, you need a strong head to be able to be successful in business. There are certain mentalities that just won’t cut the mustard in the food industry. Laziness being one of them. Laziness leads to loss of customers, and loss in profits. You need to be on the ball constantly monitoring where your strengths and weaknesses are in order to improve. In the beginning of starting a business, it’ll most likely require a lot of sleepless nights, working all day and a lot of personal hours lost. It will become your life, and if you’re not prepared to let it then the industry won’t be for you. This is so evident in the food industry. When you just start out, you’ll most likely be running the place on your own, or with minimal staff due to funding. The stress it’ll have on your mind and body is huge, you just need to learn to cope with it. Your mentality must always be positive. When dealing with customers face to face like you would with food, you need to be happy, smiling, and engaging. It’s easy for any issues from home to creep into the workplace and affect your day. This is fine if you’re stuck behind an office desk where the customer can’t see you. But on the shop floor of a food establishment you can’t let this show. It’ll only lead to bad reviews. You need to be positive about every aspect of your business in order for it to be successful.

Confidence

Confidence is key to any successful business. You need to have confidence in what you’re selling and what you do, in order for your customers to have confidence in you. There will be points where you’ll lose confidence in your goal. Whether that be due to not enough sales, a bad review, or generally just a tired day. Remain focused as often as you can and don’t let anything drop your confidence. Be the driving force your business needs to get it through any rough times. You also need to have the confidence when marketing your business. You could be doing radio talks, handing out flyers, or just interacting with the public the get them to notice your business. Remember how nervous you’d get standing in front of the classroom? It’ll be like that but on a wider scale. Conquer that fear, and be the happy chatty person you need to bring customers in. Again, you won’t be stuck behind a desks in the food industry, so you need to learn to master any fears and be as confident as possible. Once you’ve drawn the customers in, you need to exude this confidence even more. They’ll be expecting you to be enthusiastic not only about being there and talking to them, but also in the product you’re trying to sell. With food, you’re best to take the in your face, but not so in your face approach. You want to be recommending and upselling your products in a bubbly way, yet don’t pressure them into something they might not enjoy. Finding the right balance is essential.

Patience

This is an obvious skill needed for any area of business. None more so than in the beginning. Unless you’re the luckiest person alive, you will encounter many setbacks that will really test your patience. Especially if they’re happening due to no fault of your own. The thing with business is, you’ll outsource a lot of things you need. Shipping products being one of the main when it comes to food. Delays in this process due to the lack of attention to detail the other end can be so frustrating. But you need to keep good working relationships going in every area. Keep patient, and you’ll reap the rewards. Just like with the customer side of things, you need to uphold a good reputation with the logistics side of things. Nobody wants to work with someone rude, don’t let that someone be you. Now, with food possibly more than any industry, you need to have patience when it comes to customers. If you’ve ever worked as an employee of say a fast food restaurant, you’ll know how nasty some people can be when they don’t get their own way. You need to make sure you’ve got enough patience to smile and honour whatever wish they have. If they say the food tastes nasty, you make them another one no questions asked. The customer is never wrong. If you get to the stage where you’re employing staff, you need to make sure they follow this mantra as well. There’s nothing more damaging than a review of bad customer service.

Money Skills

This last point is a bit of general advice that applies to all businesses, but will help you in the food industry. Being able to manage your money is so important, right from the very beginning. As a small business, this should be pretty manageable. When you’re a restaurant, chances are you’ll stay ‘small’ in terms of corporate businesses for a while. Whilst business might always be booming, it’ll be very hard for you to get to the level of opening branches across the country. But, it is still possible with hard work. So, when you’re managing your own finances you need to track everything careful. A few wrong calculations and you’re plunging yourself into some nasty debts. As silly as it may sound, you’ll need good money skills when it comes to serving customers. It won’t be good for business if you’re taking ages to count some change out. If you feel your skills are a little rusty, try taking an online maths course, or a bookkeeping one. The latter is going to be more beneficial for the managing of money on a whole. It will help you brush up on your maths as well. If you’re planning on hiring an accountant, just simply take an online maths course or download a book.

About the author

Chloe Harwood

Chloe Harwood