Converting Your Cooking Passion Into a Career
Food preparation evokes strong feelings in many home cooks, so it’s only natural that many will want to turn that love for food into their vocation.
However, research has shown that new restaurants have a high chance of failure; one influential Cornell study found that 27% of restaurants fail within a year.
The good news is that failure is entirely avoidable, whether you choose to go into the restaurant industry or not; the key is in learning how to manage your passion like a business.
Nurture your personnel
For any kitchen above a small client base size, you will need your own staff.
According to Entrepreneur, a new catering outfit will need anywhere from 5 to 10 staff operating the business, with a minimum being a chef, cooks, manager and front of house.
That’s a lot of responsibility, but taking time out for your staff from the get-go can help you to make a success of your business.
This comes in two forms: firstly, employee benefits.
According to industry experts Cerity business insurance, workers will be happier and more productive if they are remunerated properly and looked after.
Secondly, encouraging open communication will help you to develop new menus and provide food for thought to customers.
Listen to criticism
Your home cooking may objectively be delicious, but the local foodies may hate it.
Bad reviews are hard to take, as is criticism of your cooking, but it’s incredibly important to take it on the nose and work to improving your meals.
Take an analytical approach to your menu; look at what sells well and what doesn’t, and marry this up with feedback from your staff and customers.
Having an open mind is crucial to keeping the menu fresh and your customers engaged.
Keep Your Ideas Fresh
It’s helpful to structure your restaurant around one cuisine or theme of cooking, but make sure you freshen it up.
When you think of all-American cooking, it’s really a melting pot of Italian, Mexican and other cuisines such as German and Japanese.
Tinker with your menu, offer something else to keep customers interested, and most of all, keep yourself engaged.
A stale menu will, in time, kill your passion for cooking; keep it alive with experimentation.
Going from the kitchen to a professional outfit is something that shouldn’t be taken lightly.
From the cooking perspective, it really comes down to looking after your people and keeping an open mind.
Continually improve and innovate with your recipes, and the custom will come.