Countless food lovers try and fail but only a handful succeed. This is the story of most of the entrepreneurs, not just in the Food Industry, but in every industry. But, running a food business goes beyond having a realistic business plan and a marketing strategy, it demands sheer bloody-minded conviction and determination.
Being an entrepreneur and a business owner, there is absolutely nowhere to shift the blame and the growth of the business because it solely depends on you and your skills.
To start and run a successful food business, the secret skills that will decide the fate of your business in the Food Industry are...
1. Food Skills! Start at the Beginning and Learn the Basics
Regardless of whether you have experience in the Food Industry as a Professional Chef or not, it is obvious that you will be spending some time, if not most of the time in the kitchen if you are going to start a food business. Whether you are going to cook yourself or hire staff, consistent delivery of quality cooking is essential and doing so at a fast pace can be critical to the success or failure of your food business.
The best way to learn the basics and get the fundamentals of food skills is to take up a vocational course such as a Professional Program in The Culinary Arts, Cookery or Patisserie depending on the niche of your business. This would not just hone your food skills, it would also give you with a bird’s eye view of how the Food Industry works and where your business can fit in.
Check out a real story of a Foodpreneur at The ICCA Dubai, Malavika Raghavan. This is her journey from an aspiring entrepreneur to a successful business owner!
Do you feel inspired by Malavika's story and wish to embark on the same journey? Then equip yourself with the right set of hands-on skills and knowledge to set-up your very own Food Business!
Click the button below to learn more about the Professional Program.
There are also several other food skills such as Food Safety, Food Handling, Equipment Handling, Commercial Food Production, Catering Operations, Menu Planning, etc. These are all concepts that are taught in an industry focused approach in a vocational course and will equip you with the right set of knowledge & skills for the success of your food business.
2. Business Skills
Beneath the buns and beverages lurks a business model that requires multiple business skills such as finance, management, purchasing & negotiation, marketing & organization skills which you must possess if you hope to survive in the industry. We no longer live in the age of information overload. Everything can be organized to improve efficiency and maintaining discipline can be a critical factor to the success of your business, and yourself as an entrepreneur.
- Researching Competition
Research your competitors, in fact eat at your competitor’s restaurants often and keep track of large franchises & their activities through publications, journals, social media, etc.
Take the time to anticipate & analyze competition in the market and create a marketing strategy that highlights your USPs (unique selling propositions) and work on communicating a compelling message to your target audience.
- Formulating a Business Plan
Another key business skill is the art of strategic planning and implementing strategies. This is what will draw the line between you and the amateurs.
Stay focused on making small, but quality progress everyday towards the bigger picture. Take time off periodically to think about the larger goals of your business and to make sure you are on the right track with all the business strategies are in place.
- Marketing & Social Media Management
While you must have a sound marketing strategy in place, you will also need to work on promoting your products online using the most trending and relevant Social Media channels (especially Instagram). This will help you get more exposure as a brand, take orders online and even help you provide a great customer service on all touch points of your business. To really go the extra mile with your marketing strategy, start a blog and hire a freelance to create content and run campaigns. Such efforts will generate new business and help build profitable revenue streams for your business.
Lastly, seen as a critical management skill, Leadership enables you to take charge, assemble, mobilize and motivate your team members. Being an aspiring entrepreneur, it is a skill that you need to possess and build upon to get your team to work as hard as you and make the business a successful one.
Focus on the tasks that need immediate attention and find a way to clear the noise distracting you from doing it. And, always remember that if you don’t get things done, somebody else who is more focused and disciplined will, most probably a competitor.
All the above mentioned are the skills that you are going to have to ensure, to have a solid foundation for your business. And, you should not worry about the hardships and challenges, because they are definitely going to be there, maybe even all at once! So, what you should actually be looking for, is ways to acquire the knowledge and skills that will help you overcome them all.
And, the most important thing is to understand, that if you really have the passion and the will to make your dream come true, there is nothing that can stop you...