Category: General

Why You Need One for Your Catering Startup

Category:General

We highly recommend that you avoid becoming yet another business that underestimated costs or found that the market wasn’t ready for what they had to offer. Below we have outlined ten reasons why you must prepare a catering company business plan. We explain how if you do take the time to prepare a plan you will be increasing your chances of being successful with your catering startup.

1) Start in the Right Direction

Many entrepreneurs think that they can start out without doing a lot of planning and research. They feel that they can always pick up a feel for the business as they go. However, some of the early decisions that you make in the life of your business can be difficult to reverse at a later date. You need to have a clear path set out ahead of you so that you can make the right decisions about how to set up the business right from the start.

2) Reinforce Your Ideas

As you slowly get ideas about the catering company that you want to start you will find that these thoughts start floating around in your head. What you imagine yourself doing is often very different from what you are able to do realistically. Nothing is impossible but you just need to work out how to get there.

By putting your ideas down on paper you will be clarifying them in your mind. As you write you will find that you do additional brainstorming. You may get new ideas about what you want to do with your business and you may decide that some of the ideas that you had initially are not really feasible.

3) Figure Out How to Do It

Every entrepreneur has a very idealistic image in their mind of the kind of business that they want. Getting to that point is a process though and you need to work out a path to get there.

One great way to figure out how you will proceed is to first write down what you want to do. Next, write down as many questions as you can about how you are actually going to do it. These will include questions like ‘Will I do on-site or off-site catering?’, ‘How will I get access to kitchen facilities?’ or ‘How many catering jobs will I need to land each month to break even?’. As you slowly work out the answers to the problems that you come across you can write them down in the appropriate sections of your business plan.

4) Know Your Startup Requirements

When you prepare a business plan you will get an accurate idea of exactly what is needed before you launch the company. You will need to consider all of the things that you will need to pay for prior to opening such as catering equipment, initial advertising and so on. When you have calculated the total cost you will then know exactly how much money you need and can look at where this funding will come from.

5) Increase Personal Productivity

You have to be organized when you start a business. Rather than writing things down on loose scraps of paper and hoping for the best you need to have somewhere to compile all of the important data that you collect. A business plan is ideal for this purpose. If you store the business plan as a document on your PC you can simply add new information as you come across it. If you have done your research and have all of you information stored in one convenient location you will be more organized throughout your business launch and you will avoid a lot of unnecessary headaches.

Find More Clients Being Active In Local Business

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Find Industry Groups / Business Owner Gatherings

Determining the type of companies and people that are required to develop the relationships needed to create successful joint ventures is the first thing required before identifying where to meet them. There are lots of places to find information about local business groups and trade shows for industry groups. A few Google searches for trade shows and a specific location will result in lists of venues and upcoming events. Attend relevant events that would be interesting for pursuing companies and individuals of interest to your business. One good source for finding local events is Meetup.com where there are plenty of business / entrepreneur focused groups where business owners get together to talk about business topics as well as industry groups that are interested in a specific niche, like software developers that get together to talk about industry topics.

Develop Relationships with Business Decision Makers

When at business functions and events as a small business owner it is best to focus energies on meeting and spending time talking with individuals that are decision makers. At business events and trade shows time can be wasted interacting with a sales rep that is just looking for sales opportunities. This can be good if there is an existing customer base for your business that aligns with their product or service, but if the desire is to locate new existing customers for a business through joint ventures, spending time with executive management is key and it’s best to avoid the typical sales rep just pitching products and services.

Establish Joint Venture Partnerships with Local Businesses

Reaching out to local businesses to become joint venture partners is a proven way to find more clients in a specific region. For most small business owners the focus is on servicing the local community with a product or service and so developing partners with other local businesses can quickly expand brand awareness to the right demographic of customers. Local business owners will be easier to develop relationships with regardless if a business is planning on only servicing a local region or planning an eventual national or global launch. It’s important that each joint venture is successful to build momentum in the market and maintaining strong communication between partners is more easily done when decision makers for each business are close enough to meet in person.

Things to Remember When Preparing Your Business for Sale

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key aspects of the preparation process are.

1. Stop Running the Business

Many buyers have been conditioned to think that a business cannot perform without the original owner. Many prospective purchasers are afraid that once the current owner leaves, the company will underperform and this fear prevents many businesses from ever being sold.

When preparing your business for sale it is a good idea to reduce the amount of time you spend running the business on a day to day basis. Most small businesses are built around the owner/manager which is why prospective buyers feel the business will falter once it has changed hands. If you can show that the business can operate profitably without you then you have a business with value that should sell for a premium.

2. Hire Managers

Buyers like stability and they dislike risk. One way you can decrease the perceived risk of acquiring your business is to put good managers in place. If you are able to hire managers and build in a chain of command that removes you from the day to day running of the business, while ensuring it still runs efficiently, you have taken away a significant stumbling block for many buyers.

A profitable business which comes with well-trained managers who know the business well, and are willing to continue running it from the day one, is an attractive proposition that many buyers will not pass up on.

3. Put Business Systems in Place

During the preparation period, aim to have all your business processes documented and working in a defined system. All business practices should be well-defined and each member of your organisation should have a clear role with a well understood job specification. Use the preparation period to build in systems which explain and document how each process of your business works and all employees should be well versed in how these systems work.

Building in systems is important as it will improve a buyer’s confidence and this will lead to better offers. A business that works smoothly and efficiently, with clearly defined processes and systems, is a positive for many buyers as this reduces the amount of time and resources they have to spend understanding and fixing inefficient practices.

4. Legal Issues

It is very important to settle any legal disputes or issues that may affect the sale of your business as any buyer worth their salt will conduct some form of due diligence if they are serious about purchasing your business.

Many deals have collapsed due to legal issues or disputes that the vendor has failed to sort out or disclose. If you are able to solve these issues prior to negotiations and due diligence you have paved the way for a successful sale. Issues such as lease agreements on property and equipment, outstanding payments or court settlements and other potential liabilities should be tackled prior to the negotiation period as these issues are notorious for collapsing deals.

Business Name Ideas

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The name is memorable

When brainstorming business name ideas, you want to choose a name that a consumer remembers for all the right reasons. A creative industry calls for a creative name such as ‘A Snip Above the Rest’ for a hairdressing salon or you may want to play on words such as ‘Bean Me Up Espresso’ for a coffee shop. However, for a business such as a lawyer or doctor, you may decide to keep the name more professional and more corporate sounding.

Choose a searchable name

In this internet savvy world, it is ideal to choose a name that has a domain name available and low competition on Search Engines. If you choose a catchy name that is similar to other businesses, you may find that your business name is buried in the search results even for your company name. The name should also be easy to spell and if possible, try and use a keyword. This works well for organisations such as the ‘Queensland Theatre Company’.

Choose a name with positive associations

A business name that is unsuitable for your industry or just plain inappropriate, distasteful or bordering on the offensive such as ‘Stiff Nipples Air Conditioning’ or just sounds like a rude word will reflect badly on your business. Many words have both denotation (literal meaning) and connotation (emotional meaning). Choose names that have positive associations and signify trust and authority.
Choose a name that won’t date

A name that may be fashionable here and now or have popular culture references may not be understood or relevant fifty years from now. When thinking about business name ideas, think of a name that is funky and fun if your industry allows for it but will also last the distance in the corporate world and won’t date. Your business name needs to grow and develop with your business (see below).

Make it easy to pronounce and spell

Unfortunately the reality is that if a customer cannot pronounce your name correctly, this may inhibit them from calling your business or using your services. It’s a barrier to sales that most companies do not need. However, there are always exceptions to the rule and a quirky company name such as ‘agent provocateur’ which sells lingerie and breaks a lot of the business name guidelines may enhance your business and add a certain savoir faire.

Why Start Your Own Business

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Why start your own business? Well, having your own business from home is an exciting prospect. You have the freedom to decide on the hours you want to work. The more time that gets invested productively in building and maintaining the business will ultimately translate into a greater financial turn-over for the business and increased personal profits for you.

Why start your own business; to take better care of your children. Many parents have also begun considering the work from home option. This is especially advantageous when there are still small children to be cared for. Parents have a dual role, one of caring for their family, and the other to ensure a secure income to their homes. By working from home and having the ability to manage time effectively, both roles can be managed without any lack of attention to their children. Parents that work from home not only save money from the high cost of day care but also have the peace of mind knowing their children are being cared for in the best way they know how to. So, this option to work from home is a winning scenario for both parents and their children.

Why start your own business from home? Well, because the internet has changed the business world in an immense way. Traditional successful business is associated with huge overhead costs; employee payroll and benefits, inventory, rent on the building, your time and energy 24/7. With an internet or online business all that is required is a small office space, a computer with an internet connection and a phone. With this innovation a home business does not need to invade the living space of your home, but can be maintained in a small area which can easily be separated from the rest of your home. You can run your business and still be a part of your family’s activities rather than being away at the office all day.

Having a marketing education and skills are attributes your home business will use for online marketing. Traditionally marketing and getting a marketing education can be expensive. However there are ways to affordably learn from others that have already been through the learning curve of running successful marketing campaigns. Successful marketing is a learned skill and the best way to learn is from business owners that already know how to run and manage successful businesses and have a great product for your marketing adventure. If you think that you could never possibly run your own online business successfully, think again. It’s simpler than you think when you find the teachers willing to show you how. Online marketing campaigns may be run without leaving the comfort of your home or spending years completing a bachelor’s degree in marketing.