If you are going to provide service on party catering Sydney you must set a standard so that you can maintain the quality of service your provide. Is your restaurant or catering service completely booked but you aren’t turning a profit? Do you have a wonderful menu, but no business? The food industry is one of the toughest industries to succeed in. Competition is fierce and people are fickle. Because of this, you need to do everything possible as an owner to make sure that your business is running at maximum efficiency and providing the highest quality services in your niche.
Though people in our business fail every day, the reasons for their failure can often be attributed to just a few issues that are relatively easy to resolve.
Here’s a list of reasons why food establishments fade quietly into the sunset and what you can do to prevent it from happening to you.
1. Know your costs! This is probably the number one reason why any business fails. I’m not talking about knowing how much salmon is per pound. I’m talking about knowing how much salmon is per pound plus how much it costs you to cook it, sauce it, serve it and wash the dish that you serve it on. These are all costs that must be considered when pricing every dish. It doesn’t matter if you sell the most luscious salmon in town in quantities that keep an entire fishing fleet busy if you aren’t making a profit doing it.
Also, practice portion control. This is a frequent oversight when estimating cost, and a black hole into which your money silently falls. If you have priced a pasta dish based on an eight ounce portion but your chefs are serving twelve ounces at a time, you are losing money.
2. Advertise efficiently! Sticking flyers on windshields in random parking lots is a waste of time and money. Take the time to know your target group and use your advertising dollars wisely. Participate in activities that showcase food. Many towns have a “Taste of the Town” event. It costs little to enter and you are putting your name out there to people who are specifically looking for what you have.
Pick one business near to your establishment every week and deliver lunch to them for free. Use some of your lower-cost but delicious menu items. You are accomplishing two things by doing this; you are establishing yourself in your community and you are getting people to try your food. Word of mouth is absolutely the best advertisement.
Establish an excellent internet presence. In today’s technological world, people often choose providers right off of their cell phones. If your name isn’t in the hat, it can’t be picked. Make sure that every word on your site is spelled correctly and that the site looks professional. Update it regularly. This doesn’t have to cost a lot but it should be at the top of your advertising list. Offer a member’s list so that you can send special offers and news. Many places offer a free birthday dinner to members. You may invest in one free meal, but remember that people don’t celebrate their birthdays alone! For you caterers out there, consider perhaps offering a discount to repeat customers for parties of a certain size.
3. Make sure that your restaurant or catering business is appealing to customers. This includes having a clean, pleasing environment, well-groomed and well-trained staff and quality literature. You never get a second chance to make a first impression. If a guest walks into your establishment and is greeted by a clean environment and friendly, knowledgeable people, you have already won half the battle.
Make sure that any literature such as menus or brochures are clean and professional looking. You don’t have to use a professional printer, but make sure that everything is spelled correctly and is easy to understand. Define your foods and services well. Finally, keep the place clean throughout service. Little things like stocking the bathroom or wiping down the bar make a huge difference in a guest’s experience. You want your last guests of the day to be just as dazzled as the first.
4. Know your limits! Many people try to do too much. A restaurant or catering business can be tremendously successful with a small menu as long as everything on that menu is fabulous. Trying to incorporate too many choices raises food costs, increases waste and overwhelms the guest. Pick what you do best and do it perfectly every time.
5. Listen to your guests! Talk to them. A glitch in their meal doesn’t have to turn into a disaster. It is how you handle that glitch that will make all the difference. This is where having professional, well-trained staff will serve you well. Use guest comment cards and exit interviews (for caterers) and pay attention. Look for trends, and make adjustments as necessary. People are more than willing to tell you what they think if you just ask, and what they think is what determines whether or not you will succeed. You can’t please all of the people all of the time, but you must please MOST of the people all of the time.
Many food businesses fail simply because people jump into them without educating themselves, or because they are too hung up on their own ideas to listen to what the people they serve are trying to tell them. In order to succeed in this business, you always have to keep one eye on the customer and one on the bottom line. Educate yourself and keep your mind open to suggestions. It can be time-consuming and frustrating to do this but in the end, your business will flourish and you will be proud.
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