3 answers

Is being a restaurant owner and an interior designer possible to do at the same time

Asked Cambridge, Massachusetts

Does anyone think it is possible to be a **Restaurant Owner** and **Interior Designer** at the same time? I want to do this but my navy life and my girlfriends mother thinks it is impossible. I need insight on this topic #design #interior #restaurant

3 answers

Jared’s Answer

Updated Palo Alto, California

Can you? Yes. Is it advisable? Probably not.

Being a restaurant owner, interior designer, and working in the navy seems nearly impossible, provided that you want to do any of them well. You would be pulled in too many directions to be very effective at any of them. That said, you might be able to do two, but with great effort. Managing a restaurant is an extremely difficult and time consuming activity, with large numbers of staff to juggle, opening and closing hours that are quite long, and fickle customers. Owning a restaurant may mean you are managing it, but it might also mean that you're the primary investor in a business that someone else is managing. The time obligations will be very different.

I want to address a possible underlying issue. You can do anything you want, but the challenge is to do something really well. If you love interior design, you could spend the better part of a career working to achieve mastery of that field. The same goes for work in the restaurant industry. Your family might be worrying that if you spread your attention too thin, you won't be able to achieve the mastery that is required for you to be very successful in your fields of choice.

There's good news too: if you decide not to work on two new fields at once, you could always build them up. If you think interior design is a strength, then build up an interior design business over a couple of years. Once it gets stable, and you're able to spend less time tending to the business, then open up your restaurant. It's not a foolproof way to achieve your dreams, but it's much more manageable. Most importantly, you'll have time to get really good and what you do. Good luck!

Jonathan’s Answer

Updated Katy, Texas

I want to reiterate what Jared shared concerning the restaurant industry. It is rare for an individual to be successful in the restaurant industry & ....anything else. It takes a lot of time, passion, and commitment to run a truly cost effective restaurant. Restaurant owners own a restaurant because they were already sucesful with another endeavor and merely invested - or because they run the restaurant as manager or chef.

My advice: don't get into the restaurant industry unless you have a passion for food. Follow your passion for interior design and work within the restaurant industry as a designer. One day, after some success, use those talents to support another who wishes to run a restaurant.

Thank you!

Joe’s Answer

Updated Sunnyvale, California

You certainly can do both. But you would first need to ask yourself why. It is possible to be a restaurant consultant who specializes in design and decor. Most large design firms have internships available. Owning a restaurant is a time consuming career path with that generally requires a large amount of money to get started and most fail within the first 4 years. Consulting and design on the other hand offer the chance to grow your professional network while determining exactly what type of restaurant you may want to open.