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What is it like to own a café?

After earning a sufficient amount of funds, I wish to open up my own café.
1) What are good locations to open one.
2) What experience do I need.
3) Do I need to know about coffee and pastries.
4) What is the best way to attract customers.
5) Do I need a degree.

#cafe #coffee #career

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Doc’s Answer

Mary running a restaurant requires management skills like any other business, though there are unique regulations you'll need to comply with in the food service industry. Whether you have culinary skills or plan to hire your entire kitchen staff, you can learn the intricacies of owning a food and beverage establishment through several public and private schools that offer associate, bachelor's and master's degrees in hospitality and restaurant management. You can find programs that focus solely on business management in the restaurant industry or choose one that also infuses culinary arts within the curriculum.

Restaurant owners perform a variety of restaurant duties such as hiring and firing staff, bookkeeping, cooking, waiting tables, and addressing customer complaints. Although there are no restaurant owner education requirements, knowledge of the restaurant industry and business practices is beneficial. By starting out as part of the kitchen staff, waiting tables, or being a counter attendant, you gain the necessary training needed for owning a restaurant. There are required licenses, permits and approvals that must be obtained to open a restaurant. Key skills that are required to be a restaurant owner include strong leadership, organization, problem solving, communication and customer service. It's also important that you have stamina, willingness to work long hours, ability to resolve conflict, and attention to detail and knowledge of legal issues regarding wages, worker safety and consumer protection.

Estimate the total startup costs you will need to get your restaurant started and the amount needed to keep your restaurant functioning on a day-to-day basis. You should then create a budget and predict the next year to know how much you will need to stay in business. After this, assess how much money you have available to use as startup funding, and determine how much more you will need. Remember to include the costs of any licenses you need. Consider applying for restaurant loans to obtain funding to cover your restaurant’s costs. When choosing a location for your new restaurant, the following features are among the most important:
• VISIBILITY & ACCESSIBILITY – Select a spot that can be seen by those driving or walking by. You should also look for an area that gets plenty of passersby on foot or in cars. In addition, consider if there is parking and ease of access by foot or car.
• KNOW YOUR COMPETITION – Some nearby competition can help with marketing. But it’s wise to have enough of a distance that you can still guarantee a solid pool of customers who won’t be easily drawn to another similar place. Ensure the target market of your restaurant matches the demographics of the area.

Restaurant owners make sure that the restaurant meets all state and local laws and regulations. Although the requirements and types of licenses and permits vary from state-to-state, common licenses include a food service license, local business license, name registration, creation of a business entity, proof of worker's compensation insurance, zoning approval and building permits, equipment permits, police and safety inspections, approval from the fire marshal, and a liquor license for any restaurant that serves alcohol. Restaurant owners must also research and be familiar with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) laws and regulations regarding safety in the workplace, such as keeping the workplace clean, using non-slip mats in key areas, and maintaining all electrical appliances.

Mary getting your new restaurant off the ground can feel like a daunting task. However, as the restaurant industry continues to grow, and foodservice trends continue to diversify, there is always room for another extraordinary eatery. With detailed planning and successful execution of your unique ideas, your restaurant business can flourish.

Hope this was Helpful Mary

Doc recommends the following next steps:

PICK THE PERFECT LOCATION – Most experts believe that a restaurant’s success depends largely on its location. When opening a restaurant, don’t rush the process of finding that perfect location. Highly visible locations have an advantage. You become your own billboard, showing everyone driving or walking by that you’re a great place to dine. Be sure to add outdoor seating if you can (you’ll boost sales by up to 30%).
BRAND YOUR RESTAURANT – Whether you’re opening a restaurant or any type of business, you need a strong brand. It involves everything from your restaurant name to the fonts you use on your menu. Branding gives businesses personality, makes them more memorable, and drives customer loyalty – along with profitability to the tune of a 23% revenue increase. Before opening a restaurant, fully flesh out your brand. Start with your name. It should be Unique, basic is boring.
MASTER YOUR MENU – Unless your goal is to be the next Cheesecake Factory (please, say that’s not your goal), limit your menu offerings. Research suggests fine dining restaurants should aim for 7-10 items per category, fast casual a tighter 6 items in each category. Categories refer to apps, mains, sides, and desserts. Menu pricing is a something you should study up on before opening a restaurant. Learn how to run the simple food cost formula so you can price for profitability.
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Tom’s Answer

Hi Marry, I used to own a bar/restaurant and my advice to you is don't do it. If you are really determined then the suggestions John gave you are exactly on point. But owning and running a cafe is exceedingly more risky than it appears. The hours are very long (usually for 7 days a week), the competition fierce, the health and sanitation codes are strict and usually enforced, and your daily number of customers can vary greatly. . You can bust your butt and have little to show for it later. And if you are the owner then you are essentially the last one to get paid...if there is enough income. And there likely won't be enough for a long time after you get started. Sorry to be a downer, but this is a very hard business with which to make a living. Been there. Done that. Don't.