3 Tips Every New Restaurant Entrepreneur Should Follow
Going into business for yourself is one of the most liberating, educational journeys in life that a person can take. You'll have the luxury of calling your own shots, with the challenge of having to support yourself and make the right decisions. Because restaurants are always in demand and provide high value to customers, many people consider this a rewarding business to go into. If you're considering taking a crack at the restaurant business, start by considering these tips.
Tip #1: Decide On Your Food Style And Theme
The best thing you can do when starting a restaurant is getting specific on who you are. While it doesn't hurt to sell many different food types, people need to know what to expect when they stop by for a bite to eat. For instance, even if you are an American food restaurant, you can narrow that down by getting geographically specific. A New Orleans themed restaurant would specialize in dishes like crawfish and Louisiana red beans and rice. There are countless other regional or ethnic specialties you could cater to depending on your experience in them — including Tex-Mex, soul food, burgers, seafood and state-based specialties.
Tip #2: Properly Fund Your Venture
When you're looking to get off the ground and up and running, the first logistical matter you need to knock out of the park is financing. Knowing how much you have to work with will directly affect the quality of restaurant you're able to open and the timetable in which you can expect to earn a profit. If you have quality credit, seek the best financing you can receive from your bank or credit union. While opening a new business has a "shiny, new" emotion to it, avoid the temptation to overspend on things like equipment and technology — which are part of mistakes most new restaurant owners make. You can always purchase high quality, discount, used or refurbished furniture and equipment, or start small from a technological standpoint.
Tip #3: Make Safety A Large Focus
Restaurants experience fires and lawsuits every year, so stay on top of your health and safety issues. Spare no expense with insurance related to lawsuits or fire damage. You want to be able to get back up and running as quickly as possible if you experience a fire or a lawsuit for food poisoning or other issues. Maintaining a quality assurance plan will be helpful with this. By the same token, do everything that you can to avoid fires and health problems. Invest in as many fire extinguishers as you need, keep them in plain sight and extensively train everyone how to use them. Offer rewards and incentives for displaying high-level safety knowledge and practice. A quality fire extinguisher can cost between $300 and $800. Keep your kitchen spotless after each and every workday and maintain stellar cleanliness to limit the spread of bacteria. Make sure every employee washes their hands thoroughly and wears the proper gloves and other safety equipment.
If you use these points, you are providing yourself a great start at any restaurant business you are opening.