5 Things Every New Caterer Should Know
It has been over twenty five years since I started a small catering company that specialized in International Tapas, tiny silver trays of finger foods to delight the eyes and satisfied the stomach. These little morels were tasty, light and filling. At the time I did not know the little delicacies I placed on the buffet would give way to a very traditional way to dine. I just thought my customers should be exposed to something a little more exciting than Wing-Dings and Swedish Meatballs. I really wanted to move away from serving full means and introduce my customers to a variety of food from all over the world.
Today with food being the number one American pass-time, catering has come full circle, and even a novice cook with the right recipes, a good head for business and a charming personality can start a small catering service to address the needs of the corporate/business world and the new breed of entertainers that frequent theatre houses and night clubs. It's no secret that when a band or theatre group hits a town, they are often looking for a great place to eat and if you can offer a unique dining experience all the better.
If you think becoming a caterer is something you might want to consider, assess your skills and talk to professional caterers in your community. You may want to volunteer for a couple of events to get your feet wet or sign-on as a part-time helper. Caterers are always looking for good people and smiling faces.
After jumping in feet first and discovering that catering is your thing there are a few things you must know and understand about this profession.
1. It takes time to establish your business. You are going to be salesperson, marketing expert, advertising specialist, cook, clean-up person, baker, banker, accountant and driver all rolled up in one. This is a good thing because in the beginning you must know every aspect of your business before you can turn it over to hired help.
2. Study your craft. Never assume you know it all, you don't. Learn about food safety, food presentation, napkin folding and formal food etiquette. Letitia Baldridge's Executive Guide to Manners will help you glide graciously through those formal catering events. The book is not about food, it's about etiquette and when you read through it you will understand why I recommended it.
3. Always have a signature dish and give the recipe to no one. My signature dish was a dessert; it was an Old Irish Whiskey Cake. I would serve it at every formal event and always had request for the cake to be shipped to family and friends of the host.
4. Network and establish good relationships with the owners of bridal and floral shops, photographers, funeral home owners, food editors and alumni associations. Why? Because these folks are in the same business you are, the service industry and they all make a living working with the public. Nurture these relationships and you will go far.
5. Always have a contract and get your money up front. Food is perishable. Make sure your down-payment covers the cost of the food. You can return tablecloths and silverware, but food can and will self-destruct.
Remember any job worth doing is worth doing well. Caterers need a cool head, a sharp mind for business and a winning personality. If you are missing any one of those attributes, hire a partner with the strengths you lack. Start small and give yourself time to grow. You will make mistakes, forget things and things will not go as you anticipated. This is all part of going into business. You will however make a lot of people very happy and introduce folks to new flavors and foods. As with any profession you learn by doing it, over and over and over again.
D.D. Davis is a writer with over 20 years of experience, and has produced a series of e-Books that support parents in creating a good life for their family. Detra may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by mail at J. Davis & Associates Publishing, P. O. Box 44782, Detroit, MI 48244-0782, Attention: D. D. Davis. To learn more visit: http://www.supportingourchildren.com
Should You Lie On Your Resume?
Warning: Lying on your resume could cost you your job and your freedom.Picture this. You're sitting at your desk working away happily at a company you've been employed with for ten years. You've had several promotions and you're now a Sr. Assistant Manager.You've got your eye on a top management position, which everyone says you're a shoe-in to get. Your future looks bright, indeed. So, when the boss calls you into the office for something extremely important, you as...(related: Employment)
Inside Sales Jobs: A Job Worth Seeking?
Are you interested in inside sales as a career? Inside sales can be a very rewarding job if you so choose. What is the difference between inside and outside sales positions? If you think the difference is staying out of the sun, read on and discover if or why an inside sales job could be for you.With inside sales you will need to not only sale a product or service, but be a representative for it as well. You will most likely be required to be on call to s...(related: Employment)
Interpersonal Skill Building -- Yank The Suckers & Weeds
According to the National Gardening Association, suckers are rapidly growing shoots rising from an underground root or stem, often to the detriment of the tree. They can be very irritating and annoying for they bear no flowers or fruit. Rather than cut them off, one way to get rid of them is...(related: Employment)
Resume Writing Dos And Donts
Do these thingsInclude your full name - don't use nicknames or abbreviationsUse a telephone number that you can always answer - use a cell ...(related: Employment)
For many people, interviewing is not a natural act any more than going on a blind date is. You are asked a bunch of ...(related: Employment)
It Is Still Possible To Be Upwardly Mobile In America!
Yes, it's still possible to be upwardly mobile in America: it's called a career in sales.Sales jobs come in all shapes and sizes. From the lowest telemarketer to the global strategic accounts managers, sales is what makes a company successful.Today, the need to find sustaining careers is a hot topic for everyone in the labor force. Yet, every business owner I know is constantly lamenting the lack of good, effective salespeople.What makes people unwilling to go into sales? How can we show people tha...(related: Employment)
How To Access Employers Through Proposal Marketing
Use Proposal Marketing and you'll be your own hot spot, opening gateways previously inaccessible. Hook up with those who have the power to hire you. Present a history or e...(related: Employment)
Hair Dressing As A Career
Since the world started hair has been a very important aspect of individual personality and with the change in time hair has emerged as a big form of self expression for both men and women.In todays world everyone wants to look beautiful, everyone wants to get compliment from their friends and its a well known fact that when you look good you feel good and then you work better. In today's modern world peoples are most sophisticated-more educated and more fashion conscious whether male or female.Hair dressing industy is a huge growth area all over the wor...(related: Employment)
The Five Most Common - And Most Avoidable - Résumé Errors
Writing an effective résumé can certainly be challenging. There are numerous rules and none of them apply 100% of the time. It is often much easier for people to craft their document if they understand the boundaries within which they will need to operate 100% of the time - the mistakes that should never be made and will brand a job-seeker as unprofessional. Eliminating all of these errors from your résumé will go a long way in improving your chances of securing an interview.1. "Responsible for..."The Problem:This is one of the most common, and most amateurish, résumé errors. There is no greater example of weak, passive writing than the overused "responsible for."There are two base reasons...(related: Employment)
Students Searching For A Job
Searching for a job has become easier than ever for those who are graduating from school and looking to enter the workforce. Many schools offer guid...(related: Employment)
Getting Past Fear
Have you gotten tons of career advice, solicited and unsolicited? You nod when you hear it and think, "Yeah, I know this stuff." So, what else is new?But what have you done with the advice? Fess up. Probably very little.Do any of these scenari...(related: Employment)