About this module
Learn from industry professionals as they share experiences and valuable tips that every budding food business should know. We also talk to some home bakers and get them to discuss their growth from hobby to full-time brand. Find out more about the essential skills and goals to set, along with important management tools that’ll benefit your business in the long run.
Growing up, each of us have someone we look up to or aspire to be.
Whether it is the popular student in school, the athletic classmate or even our superiors at work. If we aspire to be a successful entrepreneur, one of the ways we can start is to learn from those who have succeeded.
A research was done in 2018 identifying the common traits shared by successful Chef-Entrepreneurs in Klang Valley, Malaysia and we would like to share these top tips with you.
The first common trait of these successful chef-entrepreneurs is to have Passion in what you do. Undoubtedly, having passion for what you do is the fuel to keep you going on your road to a successful venture.
The second trait is to develop your art. Food in itself is an art: we consume with both our eyes and mouth. Whether it is a commercial scale production or artisanal products, ensure that you have the skills to produce the product that you want, consistently.
I started this business when I was in form 3 near school. I started selling cupcakes near the school. Like everyone for a good feeback. Everyone says oh you make it again, bake it again.
I continued to study I took the Malaysian Skills Certificate in Pastry Arts for about 1 year. And then I intern, and then after I intern I started to do Alia and Her Cakes, full time.
The third trait common successful chef-entrepreneurs share is to have a mentor. Get in touch with someone experienced in your field, to advice you and share their thoughts with you.
A little advice goes a long way.
Right now we have a team of 18. So how I manage is I learn from my business coach. I always believe in mentorship, it’s like going to tuition. I have different mentors for marketing and business. When I started I didn’t know how to do business. I didn’t know how to post a job ad. So I will ask friend’s friend. Hey, you got anyone? I would go to my school, my ex-lecturer, hey you got anyone who wants to work? That’s how we started.
Next is to be committed to your Goal: knowing what you would like to achieve, and being resilient. Understand what you want to achieve in your home baking venture and why you’re doing it: is it to realise your food dream? a stable source of income? or perhaps even as just a side income.
My goal is I want to help more people, so more people can get job opportunities. And also I want to expand my business, a bigger baking studio so I can cater more customers and cater more orders. Also, many people can get job opportunities.
The fifth common trait of successful chef-entrepreneurs is to pick up business & management skills. Being a great baker doesn’t mean you will be guaranteed a successful venture. If you’re running a business, you need to know how to produce, market and sell your products. Managing finances and legal matters also come into play. We will cover these in the upcoming modules as well.
For a start, of course i think everybody knows equipments are not cheap. So we started up with 2 single oven and 1 working table and 1 mixer. So, then only throughout the months we expanded to add on heavy equipments.
Next is to find a balance in time: between work and the business. Investing the right amount of time in your venture and your personal life is important because it creates space for creativity and productivity in both aspects.
Before this I open for order everyday. At one point I feel I have no time for rest or for my family and friends. Then I decide to close orders on Monday because I think Monday is not so busy and not many people order cake on Monday. Because people usually celebrate birthdays and all towards the weekends. So that’s how I manage my time.
The seventh trait is to build your image as a home baker/entrepreneur. This may be a little unconventional, but it’s true. Many times, we associate a brand to the business owner. For example, if you think Apple, you think of Steve Jobs. In the home baking scene, part of the factors of success for some home bakers is because they have a story to tell. People tend to remember your brand through a story, and in this instance, you can be the story of your brand.
The last stage of the research done on successful chef-entrepreneurs is achieving success.
I always have a personal quote which is “Believe In You That Believes In Yourself” . Whatever you dream that who you can be, it’s really possible if you put in the work. In reality, everything at first is very tough, but if your dream is big enough, that shouldn’t be something holding you back. So, again if you have the dream, Fight for it!
Every individual has their own definition of success. In essence, there are no dreams too big or too small. Best of luck!
Now that you know what makes a successful entrepreneur, stay with us in the upcoming module as we share with you the tools to manage your business!