Saturday, July 25, 2009


This blog isn't only about pretty pictures, I also like to discuss running a small business, the ups and downs... 

I've worked a lot of jobs... a lot of restaurant and retail while I was younger. I'd go in, do my job, and leave. If a nice sunny beach day came up... well, maybe once in a while, I'd call out to do something fun. It didn't really matter... it was just a job. 

Then, during college, I worked for a restaurant that handled things differently. We had a quick staff meeting before every shift. They would have us taste the specials of the evening, introduce a new wine or cocktail, tell us how much they made the night before and what they needed to make that night. They would let us know how the budget was tracking, whether hours were too high, sales too low, etc. They would have upsell contests to raise check averages, all kinds of things to make us feel a part of the company, and I loved it. I really felt like part of the team. It made me feel important and responsible to the company. If they were slow you knew you could ask for the day off and not be hurting anyone, if you knew they were busy, you went in even if something better had come up. You tried your best to upsell drinks or add on dessert to the check. Knowing all that information made me want to do more.  

So, that's how I've decided to run my business. The staff knows how much each cake sells for, how much it costs to make them and what kind of profit we make on them. They know if we're having a bad week or a good week. They hear the praises and complaints of customers. I try to make them feel like they're part of the business. I also hope that it will give them some useful background and insight if they ever decide to open their own store. (Far away and a long time from now ! ;) 

Some people don't agree with this style. They believe your business should be yours, your profits or losses should be yours, staff shouldn't know how much is coming in and out. I don't know why they feel this way, but it seems like a common practice. 

Personally, I like the open discussion. 

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