After two years of remodeling a seperate kitchen in my home, I finally got my food licensed in Mchigan to do cakes. I want to advertise but I still have another full time job so I am afraid I might bite off more than I can chew. I would love to work this into a full time job. However, being Michigan in the financial state it is in, you don't dare give up a good paying job or jedorize it.
My question is: What do you wish you knew now, that you didn't know when you started your business given the above senerio?
Thanks Cake Central! I would never be where I am today without you!
I would advertise.. put a blurb in there saying space is limited or something like that. I stay home with my kids and much you like I got a 2nd kitchen licensed... it is in my detached garage.... when I 1st started I bit off more than I could chew... took too many orders thinking I needed money for this or money for that... I burned out fast... DH and I started having problems and the kids weren't getting my full attention... Once I woke up and realized that I have decided on doing xx amount of cakes per week.. well actually I set a goal to earn xx per week so I can have spending money, buy things for the kids, or even pay for the new camper trailer.... once I am booked for xx amount of cakes or xx amount of money... usually money happens 1st, I close orders that week... Perfect example happened today in fact.... I have 3 cakes and a set of CC strawberries to do this week (through Saturday) for pay and then DD's party cake for Sunday.... A friend of a friend (who DD is going to her son's party) calls today for a cake on this Saturday... I simply explained to her that I was booked through this week... I could tell it isn't what she wanted to hear but she understood....
I say all of that to say this..... set a goal for yourself 2 cakes per week or whatever..... calendar them on and do only that until you find what works well with your FT job and what is too much.... only you know what you can handle, but definitely advertise if you have the $$.... they don't know what your real schedule looks like, if you can't do it say you can't.... Mother's day is weeks away, this is an awesome time to get some orders! Good luck and Congrats on your 2nd home... hehehe I mean kitchen!
First off, CONGRATULATIONS on your new having your licensed kitchen. You know, this is the way I see it...you went through all the trouble to get licensed to get orders, right? And is it safe to assume that you eventually want this to be your full-time job? If so, start advertising! You can always specify hours of availability, what you can/can't do right now. You will never know how many people will call until you start advertising.
The good thing is that you are in control, because you will set up your business in the way that works for you.
Go for it! What's the worst that can happen...you get so many responses that you have to quit your full-time job to complete orders...and maybe make just as much or more money! Go for it! Good luck.
I'm working on my kitchen this year also, and I'd love to see some answers to this question as well. I'd like to get some strategies for advertising once i have my license. We plan to save up funds to supplement my income for a few months after I quit my job and my business is picking up. Congratulations on your license & kitchen, what a big achievement that is!!
I didn't know you could have a separate kitchen and work out of your home in MI. Do you know what the requirements are or where to direct me to find out?
I work out of a bakery, so I don't know if I'll be much help, but I do live in MI and I know the economy is bleak here!!! I was just on the internet and saw that there were 253 houses for sale in my small town--many of them foreclosures. I'd hold onto that daytime job as log as humanly possible! Luckily my husband is the breadwinner and I just make extra money at my job. I've thought about opening my own business, but not until the economy gets better, or we move out of state. If I were you I'd quit only after my business was bringing in pretty close to what I was making at my other job (unless you have a spouse who can make up the difference with his salary).
Good luck, and I wish you much success!!!!
I am happy to see someone from my area fulfilling their dreams!
I agree with jennifer7777 and SugarBakerz.
set a goal for yourself 2 cakes per week or whatever..... calendar them on and do only that until you find what works well with your FT job and what is too much.... only you know what you can handle
This is the best advice...I was going to say to learn how to say "no." Just don't take on too much out of fear that you won't have enough business. Also, don't be afraid to charge what your work and your time are worth. Don't undercharge just because you're afraid to tell people a higher price than the grocery store...As long as your work is good you'll find customers who will pay for it.
Thanks for everyone's advise. I was going only start advertising in my area. Schools and such. I agree with you on the setting a goal. That helps me a lot. Since I have already been doing cakes, I do have an idea of what I can do in a week and still work my day job.
In answer to Robinscakes- In Michigan, all food for sale must be prepared in a food license kitchen that is seperate from your home. The big thing is you must have a seperate entrance and they must not be able to gain entrance to your private living quarters. You need to contact Department of Agriculture for your county/city and talk with the inspectors. They are very helpful.
Thank you everyone! All excellent advise!
This is very interesting to me. How did you build a separate kitchen in your home? Did you convert your garage or something? I would love to see it. How exciting for you. I want to consider building one in my home, but don't know how. I wish I had a basement.....hmmmm ANy tips, advice....
hello, how did you go about getting your liscence?