Well, there are probably layoffs coming at my place of work. I may be safe, I may be not. Who knows right now?
My field is not a particularly stable one at this point. The odds of finding another job in it are slim, particularly in this area. I've been thinking a lot about "reinventing myself," so to speak, and what I'd do if I did have to start over again. My DH works, so I'd have a bit of a lifeline for a small period of time.
I used to love my career -- the one I went to college for. That's faded under the weight of shrinking staffing and business stress. What do I love to do right now?
Cakes and cookies.
I don't know about starting a business myself in this climate, and I don't much want to work in a grocery store bakery. (I've heard some horror stories.) My training consists of four Wilton courses (really the only thing available in this area), and lots of learning-by-doing. And CC, of course.
So, my question: To those who own bakeries and employ other cake decorators, what would you be looking for? Should I put together a portfolio? Is my lack of formal training a problem?
Any advice is appreciated. I'm not going to make any leaps yet. Just trying to think about the future.
portfolios are good, dependability is what i look for most, i do wholesale to so just knowing how to frost a cake goes a long way. attention to detail, i have found that some people simply don't care because it is not their business, they just want a paycheck.
Have you tried a community college? They usually offer comprehensive courses for under $500...a portfolio is a good place to start, if you do engage a potential employer who is sincere you could offer to work on a trial basis so they can see if there is a comfortable work relationship happening there...good luck.
be prepared to work every weekend.
they will teach you if they think you can do it their way.
i've worked at a lot of different bakeries before opening up my place...
there is such a shortage of people who can decorate, you'll prolly get the job.
in a bakery setting they are all about speed, so you will learn a lot.
When I hire, I look for someone with basic knowledge, then I will teach them our methods. I look for someone who is dependable and has a creative side, besides a methodical side.
I have started doing a "working interview." They come in and work a day or two and get paid. I can usually tell immediately if they are going to blend in with our shop and style of decorating.
I would rather have someone with basics and teach them then try to "undo" bad habits.