Need A Mentor

Business By epiquerianmb Updated 21 Aug 2014 , 7:08pm by SunshineCarbs

epiquerianmb Posted 20 Aug 2014 , 5:14pm
post #1 of 15

Hello..I've started my home cake business and I do really good work; however I am eager to learn more and sit under qualified individuals who can and would like to share there wisdom with me. I live in the DFW TX area...so is there any cake mentors out there?

14 replies
shanter Posted 20 Aug 2014 , 6:41pm
post #2 of 15

Have you taken the Wilton decorating classes? They are usually given at Michael's and progress with complexity with each series. If you have a specialty cake shop nearby, they might post names/phones of people who teach decorating (mine does).

epiquerianmb Posted 20 Aug 2014 , 7:51pm
post #3 of 15

Hi Shanter-

 

Yes. I've taken the Wilton classes. I'm looking for more of a mentor that I can assist or run ideas by, while at the same time build my business.

Mimimakescakes Posted 20 Aug 2014 , 9:10pm
post #4 of 15

Have a look for a cake club in your area ,  someone else may know how to find out if there is one. I am in Australia so not sure about how to find one for you.  The club I belong to here is great for mentoring and helping each other out.  We try to take new decorators under our wings so to speak.  Sometimes you just need a fresh perspective on how to do something. We also tend to share our equipment and books as well as our knowledge . And there is something really special about being in a room full of people that just get you when you are gushing about some sugar technique . 

Gingerlocks Posted 20 Aug 2014 , 9:30pm
post #5 of 15

To be honest I can't really imagine a professional who either went to school or spent years working in the industry "mentoring" someone; you are basically the competition and I doubt people will be queuing up to give away all their knowledge and years of experience. So I would try taking some more classes; there is a lot more out there than the Wilton method; try some of the local collages they are a great resource. Just my opinion though :roll:

epiquerianmb Posted 20 Aug 2014 , 10:47pm
post #6 of 15

Hi Mimimakescakes-

 

Thanks for the feedback. I am actually a member of a cake club. So I guess I am moving in the right direction.

epiquerianmb Posted 20 Aug 2014 , 10:52pm
post #7 of 15

Gingerlocks-

 

The key word is "professional". If one is a professional, I don't see the harm or threat. I own another business that has nothing to do with cake decorating and I "mentor" professionals all the time in finance. I do not feel intimidated or think that they are my competition. I believe that the right person at the right time will come along for a season...not long term...just a season.

 

Isn't that what cake classes, seminars, clubs, and shows provide? Mentoring...

Evoir Posted 21 Aug 2014 , 4:31am
post #8 of 15

AI guess cake decorating isn't a big margin business. Most professionals are flat chat busy running their businesses. I'm not saying there wouldn't be someone out there willing to mentor you. I can understand what YOU would get out of such an arrangement. But what would be in it for them?

MimiFix Posted 21 Aug 2014 , 11:54am
post #9 of 15

CakeCentral members are already mentored by this community. As @Evoir mentioned, it's asking a lot for one person to spend their time and energy helping an individual.

Gingerlocks Posted 21 Aug 2014 , 2:10pm
post #10 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by epiquerianmb 
 

Gingerlocks-

 

The key word is "professional". If one is a professional, I don't see the harm or threat. I own another business that has nothing to do with cake decorating and I "mentor" professionals all the time in finance. I do not feel intimidated or think that they are my competition. I believe that the right person at the right time will come along for a season...not long term...just a season.

 

Isn't that what cake classes, seminars, clubs, and shows provide? Mentoring...

I think you are asking quite a lot, honestly. I just don't think anyone professional or otherwise would want to take time out of their buy scheduals to give you free information on how to improve your skills..and yes, become competition. I think it's quite naive to believe that anyone would not see you as competition..this is a business after all; with extremal tight margins. NO one in their right mind would say "let me help you grow your business and skill set, for free, and potentially take my customer". Its just not going to happen. 

epiquerianmb Posted 21 Aug 2014 , 2:46pm
post #11 of 15

Thanks for all the replies. Apparently the word "mentor" is not befitting for the cake industry; perhaps it should have been "partnership" or "team player". I never mentioned doing anythng for FREE!  in fact, I have volunteered my services to local organizations and that has gone really well. So what's in it for the next person,? Free help, services, and product, not to mentioned help with their budget/ taxes, ect. from me.

 

I guess I can see where one would not want to take the time, if that's all that they had going for themselve. I own a successful CPA firm, trucking company, and now launching my next business, in which WILL be just as successful, too.

 

Taking additional classes, continuing to participate in my local cake club, and "paying" for seminars is always an options, so that is the route that I will take.

 

Contrary to what one would think, there are people who will take others under there wings, whether it's cake or any other business endeavour.

 

And lastly, I was reaching out to people in TX, ONLY, not any other country...

Gingerlocks Posted 21 Aug 2014 , 4:56pm
post #12 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by epiquerianmb 
 

Thanks for all the replies. Apparently the word "mentor" is not befitting for the cake industry; perhaps it should have been "partnership" or "team player". I never mentioned doing anythng for FREE!  in fact, I have volunteered my services to local organizations and that has gone really well. So what's in it for the next person,? Free help, services, and product, not to mentioned help with their budget/ taxes, ect. from me.

 

I guess I can see where one would not want to take the time, if that's all that they had going for themselve. I own a successful CPA firm, trucking company, and now launching my next business, in which WILL be just as successful, too.

 

Taking additional classes, continuing to participate in my local cake club, and "paying" for seminars is always an options, so that is the route that I will take.

 

Contrary to what one would think, there are people who will take others under there wings, whether it's cake or any other business endeavour.

 

And lastly, I was reaching out to people in TX, ONLY, not any other country...

 

I'm sorry you seemed to take such offense to my comment. In the future I will keep my realism and knowledge about this industry and the people in it to the confines of my own national boarders. Again, apologies.  

MBalaska Posted 21 Aug 2014 , 6:52pm
post #13 of 15

mentoring is done within an organization, to the benefit of the organization and it's future operation.

ie. {a senior or experienced person in a company or organization who gives guidance and training to a junior colleague.}

SunshineCarbs Posted 21 Aug 2014 , 6:52pm
post #14 of 15

FWIW, a while ago I decided to just let anyone who wanted to come and watch me work do so for $10 an hour. I don't *teach* during that period the way I do when I am teaching my Wilton Method classes, or the way I do when doing my private classes (and before any other WMIs pounce, I work for a downline that allows me to teach anything that is not Wilton, I'm just not allowed to recruit in my classes).

 

But I'm happy for them to come and sit on a stool and keep me company, and explain what I'm doing as I do it. The $10 is just a lagniappe so I know they're serious, and also because I do go a little slower when answering questions. And I do let bakers who I consider more advanced than myself come and hang out while I work so we can talk and compare techniques.

 

It's actually not at all uncommon around here (here being the Boston, MA area) for professionals in the industry to extend courtesy of that nature to each other. I'm a licensed bartender, too, and while I don't do much of it anymore, I frequently used to guest 'tend, and have other bartenders in to the place I worked. Real professionals tend to recognize, "Sure, I'm providing the cake for this wedding, but they've hired Violette Bakery to provide all the GF baked goods, and Flour is providing the savoury pastries and working with the other local pros benefits us all."

 

So call around. Send over some cookies, and ask, as a professional, if they'd be willing to just let you see their kitchen. Offer your own. Don't be a dick if the answer is no. 

 

-Stephanie.

SunshineCarbs Posted 21 Aug 2014 , 7:08pm
post #15 of 15

Quote:

Originally Posted by MBalaska 
 

mentoring is done within an organization, to the benefit of the organization and it's future operation.

ie. {a senior or experienced person in a company or organization who gives guidance and training to a junior colleague.}

 

Actually, I left the computer industry about 5 years ago to work in food (bartending led to syrup development and then other food work before settling here), and I have always had industry mentors both within the companies I was working for and generally in the industry. I'm still in touch with some of the people who I mentored when I was actively working to get more women in STEM, and I actually still mentor them to some extent, when they touch base if they want my advice (some of them were teens in the mid-2000s when I was actively mentoring; while I can't help them with latest programming language changes, after 20 years in the industry (I started in my teens), I can help them with a lot of other things, even now.

 

I really recommend the experience, *whatever* industry you work in. Leave clawing each other's eyes out to the MBAs, it's what they study to do ;-)

 

S.

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