Tips On Time Management

Business By bakeforfun21 Updated 6 Jan 2015 , 7:18pm by cookiemum123

bakeforfun21 Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 4:34pm
post #1 of 25

I am still pretty new at cake decorating. I have a part time job, a 2 year old, and I am a full time student. I try to do cake decorating on the side but everytime I get an order that I have to deliver I am late. Every. Single. Time. Does anyone have any tips on time management so that I can get it all done and not be late? 

24 replies
-K8memphis Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 4:51pm
post #2 of 25

the easy answer is -- give yourself twice as much time as you think you need -- if you're late again give yourself three times as much time --

 

the in depth answer -- when i decorate a cake it takes me much less time than does the baking and assembly because of my experience -- most new cakers -- like i was way back when -- take eons of time to do every part of a cake especially the decorating because they get lost in the right side of the brain, the creative side where time does not exist -- so set a timer for 10 minutes, when it goes off set it again and again and gauge your progress while establishing mini goals all the way through your process so that you can operate in the creative side and still keep a toe hold on reality aka on the minutes ticking by --

 

the right side of the brain is also non-verbal -- ever say 'you are lost in thought' ever have someone speak to you while you're doing a cake and you don't answer them -- you're in the right side of your brain and your brain switches you back to the left side to answer --

 

a good book on this is "drawing on the right side of the brain" by betty edwards -- there's a you tube video on it and a lot of helps online as well

bakeforfun21 Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 4:54pm
post #3 of 25

Quote:

Originally Posted by -K8memphis 
 

the easy answer is -- give yourself twice as much time as you think you need -- if you're late again give yourself three times as much time --

 

the in depth answer -- when i decorate a cake it takes me much less time than does the baking and assembly because of my experience -- most new cakers take eons of time to do every part of a cake especially the decorating because they get lost in the right side of the brain, the creative side where time does not exist -- set a timer for 10 minutes, when it goes off set it again and again and gauge your progress while setting mini goals all the way through your process so that you can operate in the creative side and still keep a toe hold on reality aka on the minutes ticking by --

 

the right side of the brain is also non-verbal -- ever say 'you are lost in thought' ever have someone speak to you while you're doing a cake and you don't answer them -- you're in the right side of your brain and your brain switches you back to the left side to answer --

 

a good book on this is "drawing on the right side of the brain" by betty edwards -- there's a you tube video on it and a lot of helps online as well

Cool. Thank you.

melmar02 Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 5:39pm
post #4 of 25

When I first started thinking about selling, I started keeping track of how long it took me to do things. I started an excel sheet and starting listing out the tasks I did and the time it took me to do them - obviously mix batter, make icing, level/torte/fill, and cover in fondant were on there. I also listed things like stripes, small rose, large rose, etc. Then as I made practice cakes, flowers, figures, etc, I could add the times to the list. When I got my first real orders it was pretty easy to estimate the total time a particular design would take from those initial times I took.

MimiFix Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 5:53pm
post #5 of 25

Time management? You're a mom and a full-time student with a part-time job. I assume you also have household responsibilities and a personal life. If you enjoy cake decorating, my only suggestion is to give yourself a break. Keep cake decorating as a fun distraction and not as a business. 

bakeforfun21 Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 6:08pm
post #6 of 25

Quote:

Originally Posted by melmar02 
 

When I first started thinking about selling, I started keeping track of how long it took me to do things. I started an excel sheet and starting listing out the tasks I did and the time it took me to do them - obviously mix batter, make icing, level/torte/fill, and cover in fondant were on there. I also listed things like stripes, small rose, large rose, etc. Then as I made practice cakes, flowers, figures, etc, I could add the times to the list. When I got my first real orders it was pretty easy to estimate the total time a particular design would take from those initial times I took.

Neat. I hadn't thought of that.

bakeforfun21 Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 6:08pm
post #7 of 25

Quote:

Originally Posted by MimiFix 
 

Time management? You're a mom and a full-time student with a part-time job. I assume you also have household responsibilities and a personal life. If you enjoy cake decorating, my only suggestion is to give yourself a break. Keep cake decorating as a fun distraction and not as a business. 

I think I may have to do this. Just for a while. Luckily, I don't have any orders at the moment so this is the perfect time to do it. 

julia1812 Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 6:49pm
post #8 of 25

AWhen I have an order for let's say Saturday, I bake the cake on Friday and have everything (toppers etc) ready by then. I make the icing in the morning and put the cake together. Normally I'm done by lunch (depending on the design). If I feel it's too much work or the cake has to be delivered before Saturday lunch, I do parts or everything on Friday which means baking Thursday evening. Btw, you can bake and freeze cakes if that helps you. Same for (some) icings and fillings. And if you have similar design requests often, you can even prepare some flowers etc in advance! I also make fondant and gum paste in big amounts and store them. At the moment I have 4 orders for the next 10 days and I already finished all the prep work. I hate hearing the "tick tick" in the back of my head when I would rather focus on other stuff in my spare time...

Natka81 Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 8:10pm
post #9 of 25

A[@]bakeforfun21[/@], I have a 2.5 year old and the only time I can work on cakes only when she takes a nap. It is hard to manage time with little kids looks like they manage your time instead. I don't know how you have time for cakes if you are a student and have part time job. Do you even have time to manage? Take a long break and watch your child grow. I have 5 kids aged from 13 to 2.5. When I look at baby pictures of my 3 oldest kids I want to cry, that time flew by fast. You will have a chance to bake a cake but children are little only once in a lifetime.

Pastrybaglady Posted 29 Dec 2014 , 9:47pm
post #10 of 25

I always try to finish the day or night before the cake is due.  If things go wrong there's still time to recover and I can get the cake good and cold before delivery not to mention there's enough time for clean up. 

cakesbycathy Posted 30 Dec 2014 , 1:44pm
post #11 of 25

For a Sat cake:

I shop sometime Mon- Wed. 

Make frosting and fondant on Wed.

Bake on Thurs morning.

Fill and crumb coat Thurs night.

Decorate Fri. 

I do not go to bed until the cake is finished for the next day.  NO exceptions.  There have been plenty of nights where I did not sleep.

 

Honestly it sounds like you already have way too much going on to try and do this as a business.  Nothing will kill your reputation quicker than poor customer reviews and being late will get you one.  All it takes is one irate mom who will scream and yell about how your being late completely ruined the birthday party.  You're going to end up having to refund money because you didn't deliver on time.

cai0311 Posted 30 Dec 2014 , 5:19pm
post #12 of 25

AFor a Saturday cake I : Bake on Wednesday, make fillings Fill and crumb coat Thursday, make icing Ice and decorate Friday

There is no going to bed until the cake is done on Friday. Sometimes I get a full night's sleep and sometimes I have to pull an all nighter. Each order is different. But I never deliver a cake late by doing things this way.

Also, if the cake requires sugar flowers or handmade fondant/gumpaste items I try to make them in my spare time the weekend before they are needed. This help my Friday decorating schedule go smooth. And it gives me time to make extra items if I need them.

-K8memphis Posted 30 Dec 2014 , 5:35pm
post #13 of 25

just for the record, staying up all night is time mismanagement -- 

bakeforfun21 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 3:23pm
post #14 of 25

Thank you everyone for your help. I have decided to step back from selling cakes and just work on developing my skills. 

MimiFix Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 3:36pm
post #15 of 25

Sounds like a great way to slow down your schedule while increasing your skill level. Happy New Year!

cai0311 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 5:15pm
post #16 of 25

A

Quote:
Originally Posted by -K8memphis 

just for the record, staying up all night is time mismanagement -- 

 

That is not always true. I work full time so sometimes, from the very begining of an order, I know I will have to pull an all nighter to get the job done because of my day job schedule.

-K8memphis Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 5:28pm
post #17 of 25

you and i can respectfully disagree then -- no worries

-K8memphis Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 5:30pm
post #18 of 25

 

Quote:
 

1. Sleepiness Causes Accidents

Sleep deprivation was a factor in some of the biggest disasters in recent history: the 1979 nuclear accident at Three Mile Island, the massive Exxon Valdez oil spill, the 1986 nuclear meltdown at Chernobyl, and others.

But sleep loss is also a big public safety hazard every day on the road. Drowsiness can slow reaction time as much as driving drunk. 

 

http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/excessive-sleepiness-10/10-results-sleep-loss

cai0311 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 5:41pm
post #19 of 25

AChernobyl happened for several reasons, not just sleep deprivation.

But, it is great for you body? No. Will it kill me if a couple times a year I push the limits? No. At least not any faster than the sugar in my cakes will kill me :)

Natka81 Posted 31 Dec 2014 , 6:48pm
post #20 of 25

A

Original message sent by bakeforfun21

Thank you everyone for your help. I have decided to step back from selling cakes and just work on developing my skills. 

Smart decision.

cookiemum123 Posted 1 Jan 2015 , 5:41pm
post #21 of 25

AHello everyone. I'm very grateful to have found this forum. I loved the tip, to up your time if your still late...very practicle. And the excel sheet...setting my timer for that golden nugget! Thanks. Last but not least. I'm a mom of eight I stayed at home with my children up until a few yrs. ago...now I'm home again. Time management is a good skill for anything we want to accomplish. Anything is possible you just decide and work out the kinks as you go. I learned to make note of what works lol. At one point I was doing so many things I wasn't getting what mattered to me accomplished, that differs for everyone, right? I'm all for giving and I'm very happy to make reasonable sacrifices. So I tell myself and my kids safety first then let the fun begin! Happy New Yr.!

-K8memphis Posted 1 Jan 2015 , 6:38pm
post #22 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by cookiemum123 

Hello everyone. I'm very grateful to have found this forum. I loved the tip, to up your time if your still late...very practicle. And the excel sheet...setting my timer for that golden nugget! Thanks. Last but not least. I'm a mom of eight I stayed at home with my children up until a few yrs. ago...now I'm home again. Time management is a good skill for anything we want to accomplish. Anything is possible you just decide and work out the kinks as you go. I learned to make note of what works lol. At one point I was doing so many things I wasn't getting what mattered to me accomplished, that differs for everyone, right? I'm all for giving and I'm very happy to make reasonable sacrifices. So I tell myself and my kids safety first then let the fun begin! Happy New Yr.!

 

 

welcome to cc and amen to that ^^^ happy new year to you too!

cookiemum123 Posted 3 Jan 2015 , 5:36pm
post #23 of 25

Thank you for the welcome K8memphis:)

bakeforfun21 Posted 5 Jan 2015 , 1:48am
post #24 of 25

Quote:

Originally Posted by cookiemum123 

Hello everyone. I'm very grateful to have found this forum. I loved the tip, to up your time if your still late...very practicle. And the excel sheet...setting my timer for that golden nugget! Thanks. Last but not least. I'm a mom of eight I stayed at home with my children up until a few yrs. ago...now I'm home again. Time management is a good skill for anything we want to accomplish. Anything is possible you just decide and work out the kinks as you go. I learned to make note of what works lol. At one point I was doing so many things I wasn't getting what mattered to me accomplished, that differs for everyone, right? I'm all for giving and I'm very happy to make reasonable sacrifices. So I tell myself and my kids safety first then let the fun begin! Happy New Yr.!

Welcome to cake central. It is so helpful for pretty much anything  baking related.

cookiemum123 Posted 6 Jan 2015 , 7:18pm
post #25 of 25

AThank you for the welcome bakeforfun21.. over the weekend I got to take a look at another board and learned the right film to get to place Chocolate on a cake...absolutely fantastic!

Quote by @%username% on %date%

%body%