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Advice on convincing family to give me a chance!

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
So I'm very new to decorating, but honestly I improve so much with each cake. One look at my photo gallery will show you that I need MAJOR more improvement. But here's the thing... I'm obsessed with baking (since a kid) and I hate my job (legal secretary) and I want to bake and be happy! I just found out a few days ago that my uncle's girlfriend and her mom bought a restaurant. I feel like this is my chance to bake for money. Question is: How do I go about approaching them on the idea?

Here is what I was thinking, and tell me if you have other ideas or if this sounds dumb..

First, I was going to go to the restaurant and grab a copy of their menu. During this trip, I was going to give them a peanut butter filled chocolate torte as a "Good Luck on the new business" gift.

I was going to peruse their menu and come up with desserts that would compliment it. (It's just a hamburger place - but I think they do dinner specials! icon_biggrin.gif )

Then I was going to do a sample tray and take it over there and broach the subject.

But also I'm wondering how I'll get paid? I have 2 little kids (2 y.o. and 5 mos) and I'd love to work nights after my hubby gets home and bake at night or maybe early mornings at the restaurant. But do I get paid per dessert?

The lady at my local cake decorating store suggested just donating a few cakes, cheesecake and maybe another kind, and seeing if they sell and kind of going from there.

I'm so excited about this "possibility" of a new future - but I'm trying not to get too excited in case they tell me no.

Pretty much everyone loves my baking, I just have to improve on the decorating. I have a lot of confidence, even though I know I need a lot of work. I think I have the talent and passion to be really great at this and to make a ton of dough someday. Some of my family members are giving me a hard time and saying things like I should have thought about switching careers before I had kids. It's really depressing to hear stuff like that.

Please give me some advice!!!
Thanks.
post #2 of 22
We support you on this! I personally would pm Indydebi for advice. She caters as well as does cakes. She would most likely have some useful insight and tips for you.
Best of luck to you.
Amy
THAT WILL BE $6,000.00 PLEASE. THANK YOU, COME AGAIN.
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THAT WILL BE $6,000.00 PLEASE. THANK YOU, COME AGAIN.
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post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
Okay, good idea. Thank you!
post #4 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by keonicakes

We support you on this! I personally would pm Indydebi for advice. She caters as well as does cakes. She would most likely have some useful insight and tips for you.
Best of luck to you.
Amy



I totally agree.

We are behind you. I have 3 kids, 5, 3 and 3 months. I was in the IT business before staying home with my boys. I would love to open up a shop or join someone in one. I'll probably never make as much as I did, but I would be so happy baking and decorating!

PM Indydebi, she is great, she has lot of knowledge and might provide other names for you to contact.

Good Luck.
Practice Practice Practice.
Life is short, enjoy what you do!
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Practice Practice Practice.
Life is short, enjoy what you do!
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post #5 of 22
I think you've got it pretty well laid out. Take in samples and suggestions based on what you believe will benefit THEM. Make it all about THEM! The best salesman is the one who can show you all the reasons you need what he's got!

Have ready what you believe will be their profit margin. I don' t know if you plan to sell them what you do or come in and let them pay you by the hour for what you do. That would have to be something the two parties negociate, after you've proved yourself to be a valuable asset.

Have a plan. Go for it!!
When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, "I used everything you gave me". Erma Bombeck
~~~
If God is for us, who can be against us?
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When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, "I used everything you gave me". Erma Bombeck
~~~
If God is for us, who can be against us?
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post #6 of 22
I've learned the hard way...family, especially parents, don't want to see their kids take chances. They would rather see you unhappy at a steady paying job, than to risk the paycheck for a shot at a happier life. I had to break away from the extended family this summer. I got SO SICk of hearing all the comments. My husband and I have been so much happier and wonder why we didn't do it sooner.

Take the cakes over. I'm sure they'll love them. Good luck to you!!
post #7 of 22
First, always remember that family members are the last ones who encourage and push us to pursue our dreams. Most are stuck in the "get a job, work 40 years, collect your gold watch, die" kind of thinking.

And what is this noise about "should have switched careers before you had kids"? icon_eek.gif Just like I said above .... they think you get a job and work there 40 years. well I got news for ya, babe! That law firm decides to shut their doors 15 years from now, you are then a middle aged women with kids in high school looking to switch careers!!!!!! there are no guarantees, so I've NO idea what the heck they are thinking!

I have (let's just say "a relative") who is Negative Nancy all the way, on all things. We are working on a new venture and he of course had nothing but gloom and doom advice. My attitude is "If I had let other people make my decisions for me, then I'd be bankrupt instead of being blessed with this kind of success."

In the words of George Bernard Shaw: Those who say it cannot be done, should stop interrupting those of us who are doing it!

You have lots of options, really. (btw, I really like your grad cake!). I think the samples are a very good idea. It's the first thing they would want to know, can you bake?, if they are going to put your stuff in their shop.

You need to come up with a reasons of why this idea is a good thing for THEM. They could care less about giving you a space to enhance your skills. What's in it for THEM? What's the benefit for THEM?
- fresh baked desserts instead of the same 'ole same'ole that other restaurants have.
- a variety of items, that cause their customers to come in asking "What did she make today?" It's a reason that customers will talk about their place and will tell their friends about the place.
- perhaps a rotating menu ..... Monday is Boston Creme Cake; Tuesday is Peanut Butter Cake with Choc icing, etc. There can be other things available, but they only get peanut butter cake on TUESDAY! (I plan my lunches around daily specials at some of my favorite places!). It keeps the customers talking and gives them a reason to come back.
- As they grow and possibly get into catering, they wil need an array of desserts. Even if they just start with a call-in order for 15 for a large office, they will eventually grow (and you always phrase it as they WILL grow....) into larger caterings and how convenient would it be to have a decorator right there on staff?

So....options:
Offer to work as an employee, making their baked goods. This will give you a great opportunity to practice, in a real kitchen (wow, what a difference that makes!), and hone your skills.

Offer to work not as an employee, but they give you the use of their kitchen and you give them a heck of a price on the desserts you create.

Offer to work on a see-how-it-goes basis (I think someone suggested that already). They can try adding the desserts to the menu, and if it works ... great. If it doesn't ... well, we're back to the drawing board.

but the key points are to make sure your selling points are how it's good for THEM, and don't hint around, don't beat around the bush, just go up to them and say, "I've got a proposition for you."
post #8 of 22
Yeah! What she said!!! icon_lol.gif

That is absolutely wonderful advice.....

indydebi - We love and admire your strength! You inspire us!


Amber0717,

I wish you all the best! I have 3 young ones also 5, 3, & 1. I know how you feel, so much passion and so little support! But, maybe with a little patience and a lot of prayers, it'll all work out for ya! icon_biggrin.gif

Keep us posted!
"Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid, for the Lord God is my strength and my song; He also has become my salvation."
Isaiah 12:2
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"Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid, for the Lord God is my strength and my song; He also has become my salvation."
Isaiah 12:2
Reply
post #9 of 22
It is so strange for me to hear everyone saying that parents and family are the last to encourage you to take chances!! I guess my family is wierd! My dad is now picking out buildings for me to "open up shop" Maybe he just wants free goodies icon_smile.gif He has been encouraging me to open a bakery for some time now! Even before I started doing cakes.
I will have my cake and eat it too!! Unless my kids get to it first.
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I will have my cake and eat it too!! Unless my kids get to it first.
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post #10 of 22
thumbs_up.gif YOU CAN NOT FAIL IF YOU DO NOT TRY. I say go for it....If we all had to rely on 'family' icon_rolleyes.gif we would all be in the nuthouse, rofl......My dh is DELIGHTED that I am home.....heck, he even does a LOT of the prep work for me......he is happy that I am happy doing what makes me CONTENT and eventually, will make some $. icon_smile.gif Can not beat that! thumbs_up.gif
I have just quit a FT job in retail in the past month......and am home with my legal bakery. So far........ 2 bridal consults with bookings for next year, 5 birthday cakes, anniversary cake booked for December, another birthday cake due tommorrow.....it's starting out. And I have just taken out a 13 week ad in one of the local papers.......my first advertising! I got all the above WITHOUTH advertising......WORD OF MOUTH and others tasting your products is what sells you in this world!

I commend you and will stand behind you all the way........YOU CAN DO IT!!! icon_biggrin.gif
post #11 of 22
I wouldn't worry too much about "intricate" decorating skills for restaurant wholesale...if this is what you want to get into, you have to decide how you are going to cost out your time effectively. Sure, the cakes have to look nice going in, but they don't have to look like a wedding cake either!

Think about how you are going to churn out multiple cakes down the road when the restaurant calls and orders 10 of the Tuesday cake, and 7 of the Wednesday cake, and 5 of the Thursday cake...you see where I'm going? Decorate your cakes simply so that you know you can make them quickly on an assembly line if need be!!

A friend of mine used to do strictly wholesale baking for delis around town, and baked about 20 cakes a week - the only way she did it was to keep the decorating simple.

Good luck! thumbs_up.gif
What we learn with pleasure we never forget.
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What we learn with pleasure we never forget.
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post #12 of 22
It is inevitable that someone is going to be a balloon buster, so I will be as gentle as possible, and just give you a heads up on what may happen.

Although your ambitions are great, do not be disappointed if the restaurant does not purchase your goods.

Where I live, restaurants which purchase desserts from outside the facility must be able to show the health department receipts from registered businesses, or risk losing their license.

Good Luck, though.

Theresa icon_smile.gif
post #13 of 22
Thread Starter 
I appreciate all the advice - even the cautionary type. I think indydebi has a great idea with the different cake each day type of suggestion. I was already trying to figure something out along those lines. I was thinking dessert of the month, but the "regulars" might get tired of the same cake all month, so I think that's a great idea - day to day.

I think this could benefit them immensely in that when I go to a restaurant, being the sweets lover that I am, if the desserts just sound "ok" I don't bother ordering - not a good waste of my calories or money for something "ok". If I see an impressive dessert menu or something that sounds absolutely irresistible - than I basically CAN'T RESIST and I order. I intend on offering things that are absolutely irresistible.

I agree the decorating will be kept simple. However, it will get my name out there and I'll get practice doing production baking.

Now I have a new opportunity which has come my way. My instincts tell me to go for it! I'd like your opinions. I have a feeling I'm going to get some mixed feedback.

Here is the email I received from someone responding to my email for a bakery position job:

"Thank you for taking the time to answer our ad; unfortunately we are looking for a experienced baker to fill the posted position and your background lacks the experience to manage a bakery.

However, we do appreciate the sincerity of your correspondance and understand the shared passion for baking. One of the consequences of not having direct baking experience is not understanding the realities of the baking business and the hard work involved. Many people enter the business with sincere motivation but are not able to thrive once there.

With this in mind we are have a terrific opportunity for you to explore your passion. We are extending to you an offer for a 3 month internship working under the direct supervision of a NY CIA trained bakery chef - namely me! You will literally be working side by side with me learning how to bake cookies and pastries from a prefessionally train bakery chef.

This NOT a paid postion. What this does give you is an opportunity to learn about the business from the ground up and to pursue your passion for baking. After this internship is over you should be in a position to realistically assess if pastry baking is the profession for you.

This can be a part time postion, but it must be a set schedule with a minimum of 10-15 hours a week. You also get a discount on the merchandies."


For 10 hours a week, I think I should go for it. This is after all a hobby also. What do you guys think? (There is a possibility she could be trying to take advantage of me not intending on teaching me anything but on having me do some grunt work for free. I think I may risk it.)
post #14 of 22
Man, I would give my nondecorating arm for an opportunity like this! Even if you just get to do the grunt work, you will get a feel for how a bakery actually works. Go for it girl - but keep the other option open as well.

Joy
1 Husband, 2 children, 3 dogs ...
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1 Husband, 2 children, 3 dogs ...
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post #15 of 22
Woo-hoo!!! Praise God!!!

I say go for it!!! icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif

This is so awesome! And you also get a discount on stuff! How cool is that?!
"Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid, for the Lord God is my strength and my song; He also has become my salvation."
Isaiah 12:2
Reply
"Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid, for the Lord God is my strength and my song; He also has become my salvation."
Isaiah 12:2
Reply
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