Nowadays, a lot of people are thinking about owning a small business, such as a restaurant, fast food service or a café. We are ready to risk our hard earned money, get a bank loan or even borrow money from good friends. However, before we embark upon this adventure most know very little about, we must pay attention to a few crucial issues.
- Business plan and choosing the type of business
- Permits and other “paperwork”
- Interior and exterior design
Business plan and choosing the type of business
Business plan doesn’t need to include numerous details such as a large company’s would, but it is certainly necessary. In the business plan, you choose the type of business you wish to set up, define its goals and target market (students, business people, etc.), as well as work principles and operating procedures.
The most natural way to decide on the details is to imagine yourself as a customer and the type of service you would need and want to receive. If the service includes excellent coffee you know how to make, that’s something you can choose to offer. If you like a great sandwich and know how to put the ingredients together, from bread to condiments, serving and packaging – then fast food is just right for you.
The goal is to select a business you have a feeling for and avoid things you personally would not like (bad coffee, poor tasting sandwich, pizza that doesn’t look or more importantly taste good, etc.).
If you have selected the type of business you would like to set up, the next step is finding the right location.
Location is very important, if not the most important step in the entire process. For example, if you wish to provide a daily food service, you want the location to be in the vicinity of business buildings and daily rush. Availability of parking spaces also needs to be taken into account.
To provide parking spaces is one problem less, since customers nowadays do not want to walk very far to a desired place.
After you selected the type of business, defined the business plan and found the location, you go on to acquiring work permits and lots of other paperwork.
Permits and other “paperwork”
First thing to do, before entering the chosen location, is to check the building’s status. Regardless of what the owner of the space tells you, you need to go to the competent institution, check the status of the given location and look it up in the city plan. It is possible that the permits and status are in order for the moment, but that a plan exists for the building to be teared-down in half a year due to changes in city planning.
There have been many bitter experiences with buildings scheduled to be demolished, those waiting for a new permit, those in the middle of a certain privatization phase one discovers only when it is too late.
The next thing to check is the status of utility bills (storm water charges, copyrights), not to forget additional fees that the owner of the space did not originally mention but that must be paid, such as fees for prominent advertisements, outdoor tables (usually paid by the square meter, in some cases by the number of tables), and other fees.
Interior and exterior design
After collecting all the necessary information on the legal status of the space, you can begin thinking about its design, in other words how to make it your dream place. It needs to be a part of you, making your clients feel welcome, with excellent service and a pleasant stay.
Design does not have to be pompous and overly expensive for the guest to feel good. It needs character only you can introduce by viewing the space as a customer, not as an owner. A successful owner does not leave room for uptight space, music or service. Customers like places with heart and soul, where they feel like they are a part of a large family, with you at its head. After all, hospitality industry was built on those very bases.
How to open restaurant – Final advice
If you had a difficult time understanding most of the above text, the best thing for you to do would be to get a job in a restaurant, fast food or a café, learn the basics of how they function and “breathe.” After that, you will have your own experience to fall upon and fresh ideas as to what your dream place could be like.