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A Comprehensive Guide On How To Become A Great Caterer

That’s the main reason why the catering managers often take the lead to help customers plan and execute special events and several other one-day programs in hotels as well as other venues. Like most careers, catering takes a combination of hard work, training and carefully honed skills so as to succeed. While there’s much in common with the idea of being a chef, caterers usually face many other challenges. Caterers also have to handle business matters such as accounting, customer relations and marketing, in addition to the food quality. Although perseverance and talent can help any person to become a successful business owner, there are still other techniques that you can use to become a successful caterer.

Great Caterer

Below are the tips for any person who wants to begin a catering business:
Gain catering jobs experience:

Any person who thinks that they want to be caterers should work for caterers first. A good option might include working as a server for established caterers because they’re always looking for good individuals to work in events.

Find a licensed commercial kitchen for renting:

If you’re ready to set up your catering business, you can’t provide the catering services from a home kitchen. You should find a licensed catering kitchen within your area, and then inquire about renting a commercial kitchen space.

Set your catering prices:

Catering is a business like others. As such, you must have the profit and loss statements for anything that you will be doing. Make sure that you tally up the hours that you put in doing the events because the best way that you can use to know if you’re making money is by approaching it hour by hour for all jobs.

Rent catering equipment:

You don’t necessarily have to purchase everything that’s required right away. The good part about having a catering business is the fact that everything that you need might be rented. However, make sure that you invoice your customer for all rentals that are required for the event.

Obtain business insurance:

Just like any other business, you should ensure that you have insurance. The significance of this can’t be underestimated because it is sometimes that’s easy to overlook. You should have a commercial liability insurance and proper business license to cover vendors, guests, client or anyone who’s potentially affected by the services that you offer in a negative way.

Become an approved caterer:

Most venues usually maintain a list of the approved caterers that can operate in their facilities. This is therefore a great way to start and also maintain your business.

Great Caterer

Promote yourself as the catering expert:
Social networking tools like Facebook and Twitter are excellent ways to start promoting your catering business and establish a group of “followers” and “friends.” However, do not use this as a tool for talking about the business itself. Instead, you should use those sites to give advice and also establish yourself as the expert.

Stay focused on the catering business:

You should be innovative, but also remember that you’re a business. The idea of catering is one of the most important parts of your business. However, you should also remember that you’re in business and you have to keep track of paperwork and the books.

Online directories such as Culinary Training have a variety of courses which are specifically tailored for individuals entering this competitive field. You should therefore get a way to stand out among the rest.

Let’s now take a look at what will make you a good caterer:

Cooking

At the most basic level, the art of catering is all about food. Regardless of how beautifully the catering venue has been decorated or how the place settings are arranged, customers will not return if the food was awful. You should also have enough cooking experience so as to make recipe substitutions, plan the menus, and carefully prepare, reheat and transport huge amounts of food.

Food safety

A good caterer (and his/her staff) should always be aware of and also comply with up-to-date food safety laws in their state. This includes being aware of the regulations by Food and Drug Administration and FoodSafety.gov. There’s also further training in this particular field being offered many local colleges and culinary institutes.

Customer Service

Caterers work with customers to design menus. Being courteous, diplomatic and tactful is necessary, as you might need to persuade a prospective client to substitute a given ingredient or even change a dish. Good communication skills are also important to build up a client repertoire and catering in a successful event. A satisfied client is the best recommendation for this and word-of-mouth remains to be one of the most effective ways of advertising out there.

Flexibility and Creativity

Recipes might need to be adjusted so as to cope with any food allergies, and cooking techniques might have to be altered so as to conform to personal preferences or religious dietary requirements. An adaptable and imaginative person will to triumph in such situations, and in still confidence in his customers in the process.

Great Caterer

Leadership

A caterer should manage a staff of servers, cleaners, dishwashers and cooks, while ensuring that their team is well-aware of their place settings, schedules, food safety regulations and serving customs. It might also be necessary to offer direction as well as advice to the customers.

Motivation

Caterers must be proactive and enthusiastic to promote themselves and at the same time bring in business. During the busiest times, a caterer might work for long hours throughout the week which demands stamina. It is also important for the caterers to motivate their employees (and remain motivated themselves) during moments when the business is slow.

Financial planning

Remember, fluctuating work is part of your job. The busy periods, such as holidays and weekends, must be balanced with times of year when the business is just trickling in. Being in a position to financially plan and weather all the slowdowns is very important to any caterer.

Business Management

Besides cooking, catering services have to be profitable as well. The administrative jobs in catering deal with accounting, taxes, pricing services, ordering food, managing employees, and organizing budgets and schedules.

Marketing

Your food might be delicious, but your phone will not ring unless people know more about you. Getting your catering business noticed is very important and in catering business, a great network of contacts is important. You will have to liaise with event planners, venue organizers, florists and several other services that it will take to pull off a large event. In addition, this also serves as your network of referrals.

Attention to detail

A caterer might also be in charge of décor, food presentation and table arrangements. Setting up, clearing and running the dining room all fall under the tasks of caterers. Here's where you will be able to impress your customer and all their guests - who are still potential clients themselves.

Taking adequate time to study the catering field and learn about its particular demands and challenges can make the difference between success and failure. If you like cooking, interacting with other people, and you still have a flair for bashes, then a career as a caterer might be a great choice for you.
 
 

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