Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Amy Greeley, Owner of Bull's Horn Food and Drink, located in Minneapolis, MN, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I bought space that had been a neighborhood bar since the 1930's but had become a bit run down. Without changing too much of the look, I added a full kitchen and ADA bathroom and generally got it up to code.

Tell us about yourself

I'm a people person. I really enjoy the community that comes into the bar and the community that is the staff who work together to make the place amazing. My husband has been cooking forever, and this is our joint project to invest in our neighborhood and make a place where we would enjoy spending time. It's important not to overcomplicate the food or service. It's literally a space that sees families with small children having our kid's TV trays, hipsters sipping fernet, neighbors trying our house-made American cheese or dill-pickled fried chicken, and folks putting stickers on our bathroom mirror.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

I'm very happy that we have been able to offer many benefits to our staff that are not always found in restaurants. We have sick time as well as offer health benefits. We also provide holiday bonuses as that can be a tough time for many people. Not to mention we tend to close a lot around the holidays, so hourly workers lose money.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

It's hard to be an expert in all things. As a small business owner, you become your own tech support, building maintenance personnel, equipment troubleshooter, HR specialist, conflict resolution professional, and so much more! Figuring out the places where I need help and setting up the support structures to be able to access them when needed has been key to staying sane.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

My top three tips would be to first find a good lawyer, banker, and bookkeeper. These cost money, so build them into your startup costs. They will all save you money in the long term. My lawyer helped us develop a solid business structure, and this is even more essential with partners or investors. They will make sure you don't get cheated or have the way out that you need. My banker was able to access more funds for me when our construction went over and when I needed more equipment a few years later. And the bookkeeper has taught me so much about how to know where my money is going, how to see when there are procedure failures or possible theft through costs, and pay all my taxes on time to avoid fees!

Second, build a strong team with redundancies, so you are not the only one who knows how to do key things. Staying sane is hard when you are doing everything. Maybe you need to build the processes and train, but then step aside and let others run with it. Sometimes they even bring more to the role than you could!

Lastly, be comfortable setting your own standards. We are a welcoming, friendly, and fun place to eat and drink, but the customer is not always right here. There will be some people who don't like that, but many more who do and who appreciate the environment or product that it creates. One business does not have to be all things to each person, so figure out what you do well and do it well in a way that makes you happy!

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.