Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Stephan Popescu, Director of Sales & Marketing of Chefdrop, located in Toronto, ON, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Chefdrop provides guests with access to top chefs & restaurants, thanks to our curated selection of exceptional meal kits. We partner with local chefs & restaurants to create an experience that brings the restaurant experience to your doorstep.
Perfect for weeknight dinners, hosting, celebrating a special occasion, or even sending someone the perfect gift, ordering with Chefdrop means you never have to compromise on food quality again.
When you order with Chefdrop, not only are you getting an elevated dining experience, you're also supporting local restaurants across the city. It's becoming harder and harder for some people to get to their favourite restaurants, but with Chefdrop, you can support these local chefs & restaurants from far away.
Tell us about yourself
I have been part of the Chefdrop team since June (Chefdrop launched in February 2021). The reason I was drawn to this role and continue to be motivated each day is that as the Director of Sales & Marketing, I have the opportunity to impact meaningful change every single day.
I truly believe that Chefdrop provides such a unique & amazing experience. I love the challenge of being in a position (as a startup) where it's our job to convince the public to give us a shot.
As the 1st hire on the marketing team, I have also spent my first year at Chefdrop building out our marketing team/department. As someone who is in a leadership position, I believe that it is very important to invest in your team on a daily basis. I get motivated every day when I see the people on my team growing, developing, and pushing the envelope as to what they (and Chefdrop) can do.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I would say that my biggest accomplishment this past year has been bringing together a team of exceptional individuals to help build the marketing foundation for Chefdrop, which will help us continue to grow as we move into 2022.
No matter how great of a business idea you might have, without great people behind it (and who believe in it), you will never reach your company's full potential. I have always prided myself on putting my teams in the best position to succeed, and I truly believe that it is because of them that Chefdrop will continue to grow and become a household name.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
The hardest challenge in working for such a young company is prioritizing what should be done on any given day, week, etc. There are so many things to do, but not enough hours in the day to get everything done.
This is where it's important to make sure you have a strong strategy that can help guide you and prioritize different initiatives along the way. It's sometimes easy to get lost in the day-to-day grind without realizing that you're harming your long-term ambitions by prioritizing the wrong things in the short term.
Being in a leadership position, it's also imperative that you do whatever you have to do to make sure you have a pulse on your team in order to make sure that they're feeling motivated and not burnt out from all the demands of helping launch a startup.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Put the customer at the core of every decision you make. No matter what your product or service is, your goal should be to provide your customers with the best possible experience. Putting them at the core of your decision-making process will ensure that you're always looking out for their best interests.
- Nobody can do it on their own. As you look to launch and grow a business, it's more important than ever to have a strong team that you can lean on. Don't look to hire quickly or find someone who gives you the best "deal." Focus on finding exceptional talent that you trust to excel in the positions they're put in. And don't forget that your work doesn't stop when you've filled a seat. Leadership is integral to the success of any start-up, and you need to make sure you're spending time developing your team, putting them in positions to succeed, and giving them the tools to grow their skill sets.
- Don't be afraid to fail. Everyone says it, but not everyone follows through. As you start to grow, make sure you're listening to your customers, diving deep into whatever data you can get ahold of, and testing new tactics, initiatives, etc. Nobody is perfect, and we all make mistakes, but it's how you learn and bounce back from those setbacks that will determine whether your business succeeds or not.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email email@example.com; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
Feel inspired to start, run or grow your own subscription business? Check out subkit.com and learn how you can turn "one day" into day one.