Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Jenny Canfield, owner of New Day Coffee + Smoothies, located in Lincoln, NE, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
New Day Coffee & Smoothies. We love our customer base - it includes everyone! We serve 1-year-olds who love our healthy smoothies all the way to customers in their 90s who enjoy eating a scone with their coffee. Athletes stop by for an after-workout refuel and also customers who want to pick their own ingredients because of possible allergies or intolerances.
Tell us about yourself
My husband and I have owned another business for 25 years (Laundromats), in which my role was the accountant. After our four kids grew up and I had spare time, we decided to buy a local smoothie/coffee shop that we had frequented ourselves for years and loved! It's rewarding to serve customers with an atmosphere and product they love. Our relationships with them and the employees make it so enjoyable.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Two new locations and one remodel in 1 year.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Right now, the supply chain. We are very thankful for fellow restaurants and our vendor reps who have bent over backward to help us - they have been so kind.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Invest in your relationships with your employees. They do so much of the daily grind and represent you when they serve customers.
- Be willing to do the hard stuff yourself, especially first. This gives your employees respect for you, helps you really learn the business from the inside out, and saves you money. My husband can fix anything, so that has been a huge plus for us!
- Be willing to give. I'm not talking about fulfilling all of the requests for donations that we all get. I'm talking about watching your customers and noticing who might need an extra pick-me-up that day. It's rewarding to bless them, and really it does come back to you.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
We didn't buy this local gem and expect COVID to hit within a month or didn't plan on expanding so much so quickly. But, we knew we needed God's direction on many things, decided to be flexible, and just keep serving. People noticed the hope and joy and peace in our locations, and things have worked out better than we could have imagined.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org; 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.