Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in business development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Stephanie Markakis-Plouffe, Owner of Fork & Spoon Business Consulting, located in Edmonton, AB, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
My business helps food industry owners(restaurants, bakeries, food trucks) put a food safety plan in place so that when the inspector comes, they don't get any violations.
I also teach owners about food safety to their staff and help implement food safety procedures. I also coach new business owners on how to start, operate and own food businesses.
Tell us about yourself
I started in the food industry over 20 years ago. I started my own business by selling my baked goods at farmer's markets and cafes around Edmonton. I started selling my products at a local grocery store (Save-on-Foods). I ended up being in 18 stores across Alberta!
Since I acquired all this knowledge, I have wanted to help new entrepreneurs. I started volunteering with a company that helps young entrepreneurs with disabilities. I have been helping them for over three years now. After that, the ball started rolling, and I started coaching and becoming a food safety advisor. My most recent accomplishment was I just graduated as a Certified Nutrition Practitioner!
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment is when one of my clients emailed me to say that because of the coaching I provided and all the strategies I helped her implement within her business that in just one year, she made a profit of over $100K.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
My mental health. Seriously! Being a business owner/entrepreneur can be very lonely. Having a support network can make all the difference, though. People who are business owners themselves will understand your struggles and celebrate your wins!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Keep your start-up costs as small as possible. You can use many free useful things until you can make a profit and upgrade.
- Research, research, research! Before jumping in and starting, find out all the information about the type of business you want to open.
- Build a network. Start conversations with people and network with other business owners. Learn from their mistakes and understand their wins.
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.
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