Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Joseph Yacino, chef and owner of YaDa Chef, located in Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
We are a personal chef and onsite catering company. We offer and perform our services both in the United States (mainly Florida) and throughout the UK and Europe. We work both on land, cater to private jets, and on private superyachts. Our clients range from working families that are too busy to cook, don't like to cook, and or have dietary/allergy restrictions and also those of UHNW, who fly us in for a specific event. We keep top athletes in shape through custom diet plans. We also give cooking classes both in-home and as corporate team-building workshops.
Tell us about yourself
I have been cooking for as long as I remember. My first job was as a dishwasher in a family friend's restaurant. The chef took me under his wing and brought me behind the line. Training in England, France, Greece, Italy, Norway, Scotland, and the United States. He has helped me capture the classic and regional styling of many countries. I am the author of Stay Fit Eat Allergy Free, a cookbook with over 200 gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, nut-free, low sodium, and calorie-controlled recipes. Knowing I can help people get healthier and maintain goals while giving them tasty and satisfying foods keeps me returning to the kitchen or galley.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
We have been awarded Top 10 Personal Chef in South Florida for the past six years. The recognition would not be possible without our clients' recommendations. 95% of our business comes from referrals. We do no traditional advertising.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Everyone thinks they want to "be their own boss." The truth is when you are the owner; every client is your boss. The hours in this business are long and seven days a week. Teaching and maintaining consistency with multiple employees is often a challenge.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- The best advice I could give would be to sit down and write down why you want to open a specific business.
- The next would be to do your market research, write a business plan. If you think you'll need $5,000 to start up, count on 7-10,000. Things always seem to cost more than planned.
- Now, believe you can do it. Go out and start taking the necessary steps to make this dream a reality. Nothing will be handed to you. Network, network, network.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
If you are prepared to work harder than you have probably worked in your whole life, you will be able to do this. You may not turn much or any profit for one or more years. Keep with it, don't give up.
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.
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