You’re ready to begin your personal chef business. You have all the culinary skills needed, but something is stalling you.
Back in 2012 when I started my personal chef business, I Googled for hours, months on end trying to find these answers. There’s just nothing out there that gives definitive answers.
I had to learn it all myself through trial and error. I made so many mistakes and don’t want to see you making those same business errors. I strive to share everything I've learned over the years.
How much can I make as a personal chef?
Start-up costs run about $500 to $1,000. There are very few businesses with such a...
When I first started my personal chef business, I had no idea what I was doing as I had no mentor to answer my questions. I couldn't find any help online to basic questions, like what should I wear to meal prep sessions in client homes?
I knew that it had to be some sort of uniform, meaning that I would wear the same style at every cook session. I chose a black t-shirt and jeans. Looking back, wearing street clothes was not showcasing my business in a professional way.
Attending a Chamber of Commerce networking event, I saw many of the members wearing polo shirts with a logo. "What a great idea," I thought. It seems so obvious that a professional shirt with company logo would be part of a uniform, but truly when first starting a business, you don't know what you don't know.
I researched and learned that company shirts are rather inexpensive and printed clothing could include an apron as well.
If you're looking for a brand recommendation, I really like the quality of Chef...
I'll often receive emails from aspiring personal chefs asking if I have recommendations of where they can get a loan to begin their personal chef business.
Truthfully, this perplexes me. I'm unsure of what they think the costs are going to be to run a service business like this.
For a break down of costs, check out the start-up costs of a personal chef business >>
You can truly start up your personal chef business for about $500. You don't have to quit your current job. In fact, you shouldn't quit your current job since it's paying the bills.
The personal chef business is not one day you decide you're going to do this then the next day you have a full schedule of clients. It takes time to build relationships and gain new clients into your schedule.
You'll start off with one client at a time while continuing to work your current job. If your current position just doesn't allow any days of the week off, you will...
When entering the personal chef space, you may have a perception of what life will be like.
Let's plot that against what personal chef life really is...
Reality is that you'll spend just as much time going to and from the grocery store and your client's home than actual cooking. You'll also spend a lot of time at your desk planning before the actual execution of an event or meal prep. There's also bookkeeping and marketing tasks that are always needing your attention.
If you're not organized and have a good judgment of time, your business could get chaotic quickly.
Truth is that whatever time you've estimated for cleanup...double that and that's how long it takes. Oh yes and what about when you arrive in a client's kitchen and they left chaotically that morning so the remnants of dinner last night and breakfast this morning are all...
A taco walks into a bar and the bartender says, “we don’t serve tacos here.” And the taco says, “that’s okay, I’m just here for a margarita.”
That was the premise behind the book that I wrote, “A Taco Walks into a Bar.” This is my cookbook. This is a taco walking into a bar. You get it?
I’m going to show you how to make your own cookbook. You can do this in just nine steps. It’s not going to cost you a dime. You can seriously make a book, a cookbook, for yourself for free and publish it and have your friends purchase it on Amazon, Kindle or paperback. This is completely printed on Amazon. An author copy costs me about $2.45. I’m charging about $20 for this one and I get about $10 royalty.
So, let me tell you about the nine steps. Step 1 of course is to pick your subject. You know, what are you writing the cookbook about? Is it about chicken? Is it about Chinese food? Is it about keto diets? Pick your style and...
Fear and self-doubt are unquestionably the two most common roadblocks to success in life including what holds many back from starting their personal chef business.
When coming face to face with fear and self-doubt, you could choose to either:
Everyone experiences fear and self-doubt to a different degree:
In other words, if people don't feel connection from you, they're not likely going to invest in you and your services.
90% of communication is non-verbal, so people are connecting with all of you, not just your voice, tone and pitch but your whole presence. Your energy.
If you're refusing to do video like many struggling personal chefs, you're basically trying to start a business while hiding from people. Without video, you won't have that real connection.
The people you follow and look up to have truly shown who they are. They have connected with you on an intimate level through the power of video.
It's time to overcome your fear of rejection and get on video.
Do you find yourself constantly researching, gathering information on the personal chef business?
Is gathering information becoming a hobby instead of what you know you should be doing...implementing the information?
There is a turning point in starting absolutely any business when it's time to shift from information to implementation, but how do you know when it's time?
There are a myriad of different kinds of personalities when jumping into a new business venture.
How do I price my services?
Many personal chefs don't launch their business because they are looking for a scientific formula to answer this question. The truth is that pricing personal service is more psychology than science.
WHY do you think charging by the hour is the way to go?
It's likely you've been an employee of a business your entire life. You may not know any other way! You're currently being paid $20 an hour so your goal when opening your personal chef business may be $25 an hour.
Truthfully, that's exactly what I had thought when starting my own personal chef business. Charging by the job didn't even occur me. This is because I had always been employee and didn't know any better.
I was stuck in employee mindset versus business owner mindset.
Employee mindset is working as hard...
You hear it all the time, "You need to niche" to bring customers to your business...but what does that really mean?
The dictionary calls a niche, "distinct segment of the market" and yes, that summarizes it, but just somewhat. The last blog post discussed how to get clients into your business and how important target marketing is to your marketing efforts.
As a personal chef, you can't cook all things for all people. If you were having marriage problems, would you call up a marriage counselor or someone who generally counsels all people with all problems? The answer is obvious and so should you niche.
Target marketing and niching are two different concepts actually.
For example, you and a competing personal chef may both target athletes as your marketing segment, but each of you may offer them different...