This is just a baking hobby!
Recently, a cookie decorator emailed me and wanted to know when is the best time to turn a baking hobby into a full-time gig?
If strangers are now buying your products, you’ve done the work. She’s selling cookies. It’s assumed that she has priced for profit. The money earned is paying the bills. Family and friends are not her primary means of support.
The question now is can you afford to hire help? Once you move from hobby to part-time or full-time your mindset shifts. Can you afford to transition into working this cookie business? All too often, we don’t want to address the money issue. It’s especially relevant because you can’t run your business without money. In addition, you can’t survive without it either. Get real about what it cost to start and stay in business.
Have that difficult conversation.
All too often the issue is a lack of willingness to sacrifice everything for the business. This is where the rubber meets the road and you must give up everything. You are giving up the luxuries and working at a micro level. It’s time to get down and dirty, learn to live off less so you can commit more time and energy to the biz. The goal is to grow and that takes work.
Sacrifice the Baking Hobby
Therefore, to make the leap from hobby to a real business, you may need to the following:
- Reduce your expenses
- Lower your rent
- Spend every waking moment making your product
- Engage with your customers
- Build your mailing list
- Brand your business
- Become a social media master
Until you can afford to make the jump to full-time production, you’ll have to sacrifice.
Don’t give excuses about not being able to do this or that. If you want the business bad enough, you will make it work. Otherwise, continue with your hobby.
I know this is not what you want to hear, but Rome was not built in a day. Rarely do entrepreneurs understand the work and effort involved in starting a business. If you are a food entrepreneur understand all the responsibility falls on you. What does that mean? All the mistakes, bad decisions, unhappy customers, unprofitable products and poor pricing decisions. Everything that goes wrong is your fault. Everything that goes right is your fault too.
This is why you “Learn before you leap.” Find a mentor, ask questions and acknowledge that errors and mess-ups will occur. Ride-out the tough times. Let the “mess” roll off like water off a duck’s back. If you didn’t know this little tidbit of insight, here it is. Starting a business is the hardest thing you will ever do, baring raising a child. Hang in there. learn to love the chaos.
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