E-Myth Applied to the Catering Business

I’ll never forget the day, many years ago, a good friend recommended I read The E-Myth Revisited by Michael Gerber. It was that day Total Party Planner would never be the same company again.

Just as my friend did for me, I implore any business owner (especially catering business owners!) to read Michael Gerber’s book. I read it in just a couple of nights. I literally kept nudging my wife every 5 minutes saying “Wow! Listen to this…” and then continued to read paragraphs, verbatim, from the book. Everything Michael Gerber talked about seemed to apply to our company.

What does E-Myth talk about? Well, everyone will probably agree that most small businesses start out from a passion for doing “something”. In catering, business owners start their companies out of a love for cooking and entertaining. New catering business owners work very hard, day in and day out, to execute booked events. Michael Gerber refers to this role in the company as Technician – the doer. In many cases, small business owners never leave this role. This is also the role where we risk “burning out”. Eventually the thing people loved doing the most becomes something they enjoy the least. Are you still cooking, ordering, staffing, lifting, loading, cleaning, and working very long hard days?

The next evolution that some company owners will successfully achieve is Manager – the organizer. An important role to bring order and solidify the base of the company. A good Manager will put repeatable systems in place so that all the Technicians can do their jobs successfully. The Manager guides the Technicians. Does your catering company have a standard recipe book with documented preparation methods? Procedures for executing events? Policies of what is expected both at an event or at the facility prepping for an event? Staffing guidelines?

Beyond Manager, ultimately business owners should strive to be an Entrepreneur – the dreamer. This is the role that transforms small companies. When you entertain ideas, and imaginations of new areas of interest, outside the scope of the current business, you can set endless boundaries of what the business can achieve. As strictly a Technician or Manager it is impossible to see the bigger picture – or allow yourself time to act on it. Can you expand your off-premise business by purchasing a banquet hall? Can you buy a second, third, or fourth banquet hall? Open a cafe division? Is there an opportunity to franchise?

In a very simple summary, E-Myth ultimately promotes you working ON your business not just IN your business. With that being said, such an amazing book could never be summarized in one sentence. The full read is well worth your time. I guarantee you will be super-charged straight through to the final page!

For more information on The E-Myth Revisited by Michael Gerber, please visit www.e-myth.com .

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