New Year’s Resolutions for Your Catering Business

The presents have been unwrapped and the paper all cleaned up. We’re sure you’ve been busy sharpening that brand new knife set or whipping up some desserts with the newest edition to your kitchen. We hope you all enjoyed your holiday and found some time to relax. As New Year’s Day just passed, we thought we’d talk about setting some New Year’s Resolutions. Now, we’re not talking about joining a gym or dropping certain unfavorable words from your vocabulary. Those are personal resolutions, which we applaud you for making those too, but what we’re talking about are business resolutions. If you remember from our last post, we talked about taking some time over the holiday to reflect on your business. Now we’re going to ask you to put the thoughts that you gathered to work. Below are three possible resolutions you may consider for your business based on your reflections.

New Year’s Business Resolution: Employee Planning

Most of your resolutions may stem from frustrations you felt throughout the year. Some of the most common hurdles revolve around employees and general business practices. If you found yourself frustrated with your new hires – wait staff, prep staff, or event staff – dig further and see where those frustrations stemmed from. Was it turnover? Was it the preparedness of the staff during an event? These two things may go hand in hand. If you had a high turnover rate your staff might not have received as much training because there were consistently new people. They might not have been able to find their groove as a team or as an individual. If you found yourself with a high turnover rate in 2014 you may want to make your New Year’s Business Resolution to set a plan in place for retaining new hires. You can read more about creating an employee retention plan on Entrepreneur.com. Creating this type of plan will help you hire and keep the right people, helping your business run more smoothly.

New Year’s Business Resolution: Update Equipment

Another common stem of frustration for caterers is a lack of updated equipment and technology. This may be a harder frustration to spot, because to you the oven was just replaced five years ago and you bought a new computer seven years ago. The technology available today can make catering abundantly easier, but has also made your equipment purchased ten, five, sometimes even three years ago out of date. If you found yourself frustrated with the amount of time it took to bake 100 quiches for the Vanderwood’s Easter Banquet it may be time to invest in a new oven. If you found that your staff was constantly showing up without necessary equipment or you repeatedly misplaced paper order forms, your New Year’s Business Resolution may be to invest in some new technology, like iPads, and an electronic software, like Total Party Planner, that can help you keep items, lists, and event information electronically.

New Year’s Business Resolution: Grow Our Recognition

Not all resolutions stem from frustrations. 2014 may have been the best year you ever had as a catering company. Maybe it was the first year you felt really confident in your skills and you feel ready to take on more events in 2015. If so, congratulations! We always love a success story. Now, how are you going to gain new customers? The thing to ask yourself is, “Did I successfully feed and entertain clients this year who raved about my food?” If you answered “yes” — great! If you followed “yes” with “but, most people had never heard of my company until that event,” then your New Year’s Business Resolution is to grow your brand recognition. Take a look at what you’re currently doing to promote your business. Do you have a website, even a simple one with a single landing page? Do you have business cards you can handout during events? Do you have any form of social media? Do you have branded materials (shirts for you staff, a logo on your van, or even pens) for the events that you cater? All of these things help build consumers’ familiarity with your brand and in turn grow your brand recognition.

It is said that 2015 is going to be a good year for multiple reasons. According to Bloomberg, the economy is continuing to look up. Make sure that you are making it a successful year for your business. Happy New Year! We look forward to talking with you all in 2015.