How To Start A Small Restaurant
If you love food and love the idea of being your own boss, then you should consider learning how to start a small restaurant. Smaller eateries are nice because they have all of the charm and grace of larger restaurants without all of the corporate nonsense or worries of operating within a large space. Fulfill your dreams of working within the food services industry by learning how to start a small restaurant.
- Know what cuisine you'll serve. The first thing you need to consider when trying to start a small restaurant is what kind of food you're going to make. This will decide what kind of staff you'll be looking for, what kind of equipment you'll need, and what kind of ingredients you're going to be buying. The best way to do this is to research the other small restaurants in your area and see what's missing. When you find a discrepancy amongst the competition, be the first to fill that gap.
- Find a location. Optimally, you'll want to rent a space that's already built to be a small restaurant. This will already have a kitchen space, dining area, and possibly even old equipment you can buy at the lowest possible price. If this is not the case, then you want to find a venue that's easy to see and sure to bring in a lot of street traffic—a crucial step of advertising in your first few months of opening.
- Get certified. Consult your state's legislators and find out what you need to do to legally serve food within your area. Each state and county have different laws when it comes to professionally distributing food, so be sure to brush up on them. The last thing you want to happen is your entire operation to be shut down due to a bureaucratic misunderstanding.
- Find a wholesaler. Talk to other restaurant or pub owners in your area and see what companies they use when buying their ingredients. You can both find the best selection for your specific cuisine, and you might be able to get a special discount by mentioning that you know and work alongside other business owners in the city.
- Find your workforce. This is one of the most crucial steps when trying to start a small restaurant. Put out ads in the local newspapers and Internet classifieds, or place some signs around your venue. If you're in city, you'll be sure to find plenty of people who are willing to learn new skills and recipes to ensure a steady paycheck. Furthermore, advertising to college students is a great way to get a capable workforce—these kids are always in need of a little extra cash, and can most likely fill up the spots you'll need during the evenings and weekends.
- Advertise. After you've organized everything else and you want to open, you need to start getting the word out. Placing ads in your local newspapers and television channels are great ways to get people to start coming, as is having promotional discounts on selected menu items. Just be sure to advertise aggressively and you'll be surprised how many people show up for opening night, and every single evening afterwards.
Learning how to start a small restaurant may seem difficult at first, but the rewards are definitely worth all of the initial hardships. By keeping yourself organized and constantly abreast of everything that's going on around you, you'll find that trying to start a small restaurant isn't as problematic as you've been led to believe. When you make the commitment to start a small restaurant, you're making the commitment to provide those around you with fantastic food and an even better environment to enjoy it in.