What skills do you need to start a street food business?
Are you thinking about starting a street food business? Well, you need to make sure that you have the right skills for the job. If you are starting the business with a partner, you don’t need to have all the necessary skills by yourself since you will be sharing the duties. Of course, you will gain most of the skills on the way so don’t feel discouraged if you don’t qualify for most of them at the moment. Here are the best skills you should have if you are planning to start a street food business.
1. Exceptional cooking skills
Once you open a street food business, you will spend most of the hours cooking and preparing food. If you’re not doing this, it’s definitely a bad start for your business. You should be able to produce high-quality food consistently and fast. At first, if you don’t have enough money to hire more staff for your business, you will be forced to handle most of the cooking yourself.
Do you have previous experience as a chef? Did you previously work in the catering industry? Well, you will be well suited in the street food business. If you don’t have any of these skills and are still interested in a street food venture, you can start a mobile catering business. Here, you can prepare food for people upon request without the rush to do it fast.
2. Business skills
Preparing amazing food is the first skill in any street food venture but it’s just the tip of the iceberg. You need other business skills such as the following.
a) Marketing – If you want your street food business to be successful, you need to create a recognizable and memorable brand. Take a look at Proper Popcorn for a great example. You need to take advantage of social media to advertise your brand. You should be able to make your customers aware of your location every day so they can find you effortlessly.
b) Design – You will attract a lot of customers if you have amazing flyers, business cards, logo and your food truck. That’s why you need to have design skills. If you know someone who can charge less for designing these things, you can contact them immediately. Of course, if you have a relative who can do it for free, you should contact them. Since you are starting out, you need to find ways to save money rather than breaking the bank trying to higher the best designer in the market.
c) Finances – Since a street food business is just like any other business, you need to know how to budget and track your expenses to guarantee a good profit. You practice your negotiation skills to ensure you get the best discounts on stock and rent.
d) Management skills – With your business expanding, you need to hire the best staff and train them accordingly. Find ways to keep them motivated to work for you. Even better, you should offer incentives so they can work at the best levels effortlessly.
e) Customer service – Remember, you are selling a lifestyle to your customers, besides the food. If you are charging the highest prices, you should make sure your customers have the best experience.
The list of skills you need to learn might appear overwhelming but you can learn most of them along the way. As a first time street food vendor, it’s hardly likely that you will know all these skills from the first day. It’s a trial run that allows you to sharpen your skills as you progress.
You can make things easier by partnering with someone with skills you might not have. For instance, you might be a great chef but lack the skills of running a business. If that’s so, you should partner with someone who can handle the business side of things. Of course, if that’s not a good option for you, the next thing to do is research.
Take advantage of the internet, your network of people and books and learn everything there is to do about running a street food business. It’s the best way to ensure success. You should be humble and seek advice whenever possible to ensure smooth running of your business.