Here we are again. It is almost the end of the year, and the beginning of what could very well be an exciting, successful, enjoyable new year for your personal chef business and your life.

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To help make that happen, APPCA’s executive director Candy Wallace believes it’s wise to sit down and do a review of the past year and make plans for what you want to create in the new year. This way, you are working a plan of your own design rather than being passively at the service of whatever circumstances present themselves over the course of the year.

Here are her recommendations:

Review your current biz plan

Ask yourself: Are you enjoying your business?  If not, can you:

  • Adjust your schedule.
  • Adjust your product or service.
  • Set higher goals.
  • Set more realistic goals.
  • Evaluate if the business model you’re using is right for you.

Finances

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Do you keep and maintain a Profit and Loss report? Do you know the nuts and bolts of your finances? Examine your year-end P&L to look for ways to improve your finances next year.

  • Identify Total Revenue: Is it consistent over the course of the year? Is it enough to meet your goals?
  • Identify Pricing: Are you charging what you need to make a profit?
  • Identify and prepare for Quarterly Tax Payment Liability: Are you putting funds away for each quarter’s tax payment?
  • Identify Total Expenses/Overhead: Can they be trimmed? Can you find less expensive ways to finance them? Will you have new or increased expenses in the coming year in the form of employees, insurance, fuel/transportation, food prices, equipment?
  • Identify Profitability: What is the balance between your revenues and expenses?
  • Identify Special Business Needs: Do you have a budget for unplanned opportunities or needs like promotional banners for an event or classes to elevate your skills?

Re-evaluate income streams

  • Consider a possible price increase:
    • Did you low ball your pricing to get new clients?
    • Do you need to revise your pricing to reflect your value, your expenses, increased costs?
  • Consider offering more and different services: Could your clients use additional services, like catering or cooking classes?
  • Can you take on more clients: How can you bring in more clients this year?
  • Are you interested in new income streams: Many personal chefs do more than offer cook dates for clients. They offer product demonstrations, cooking classes, catering, writing, and other food-related services. Maybe there’s something else you’d like to do under your personal chef umbrella.

WS-5

Administration Review

Are your satisfied with these?

  • Software support
  • Staffing
  • Contract services
  • Public relations/Promotion

How would you rate your marketing efforts?

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  • Are you engaged enough in professional networking?
  • Is your Web presence/SEO/design in need of an update?
  • Are you actively promoting yourself via social media and/or a blog that gives you and your business exposure?
  • Do you have and always carry business cards?
  • Do you need help in learning how to better market your business?

Winery

How would you rate your business skills?

  • Do you feel confident in the various aspects of operating your business?
  • Could you benefit from training in different arenas, such as managing finances, marketing, public speaking, writing, or even cooking?

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Personal Finance review

  • Are you building your savings or depleting it? Can you establish a monthly savings structure? If you can’t save because your revenues and expenses aren’t aligned, go back to re-evaluating your business finances and income streams.
  • Are you engaged in financial/retirement planning? What steps can you take to build your finances now and in the future?

Personal Life Plan

Are you enjoying your life? If not and it’s related to work:

  • Review your work schedule and figure out how to make changes that better suit your lifestyle as it is or want it to be.
  • Make a vacation plan.
  • Schedule family time.
  • Commit to regular recreation/exercise/continuing education opportunities.

Remember, that as APPCA members you have a number of resources to assist you in improving your business. That includes regular weekend Personal Chef Seminars in San Diego. Many members take the seminar as they are launching their business, but we welcome established members, who are interested in revisiting topics and getting input in revving up their personal chef business. Our next seminar is January 16 and 17. For more information, visit our website.

We wish all of you a very happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year!

Happy New Year 2016

Do you do an annual review of your business and life? What other issues do you take into account as you look ahead to the new year?

Not an APPCA member? Now’s the perfect time to join! Go to personalchef.com to learn about all the benefits that come with membership.

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Caron Golden

About 

Founder of premier organization of personal chefs inspires students to follow their dreams of culinary entrepreneurship.

Candy Wallace, executive director of the American Personal & Private Chef Association (APPCA), today was recognized by Sullivan University’s National Center for Hospitality Studies as its 33rd Distinguished Guest Chef.

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