Micro Entrepreneurship: 7 Lessons from Home Chefs (3 Mins Read)
Are you looking for starting your own micro entrepreneurship venture, and for some inspiring ideas? Just look around in your residential society to find blooming home chefs! While you can draw inspiration and learn important lessons from home chefs, they offer insights into secrets of setting up a successful mini business that will earn you recognition and profits.
My residential society boasts of a number of home chefs who specialize in various cuisines and sell them at modest prices. These home chef recipes are nutritious, hygienic and easily available next door in my society. I have often wondered where do these home chefs, all of them women, draw their inspiration from. As it turns out, today happened to be one of those days when I placed order for a “Pessarattu dosa” batter and happened to strike a conversation with Radha aunty, the chef. Through the usual repartee, I realised there is something unique that drives these women, all them home makers. And it is perchance the hunger for recognition of their culinary skills, a skill which is often taken for granted in our society, and sometimes even devalued especially for the housewives. But it is such a vital skill, the ability to cook and feed good food and therefore nourish the minds and bodies of your family merits eternal gratitude.
In my interactions with some of them, it turned out they are pretty much “one-woman-army” who single handedly managed the entire value chain — starting from procurement of raw materials to cooking to order management to delivery and billing, and all this while doing an awesome job of branding their product, customising their home chef menu and running a household alongside! That’s quite some lesson in what I call as micro-entrepreneurship, which is a model of running a small venture from confines of your home. You would imagine that it could be overwhelming to cater to a society of 900 flats, but well truth be told, they serve every client with a warm smile! Check out few lessons from home chef and my Insights as to what can we can learn from these chefs .
Here are my 7 lessons from home chefs which will help you start your own micro entrepreneurship venture:
1. Explore Your Skills and Passion
If you have a skill and passion, you can earn recognition and possibly some money out of it — The only thing that matters for these chefs is the mastery of gastronomy
2. Focus on Quality
Quality of your product is the only way to sustain your business — They sell food that is fresh, hygienic and prepared with a positive intent and not commercial interest
3. Understand Your Customer
Know your customers and what matters most to them — Society members certainly value delicious homemade food with added convenience of proximity at reasonable pricing
4. Differentiate your Product/Service
All home chefs have their own unique culinary delights from different regions or seasons, so in essence it nulls out competition amongst them
5. Personalise Your Offerings:
Personalising your service is the key to winning your customers’ heart — Every parcel is delivered with a warm greeting or a personalized handwritten note
6. Get Referrals through word of mouth and seek continuous feedback
Word of mouth is the best advertisement — The chefs invite feedback/testimonials on society WhatsApp groups from their customers to encourage others to try their food
7. Start Small and think big
Finally, it is always possible to start small — These chefs operate kitchens from their apartments, offer simple menus, use standard vessels, function with regular domestic help and no VC funding!
I still marvel at the ability of these home chefs to churn out interesting and Nutritious food, with their own USP, and complete ownership of sourcing, cooking, billing and delivery. Their attempt at micro entrepreneurship is worth applause. And how can I forget, the added flavors of love they pour into the food they cook and serve with a smile. Money is the last of their motivators. I sense it’s something akin to a mother’s love — selfless and priceless. Like they say, a chef’s biggest reward is the expression of delight on your customer’s face after a hearty meal!
For more thought provoking posts read People’s Kafe — Stories of Human Emotions, Endeavors & Inclusion which is an humble attempt to present the author’s bank of experiences with people collected over years from workplace, society and home.