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Cafe in Limerick | Different is Good

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The management meeting of one

It’s the hardest meeting there is to have (Feb 9, 2014)

Just you staring back at yourself in the mirror There’s no one else to blame, there’s no one else to point the finger at. It’s you, and you alone is the problem, and must find the solution. You in the sentence, being me ! Every month or two the management meeting of one must be held to evaluate what the mistakes were, and successes. The hard questions must be asked. Am I good enough ? Was it a mistake opening this place ? Is the concept right ? Should I quit ? I ask myself these questions all the time. Not so much when we are busy, but the quiet times, the less busy weeks.

I’d like to think there were only successes, but boy have I made mistakes too. As Einstein said “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new” Here are the mistakes we have made so far.

Mistake 1. Opening evenings

From the start I wanted to serve canteen’s simple healthy food for both lunch and dinner, I still do. Our location and Limerick itself made me rethink this strategy. Limerick city does not have a vibrant, young population filling the streets past six o’clock. Most are in the burbs. Some nights our only company on Mallow Street were the local prostitutes and kerb crawlers.

Mistake 2. Not opening early enough

Our hours were half nine to nine. I thought there was a very small pre work coffee/breakfast trade in the city. But people asked and near well demanded that they get their Bagder and Dodo fix before work. We open now from eight.

Mistake 3. Working every day

When you open first, you want to make every wrap, serve every customer and clean every table, wrong. Time off is nearly more important that working time. Time away is the “ideas factory”. It’s where you solve problems and come up with the next big idea.

The day-off is the most important work day of the week

Mistake 4. Outsourcing

Not hiring an accountant sooner. Hire one and become friends, you need to trust them. Then let them worry about the paper work. You must still know your Gross Profit % and Margins, but do you really need to spend five long nights a month inputting every last receipt and invoice into a spreadsheet. Time off is precious and accountants are not that expensive.

Mistake 5

Mistake 6

Mistake 7

Mistake 8

These are the unmade mistakes, but we are only starting our journey. Must fail more, but fail better