So, you are thinking of starting a bagel business? You are in for a treat — and so are your customers. Bagels are well-loved by the young and old alike. Whether you eat bagels for the convenience factor or because of the childhood nostalgia, bagels are a great industry to be a part of.
If you want a piece of the action and you are looking to be a part of a bagel franchise, you have come to the right place. Keep reading for our top five business tips for starting a bagel business, especially if you are considering franchises for sale here in Maryland. Starting a bagel shop certainly isn’t easy, but if you are prepared for the challenge, we can assure you: the challenge is worth it.
To get into these tips, we will look at the words of some of the most successful people out there, and how they apply to starting a bagel business. Your biggest challenge in starting a bagel shop is preparing your mind for the task before you. Before you ever touch a piece of bagel making equipment or put money down on a storefront, you have to do some work before the work. Curious? Read on.
Tip #1: Determine your “Why.”
“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” — Walt Disney, Co-Founder, Walt Disney Productions
Leave it to Mr. Disney to get us started off on the right foot. Perhaps you have been thinking of starting a bagel business for a while now, but something has been holding you back. What is it? What is keeping you from quitting talking and beginning to make progress on your dreams? Our first tip: Determine your “why.” Why is it a bagel shop important to you? What is holding you back from starting? When you understand what your priorities are, you will be more equipped to say “yes” and get going on your goals.
Tip #2: Know Yourself.
“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.” — Albert Schweitzer, Nobel Peace Prize Winner
Especially in the beginning, getting any kind of business off the ground is going to be difficult. Franchise or otherwise, any new endeavor will be frustrating, and you will face a lot of failure and setbacks. This is where our second tip comes in: Know yourself. When you love what you’re doing, you’ll love doing it, even when it is hard. So you might need to do some self-assessment: what part of the bagel business do you love? Do you enjoy handling the paperwork and finances, or would you rather experiment with the bagel-making equipment? If you can get together with your team, learn from each other, and utilize strengths, you will ultimately be more successful because you are working out of your gifts.
Tip #3: Beware Mission Drift.
“Building a mission and building a business go hand in hand.” Mark Zuckerberg, Founder, Facebook
It happens to the best of us — you have a goal, you know your why, but then all of a sudden, you wake up one morning and realize you got lost somewhere along the way. You wanted to have great bagels and even better customer service, but somewhere in the midst of trying to grow in quantity and maintain quality…. You’ve done neither. That’s okay! You can get back on track. Remember that “why” you established? The reasons you are running a bagel shop in the first place? Write them down and put them somewhere you can see them every day. Then, as you are making decisions about growing or changing your business, run them through a quick little test: do they fit your goals? Will they help you reach your mission and vision, or will they cause you to drift away from them? This may cause you to make some difficult decisions, but it will be worth it.
Tip #4: Trust the Process.
“If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.”
— Steve Jobs, Co-Founder, Apple
Steve has got it right on this one. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and your bagel shop won’t be, either. When you are tempted to be discouraged, remember that any kind of business, franchise or otherwise, is going to be hard. Don’t let that truth discourage you! Instead, remember to trust the process. Just like it takes time to learn how to make a bagel and how to run a business, it takes time to know your people and your customers.
Tip #5: Keep the main thing the main thing.
“The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today.”
— Franklin D. Roosevelt, POTUS
We won’t try to convince you otherwise: starting a bagel business is tough. There’s a learning curve when it comes to being in the food industry, there’s a marketing and advertising curve that comes when trying to stay competitive, and all sorts of questions that will come your way when you least expect it. But, keep these words from FDR in mind: the only thing in the way of your dreams is yourself. You have the power and the ability to overcome greater challenges than you think, so don’t let doubts get in your way. Instead, look for opportunities to make progress little by little, day by day. It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it. Want an incredible bagel shop that serves your town and creates a hub of community and delicious cream cheese? Plant those seeds today and tomorrow will take care of itself.