I am 16 years old. I have worked in my uncle's coffeeshop and really want to own one of my own. It would be organic and fair trade. I would add herbs to each coffee drink I make for different things, like colds and such. The only problem is that I am only 16. I want to get more experience with making coffee and dealing with the problems that come up in a coffeeshop. I was thinking about working for Starbucks for a couple years for the experience, but I keep getting warning signs about it...like this site, lol. What do you think about just working there for a little while. I will be teaching figure skating on the side for extra money. I'm actually not worried about benefits or what they pay me. I would be in it for the experience. I was also thinking about working at another cafe that might be better.
Work then own a coffeeshop?(8 posts) (4 voices)
From what I have seen and heard, you will probably learn as much about running a coffee shop at Starbucks then you will teaching figure skating! It would be like working at McDonalds to learn about opening your own restaurant. If your uncle has a coffee shop, keep working with him, and pick his brain. Or find another small independent coffee shop to work at for a while, Starbucks will teach you about working for a corporate giant, but not a lot about coffee.
First of all, adding herbs to coffee? I would take some classes in nutrition and alternative medicine. Usually herbal remedies clash with coffee, most alternative medicine practitioners frown on coffee. Tea might be a better line of work if that is what you are interested in. You will definitely never cure a cold with coffee!
As far as starbucks providing you with experience, it sounds like you are more interested in an independent coffee shop and starbucks definitely runs much much differently. Working in your uncle's coffee shop is better experience. Plus the way that starbucks makes coffee and espresso drinks is really terrible, you will mostly learn a lot of bad habits. I would also take some business and management classes, find out how to write a business plan. It is not nearly as profitable to own a coffee shop as it might seem. It is very hard work and very expensive - for example, a decent commercial espresso machine can cost you around $50,000. Go to college first, get as much experience as possible, and be willing to take on as much responsibility as possible. Good luck, kid!
wtf? what type of coffee machine you want to get? the coffee machines they use in bucks cost around Â£5000 and its the same ones they use around the world, thats around $10,000 US.
will reply propelry when i finish watching something on tv, its funny
I thought $50k was a little steep for a coffee machine. Even $10k for crank out that crap starbucks passes off as coffee seems high, well, at least for thier brand of coffee it does anyway.
auto machines are kinda expensive.
anyway, back to what i was saying. the more experience you get, the better. starbucks is abit generic, and too coporate... BUT, it can help with learning how to manage things and how not to manage things. i had previous plans to open up my own cafe, might do in the future, wont tell you too much; i got a strong business and econmics background so i do understand a lot of what happens, but that is not needed. common sense is the first thing you need. you did the best thing first of all, having experience... trying before you commit to doing it. then you did the second thing.... finding out more information. find as much info you can, from everywhere... and you wanting to open your own place... your taking the risks and making the decisions. so at the end of the day your making the shots, if it fails due to internal problems, thats your fault, and if its external, what can you do? etc.
might sound silly, but first step before you do anything is the marketing mix. and move on from there. setting up shop is the hardest part, once its going it should be easy to maintain.
ok, maybe I exaggerated on the cost of an expresso machine, but it is really pricey and not what you want to skimp on. I have quite a lot of experience with this, trying to work every day with a machine that is too small, or constantly breaking down winds up costing you a lot more than spending the cash on a really good machine.
Actually keeping a cafe running and profitable is a very delicate balancing act. It takes years to build up a clientele to make you profitable and as an independent you are always under threat from the green giant. You have to keep a close eye on your food costs. Assembling a team of employees and being able to pay them enough to keep them is more difficult than it seems; you have to be firm but fair, and know that most of your best people are going to leave you sooner or later. I have seen long time regular customers leave in droves when their favorite barista graduates from school or gets a better offer and moves on. That kind of thing can break a small coffee shop. And having been in the position where I hired the staff, I can tell you that it is very hard to find good people.
That said, I love this work, it is just working for starbucks that has soured me on it. I've been doing it for a long time. I just think that it is a mistake to think that once you set up shop, it will magically run itself. It definitely takes a lot of hard work and dedication every single day and you will never get rich this way! You have to do it out of love.
do it out of love? lol that saying always makes me laugh. hiring staff is a nightmare, esp when it comes to coffees, its not like stacking shelves, experience does make a huge difference. and believe wageslave, bad drinks once too many times, custoemrs leave!
anyways, hows the plans coming along then?
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