What Being a Chef Taught Me About Home Based Business Success

When I think back to all the knowledge I've acquired about home based business success, I never knew that one of the most unexpected periods of my life could mean so much to me in what I do now. When you read stories of how home based business success leaders came from, most of them come from administration, business, or tech backgrounds. For me, I came from left field being from the culinary world, a universe of art, creativity, flair, and job freedom. However, what you watch on Food Network is not always the peaches and butterflies and sunny days like they make it seem to be.

The cooking world is definitely not a physically forgiving lifestyle. To make a long story short and get to the meat of the article, I chose cooking because I didn't know what I wanted in my final year of college. Cooking just seemed natural to me, and going to culinary school blossomed my passion for it. I worked throughout California for 6 years before a back injury derailed my career. I took time off to evaluate my life and realized that cooking was not a sustainable physical lifestyle for me. I traded a knife and pan for a computer and a MBA and I developed a strong passion for internet marketing and helping others succeed in business.

These are the keys to what I've discovered that cooking has inherently honed in my skill set for home based business success:

1) Organization -

Yea, I'm sure you are rolling your eyes because you think that this is just another boring list of qualities that you've read a million times. But let me assure you of one thing: no one organizes better than a well-organized chef! Think about how we operate in a zoo-like environment of pans, food, and people flying around, harping short terse phrases to one another in a code unknown to most spectators in a live kitchen environment during "rush" service.

I spent most of my service nights thinking on my feet, organizing order tickets, communicating with cooks and servers, while finishing plates and making sure everything went out in tip-top condition to the customer. If you don't think that a chef is organized in order to do all that at once, you are from another planet.

What I've adapted to my home based business success trainings for my new business partners is the idea of developing organized habits. In a kitchen, I used to write prep lists of tasks that needed to be completed before dinner service. Whenever I changed a menu, I would write out all the components needed so that I could generate order lists so my cooks can place orders.

In my home based business success trainings, I work with new partners to make daily action plans, and write out detailed long-term action plans. We talk and write down the sacrifices that need to be made, as well as the tasks that will need to be completed within a certain time frame to ensure success. I'm instilling in them a sense that whatever they do, they need to organize their actions so that they don't even have to think; just react to their lists. Overthinking opens up the opportunity to self-doubt and self-criticism which slows down progress.

2) Time Management -

Taskmasters are time managers, and home based business success is grounded in excellent time management skills. I used to look at the clock at the beginning, the middle, and the end of my current task to make sure I'm on time and getting things done in a timely fashion. Why? Because if I'm too slow on one activity, it slows down every other activity, so I have to be ready to make adjustments if necessary.

I teach new people to create weekly schedules where everything is written down in terms of obligations. Once we figure out free time via the schedule, we come up with blocks of time to work the business. Each block has tasks and they are timed. It keeps the new people on their feet, and keeps them moving from one task to the next. Having no time management becomes a time-suck of useless activity because we get stuck so easily on tasks when they don't go our way.

3) Efficiency and Speed -

Chefs don't waste time; we get things done in the quickest and most effective way possible. Why? Because we don't have the time to mess around. If an order comes in, we only have a certain amount of time to get the food served, otherwise the customer gets impatient and we damage our customer service experience for them. When we prepare the food, we do little things to make our tasks save time. Doing little things like moving a garbage can closer, or pushing bowls together, save time. Even if things like that sound menial to you, understand that cooking is an art of repetition, so over repetitions of 100, 300, or 500 repetitions, little time saves add up to an extra 5-10 minutes.

In terms of home based business success, it's an art of repetition as well. And doing little things like making modifications to a word or two in our scripts, or fix a fidgeting body action that we didn't notice before, can determine the difference between success and failure when prospecting.

4) Delegation of Tasks -

One of the most important lessons I learned as a chef was the truth that I need to learn how to relinquish control. When I worked banquets, I had to rely on my line cooks to produce the consistent high quality results for the dining room guests because I was busy with serving my banquet guests. I had to learn how to delegate tasks out to people so that I could free myself up to focus on the more important tasks. I also had to learn how to delegate responsibilities because I couldn't do it all alone.

One of the biggest problems that I see impeding home based business success is that people refuse to let go of control. They don't trust their downlines, and they feel that they need to be everywhere at once, with their hand in every pot (sorry for the cooking pun).

People inherently want duplication, and to be able to step away from our business to enjoy our time freedom that we earned without having to worry about the business suffering. But when they sign up a new business partner, they grab them by the throat and try to force all the information down, and they shadow them everywhere. You have to let your people fall down, in order that they can learn how to will themselves to get up. It's not about getting up; it's about building up the willpower to overcome fear of failure.

I'm not saying that you should totally abandon them, but teach a little, and let them work it out. Then they come back and report their results and you teach them how to control and adjust and then let them work it out again. It's a process, and the best home based business success is found when that process is carried through over and over again until they can do it without you. That's the true duplication result you are seeking out.

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