Milestones and Metaphors

If you’ve been following me, you know that I like spending time out west with family members.  My days there start with a morning walk around the neighborhood along unpaved roads, wandering past houses spread out over acres, watching jackrabbits speed off when startled, gazing at the mountains in the background and enjoying gorgeous sunrises.  It’s an invigorating way to start a day that gives me time to think or, on some days, NOT to think! The first time visiting a few years ago, I asked my nephew to help me chart a 4-mile route that wouldn’t leave me

Lessons Learned – 17 years of being a personal chef

This is an end of year blog - but one that has NOTHING to do with the 2020 pandemic specifically. I’m looking much further back than just this year … actually looking back over nearly 17 years of being a personal chef. Over that length of time, I’ve learned a LOT - mostly via trial and error (heavy emphasis on error). Here are my top 13 lessons learned which may help you NOT make the same errors I did. Don’t undervalue yourself/your services. Fire the client when the fit is just wrong! Practice. Practice. And practice some more. Give

ACK! What Should I Charge?? Part 1 – Regular Services

I believe I could write a book on this particular topic. It’s THE most asked question I see from new chefs. What should I charge? How much is a 4 x 2 service? How much do I charge for a dinner party? Well, guess what -  I DON’T have an answer to any of those questions! But I do have some ways for YOU to sort that out. Pricing is personal and based on a multitude of factors The first thing to know is the fees you set today are NOT etched in stone. You can adjust fees if

Going it alone?

Throughout my life as a personal chef (16 years and counting), I’ve met more than a dozen chefs who have gone down the personal chef path association, no personal chef friends, teeny bit of support (but sometimes with a dollop of disdain) from their culinary school, and no idea how to price services or even what to offer.  Many of these people have ultimately created a successful personal chef business but spent a LOT of time spinning wheels and missing opportunities along the way.  Rookie errors are frustrating to say the least The rookie errors stacked up (underpricing, over-thinking,

How to find your first (and maybe second, third…) client

  I took an informal survey of my successful personal chef colleagues asking them how they found their very first client. The answers were more diverse than I anticipated so I thought I’d share here to give you some ideas and some encouragement. Word of Mouth By far the most common source was Word of Mouth (WoM) or some variation of that such as a referral. Here’s a quote to make you smile and hopefully get you to start talking about your new business: “I can’t remember if it was Word of Mouth or me telling everyone that was in

Tailored Taste…Celebrating 15 YEARS as a Personal Chef!

WELL now! July marked the end of my 15th year in business! (Though I've been celebrating all year.) That whole “time flies” when you are running a business is very true! For those who have known me in other careers, you’d be shocked to hear that this is the longest I’ve ever ‘held’ any one job! (Or maybe you wouldn't be!) Since leaving school, I have spent: 3 years teaching elementary school children 5 years typing and doing graphics 7 years with a British firm, ultimately as VP of Administration Many years of freelance event planning, Several years working for a

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