27/01/2015

Free Download: Cafe / Restaurant Owner Interview Template

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If you've been searching the web looking for a Cafe Owner Interview Template, then search no more!

I've used this template as the basis for interviewing many cafe owners over the years about their cafes that are for sale. Further details are included in my book "The Complete Guide to Buying a Cafe"

Download Cafe Owner Interview Template

Cheers,

Craig Reid - The Cafe Ninja

13/01/2015

Free Download: Cafe / Restaurant Staff Handbook Template

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If you've been trolling the web looking for a Cafe or Restaurant Staff Handbook Template, then troll no more!

I've used this template as as the basis for creating staff handbooks for many cafes over the years. I hope you find it useful.

Download Staff Handbook Template

Cheers,

Craig Reid - The Cafe Ninja

30/12/2014

Free Download: Cafe / Restaurant Sales Tracking Template

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Whether you have bought a copy of my book, The Complete Guide to Buying a Cafe or not, this Sales Tracking template will help you keep track of your daily and weekly sales!

Download Sales Tracking Template

I hope you find it useful.

Regards,

Craig Reid - The Cafe Ninja

18/07/2014

Free Download: Buying a Cafe Checklist

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Whether you have bought a copy of my book, The Complete Guide to Buying a Cafe or not, this checklist will help you to tick all the boxes of cafe success.

Download Buying a Cafe Checklist Template

I hope you find it useful.

Regards,

Craig Reid - The Cafe Ninja

 

01/07/2014

Free Download - Cafe / Restaurant Profit / Loss Assessment Template

Whether you have bought a copy of my book, The Complete Guide to Buying a Cafe or not, this checklist will help you to analyse a cafe's financial situation, prior to purchase:

Download Cafe / Restaurant Financial Analysis Template

I hope you find it useful.

Regards,

Craig Reid - The Cafe Ninja

18/06/2014

Free Download - Cafe / Restaurant Business Plan Template

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If you've been trolling the web looking for a Cafe or Restaurant Business Plan Template, then troll no more!

I've used this template as the basis for creating business plans for many cafes over the years. I hope you find it useful.

Download Business Plan Template - Existing cafe.

Cheers,

Craig Reid - The Cafe Ninja

11/06/2014

Free Cafe / Restaurant Profits Workshop with Restaurant Marketing Expert, Howard Tinker

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I know it's a challenging time in the industry right now so I thought I would give you a TIP about something that could really accelerate your profits!  
 
I recently came across a guy called Howard Tinker, who is helping hundreds of restaurant and cafe owners to increase their profits through smart marketing.  He doesn't use daily deals or any kind of tactics that cost owners, just very clever strategies that work - and make big profits.  
 
I told him about my book and he kindly said I could invite people who had bought it to attend one of his workshops for free. There really isn't anything in this for me I just wanted to offer you more support if you needed it.  
 
If you are interested, there's a website about Howard's next workshop here: 
 
http://restaurantprofitology.com its in Sydney in a couple of weeks.  
 
Howard also has a book you might want to check out too:
 
 
Good luck, I look forward to hearing about your successes.
 
Kind regards,
 
Craig.

06/01/2014

Buying a Cafe - Cafe Owner Interview Tips & Tricks (Grill Them!)

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The following is an excerpt from my book, The Complete Guide to Buying a Cafe...

When you have decided that you are interested in the café you should make an appointment to meet the owner(s). This is usually arranged by the business broker. The business broker may or may not attend. It is better to meet the owner of the café on their own if possible as they are likely to be more honest. Business brokers tend to put “spin” on the owner’s words and shield them from difficult questions. However, always direct your questions at the owner and watch their body language if the business broker answers for them. Once the broker has arranged a suitable time for you to meet, you will start to get organised for the meeting.

The Grilling

The purpose of the meeting with the owner is not just to ask questions about the café – it is to find the truth about the café. Consider your role to be like a lawyer cross-examining a witness on the stand.

Tips:

  • Ask as many questions as you like. If your questions are reasonable, you should expect answers
  • Not answering questions is a sure sign of the owners hiding something
  • If there are two owners, try to arrange two separate meetings with them and ask the same questions to see if their responses differ!
  • Take a second person along as the note taker. This allows you to maintain eye contact with the owner and to watch what is happening around the café. The second person may hear things differently to you.
  • Ask the broker why the owner is selling and ask the owner separately.
If you are making an “official” visit to see the café and to ask the owner questions, make this "formal” by carrying a note pad and reading your questions. At the end, thank the owner and put your notes away. The owner may then feel that the “interview” is over. Once their guard is dropped, they may tell you other useful information.
Want to read more? Buy my book today!

Cheers,

TCN

02/12/2013

Cafe Financials - The Importance of Fixed and Variable Costs

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The following is an excerpt from my book, The Complete Guide to Buying a Cafe...

Fixed & Variable Costs

Fixed costs are costs to the business that tend to remain the same or “fixed” over a period of time. For example, the most common fixed cost is rent. Rent will be agreed at a set rate, usually on a yearly basis with a percentage increase per year.

Other fixed costs are likely to include:

  • Council rates
  • Strata rates
  • Rental costs for equipment, etc.

Fixed costs are important to consider as they are independent of turnover,i.e. no matter how much – or how little – the business is taking in, you still have to pay them.

All other costs are known as variable costs, and they will tend to vary in direct relation to turnover. This makes sense when you consider that if you get busier you will need to buy more food to meet demand and more staff to serve more customers. The opposite is also true – less
custom and you will need less food and less staff.

If you are managing the business properly, your café’s variable costs will drop if the turnover starts to drop – however the fixed costs will remain and these will start to represent a bigger percentage of your overall costs. This is where a business can get into trouble. So the bottom line is that fixed costs need to be looked at carefully to ensure they will not represent too much of a burden if times get tough. 

On the contrary, as turnover increases, profitability can increase by a proportionately larger amount, as the following example shows:

Turnover

$6,000

$7,000

$8,000

Variable Costs
  (50%)

$3,000

$3,500

$4,000

Fixed Costs

$2,500

$2,500

$2,500

Weekly Profit

$500

$1,000

$1,500

If you bought the café with a turnover of $6,000 and profits of $500 (8%) and you can increase the turnover to $7,000, the profit margin increases to $1,000 (14%). At a turnover of $8,000 the profit margin increases to $1,500 (19%).

The profit margin has more than doubled even though turnover has only increased by one third. The limit on your growth is simply the capacity of the café. If you can outgrow the capacity, it is time to find a bigger, better café or, perhaps, to open a second one.

Want to read more? Buy my book today!

Cheers,

TCN

01/11/2013

Before You Buy a Cafe - Why You Need an Accountant and a Solicitor

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The following is an excerpt from my book, The Complete Guide to Buying a Cafe...

The two people you need to make contact with before buying a cafe are an accountant and a solicitor. If you really want to dot all the “i’s” and cross all the “t’s” you might want to consider having a hospitality consultant fully assess the café. You wouldn’t buy a house without a survey so don’t buy a café without a thorough analysis.

Referral can often be a good way to find an accountant or solicitor but make sure you ask the referrer what makes the person a good choice. The referrer may have very different opinions on what they look for and may also have very different business interests which lead to very different needs.

It is important to get these people in place and ready to go as the buying process can often be surprisingly competitive. For example, you may find a café that you want to buy but there is a lot of interest in it. If you have your solicitor and accountant ready to go you have the opportunity to get ahead of those that are not as organised as you are. It can make the difference between getting the café of your dreams or missing out.

The Accountant

Why you need to find a good accountant:
  • They can assist with your business plan
  • They will help you to set up an appropriate company structure (which helps to get the most out of the tax system)
  • They will help you to set up your accounting systems
  • They  will advise  you  on the financial aspects of  the  business purchase
  • They will ensure that you submit all your required tax documentation on time.
But getting a good accountant can be tricky. There are lots out there and they aren’t cheap! So what should you expect from an accountant?
  • They will provide an initial consultation free of charge
  • They will come to you – you’re busy running your business so make sure that they are willing to come to you (you are the client!)
  • They will provide templates (e.g. Excel spread-sheets) or provide assistance on setting up your financial systems
  • They will provide a fixed price for your annual tax return
  • They include general enquiries (throughout the year) as “part of the deal”
  • They have a set hourly rate for other work i.e. work that isn’t “general enquiries”.
The Solicitor
Why you need a good solicitor…
  • To explain the buying process – including deposits, trial periods, etc.
  • To understand the fine print in contracts e.g. the lease
  • To warn you of any legal pitfalls
  • To complete the deal!
What makes a good solicitor?
  • They aren’t too busy to see you when you really need them
  • They understand the legalities of cafés and small business
  • They understand the legal requirements of councils
  • They have experience with leases and property.
Once you have your support network in place, you are ready to really hit the road and begin your search.
Want to read more? Buy my book today!

Cheers,

TCN

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Craig Reid is one of Australia's top business improvement consultants and is a former owner of one of Sydney's top breakfast cafes.

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