The Bakery School Will Go Ahead!

The weather is getting warmer now and I love it. Living 50 meters from the sea, I’m lucky to have the opportunity to visit the beach whenever we have a hot day. I managed to man up to go for a swim in it last week, eek, it was a bit cold. We just did 3 strokes and out. At least we can tick that box.

I hope it warms up, it would be great to go in more often. Fate has it that whenever it’s hot, I will be working the weekend, and I regularly hit August, looking like a sheet! But not this year, not a fact, just a feeling. 

Pizza And Some Necessary Distractions

Once I’m able to return to baking as my full-time career, I’ll be able to bake and sunbath when I want. Well, that’s the dream anyway, I may be too busy.

I did manage to take some work with me down there the other day, I think an office with a direct sea view is probably worth a lot to rent!

But this one is free, and includes a suntan!

So anyway, I’m talking about baking less and less on this blog.

That’s because I’ve not done as much. I’m waiting for the oven. And still not sure, how long I will be waiting. It could be a week or two, it could be longer.

I did employ the salt pan oven today.

I made 4 pizzas, and also a Tuscan flatbread as a starter. The pizzas took about 3 or 4 hours to bake, they take about 45 minutes each.

I don’t think I would do this in a real, oven life. But it’s a way to make the best of a challenging situation.

The flat breads are salt less, making them was a last minute thing.

I fancied something to dip into hummus, and they were just the perfect thing. I rushed them through, this time ignoring rest times and cutting back prove times.

I was too hungry to wait. They weren't quite as good as they could be, but still came out lovely and the fresh hummus was a great combination.  

The hummus isn't completely traditional, I do my own thing and it tastes great to me.

Whilst this is going on, I’m still playing the waiting game, see the previous post. It’s hard, just waiting to see what someone else decides about your future, but I’m keeping busy.

I should find out on Monday, whether the loan gets accepted, or not.

What Do You Do When Your Business Loan Gets Rejected?

After finding out a few days ago, my business loan was rejected I've been deep in thought about the next step. What does the future hold? Can I find a way of getting it launched another way? Or just give up?

I realised, there's pretty much two ways this can go:

Work out another way of starting up the bakery school,

or...

Go back to climbing the corporate ladder

After spending the last 5 years aiming to have a successful business, I’m not choosing the second option.

Across the past 5 years, there has been a bit of off and on in terms of motivation. After my first business collapsed and a small fortune was lost, I lost all motivation. I wanted to push myself in my career as a retail manager.

Area manager, director and then CEO etc, that was the plan.Then I realised in order to get their, you have to find the right company to develop in, the right culture to be accepted and to be given the opportunity to excel.

After 2 jobs and a failed prospect, I realised that the best way to get to the top would be to create a company that did this.

One that I could mould in my own image.

So basically, I was going to have to make this business work, somehow. In all this time, I have had many business ideas, but none that perfectly match my ambition like the bakery school.

It’s exciting to see how it develops, and how I can too. 

This baby’s got to roll man! So let’s find a way…

My personal circumstances mean borrowing a lot of money is not going to happen, regardless, as I transition from employment to going into the business full time with the level of debt I currently have, I have to earn a significant amount a month.

That’s because of the amount of debt repayments I have to make. Around 650 pounds a month comes out of my account without me seeing anything from it.

So quitting the job and working from scratch to build it up is not an option. I need to clear this debt.

You can't put your life on hold for debt though

There’s also another challenge. Well, it’s kind of a good thing as I was thinking week about my lesson plan. I want to give amazing value and, to do this the school needs to help develop the skills of people.

Repetition is one of the best forms of learning and the course plan in the current state teaches everything, but just once.

By repeating the skills and making slight alterations in recipes the course can really improve and offer more value to the purchaser, justifying the £150 price point.

The drawback of this new course layout is the course now needs 50 plus videos. This is going to take a few weeks, months, possibly a year to complete.

So it’s pretty good I have got to repay a large loan before I spend it! I can’t pay for marketing when I have finished the course, or at least nearly finished!

So really, for now all I need is an oven. I can create the lessons, continue building my blog posts and developing the recipes. And do things organically.

So the key challenge now is, how to afford to buy the oven, and start clearing the debt?

Trying to find out what problem you need to solve is usually the cause of stress, now I’ve done this, my stress levels have calmed now.

I’m less emotional and have entered “problem solving mode”.

Long may this continue!

How To Plan Financially For A New Business

Here's a guide on how to get yourself in the right financial place to start a new business. Using my own situation of starting an online bakery school as an example.

First of all, you need to know where you are with money. By that I mean, what do you have, what do you owe and how long could you live off your savings whilst your enterprise takes off.

OK, that last point is a bit middle class, for me anyway, it’s more of a case of how big is the overdraft on my account. And this is not the best way to get started.

How I'm going to get started

There’s going to be a point, a transition you could call it where I will go from receiving regular income, to needing to take a wage from the bakery school.

Unfortunately, with the amount of payments I need to make each month, I need to pay myself a wage!

There is going to be a month or two in my plan where I need to do a lot of work, full time, and then some. This is also just before the point where it brings in an income.

So there’s a problem, I need some amount of savings, or at the very minimum I need to reduce my debts in order to survive on a smaller income.

For at least a month or two.

So basically, what I’m saying is I need to reduce my debt.

So I can either spend less, or earn more. I’ve been on this battle for a few years now. I cannot lower my fixed outgoings any more. My flat is tiny, everything is as low as possible, I’ve shopped around for my utilities every year, and continue to haggle on top.

I can reduce my monthly spending on non essentials though. Going out for dinner, buying nice wine, splashing out on clothes and taking holidays need to stop.

I’ve always been budget conscious, at the very least I get value for money.

But now, that’s not good enough, if I want a successful bakery college, I must rein it in.

What else can I do to be debt free?

But that’s not all, by just spending less, to get to a decent point where I’m financially ready to take the risk (or gain finance) is going to take roughly 3 years of living a boring life.

Plus I’m a very strong in motivation, but to have don’t spend money as a key motivation, I’m not going to be able to cope, not for 3 years.

So I need to earn more. It’s obvious.

Just not sure how just yet.

How To Earn More Money To Repay My Debt

I’ve been thinking for a few weeks now that I’m going to need to earn more each month. This is to pay my debts, and to try and build a nest egg to start Busby’s bakery college.

I started with Googling how to earn more money. It is one of the most common searches in the world too! So after reading all the usual bits, in other blog posts that

I could go back to my original plan of starting a marketing business?

This was where the dream of setting an online bakery school came from! Originally I was just looking for a case study in order to appeal to other potential customers for that business. I’d tried to get other clients, but just couldn’t find the right match.

So I decided to market my own business. At least there would be no disagreements, plus it would be a great case study if it goes well.

It just turned out that once I started thinking about starting a bakery school, it become much more fascinating than anything else. 

After all, baking is a unique skill, one that I’m delighted to share.

So the bakery school took over and the previous marketing dream, ditched.

But could I generate leads, sell websites to local shops or maybe set up an eCommerce stores selling watches or whatever?

Hmmn, maybe I could do something like this. It’s also worth considering other options such as selling some pastries in the local shops or markets.

Small stuff that can bake in my friends oven without a problem.

This idea sounds fun, and keeps me to my roots. I also looked at getting another job, bar work or whatever, but the rates of pay are relatively demotivating compared to my salary.

So I can not decide, I appreciate time is ticking, decisions must be made. But I’m not ready yet. I’m in a good headspace now, I’ll made the right decision.

It’s now important to do the right thing for Jayden, and India. So there’s pressure, but also support.

Let’s hope I can be more decisive very soon!

Written by Gareth

"I'm looking to share my passion in artisan baking with others"

picture of gareth busby

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