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Offline chgorrell

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #20 on: December 11, 2021, 01:27:35 PM »
I've been going at it solo since October.... how the building is laid out i would say is another big factor, how you set up ordering/reservations/time-slots, etc etc. and the "educational" part of the process to the customers about how your operation works is another big part i've found. It can be a daily pain in the ass for sure, and irregardless of all the planning, %$# happens..Last week my ice machine wasn't draining properly so i had to take it apart and clean it. The number of pizzas i was able to do was almost cut in half..
Making the pizzas is totally the easiest part of the day, even service is chill for me, it's the constant ready set go, 6/7 days a week..and just every guest talking about what i need to be doing, or hiring employees or blah blah blah, that gets old.
I don't do this to chase pennies, theres a long-term plan so i can justify the "Leaving Money on the Table" which i hear all day everyday, i also haven't paid myself since i struct the first nail building it. As long as the rent is paid, wife and kid have what they need, i don't need or want anything else.
You have to be very determined and have a belief in self to do it solo.


Offline Little bean

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #21 on: December 11, 2021, 01:52:44 PM »
I operate in the Bitterroot Valley of Montana. Come to the Western Montana Fair, or Ravalli county Fair and bring a pencil and paper. The Ravalli county fair is 4 days and we sold 1329 pies. Our best day was 397. We do 14 hour days. If your willing to chip in even better. The Western Montana Fair was more laid back, 5 days, 1476 pies best day was 374. The reality is we could actually do more but the oven gets to the point it needs a break to heat up. So we slow up for it..  We have 3 pies in it at any one time. Sounds insane but it is real.

I am not capable of that type of volume by myself. God bless you though, if I had the capability to do that it would only take me 5 years to retire.

Offline theppgcowboy

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2021, 03:09:17 PM »
I only operate during the summer at that pace. Its my side hussle. Now I kinda agree with the concept of the original poster, I do know that one is too few but if he has a decent girlfriend willing to jump in for support he can make it work. He needs to do a minimum of 50 though. Good luck to him threading that needle.

Offline stickyD

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #23 on: December 30, 2021, 01:40:00 PM »
As a chef/owner of two restaurants I will say much of my profit comes from my background in plumbing, carpentry, auto repair, electrical repair, creating websites and taking photographs. I hardly have time to cook a damn thing between fixing all the broken sh*t. But that's where I save a lot of money, and can be back online faster than waiting for a handyman. I wish I knew how to repair fridges, that skill would buy me a new truck!

Offline scott r

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #24 on: December 30, 2021, 01:49:55 PM »
SO TRUE!!!!!    I feel like a bit of a broken record always trying to convince prospective restaurant owners exactly how much it costs above food/labor to keep these ships sailing.   Its quite frankly shocking!  Thats why we have to charge what we charge.

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Offline theppgcowboy

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #25 on: December 30, 2021, 01:57:04 PM »
Ditto stickyD, when my ice machine goes down it is  a $400 bill for the hvac company to send 2 techs on a 90 mile round trip to tell me it ain't working, then they fix it and bill me for the parts and labor.

Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #26 on: December 30, 2021, 02:58:22 PM »
I hired a manager that was a former ac tech back in the day. Saved a lot of money on repair but essentially made it a zero profit non pizza food business. I got out asap.

Offline waltertore

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #27 on: December 30, 2021, 06:21:35 PM »
The more stuff you have in life the more headaches you have.  This includes physical things and in business employees.......   At this point in our life Judy and I are dancing the fence with doing just enough to keep our lifestyle and bank some $.   I could never run a big operation or multiple ones.  Those headaches get more toxic as one ages.  Do it big while you are young :-D
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TO CREATE HOPE AND MEANING IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
http://www.smilingwithhopepizza.com/

Offline foreplease

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #28 on: December 30, 2021, 07:06:05 PM »
The more stuff you have in life the more headaches you have.  This includes physical things and in business employees.......   At this point in our life Judy and I are dancing the fence with doing just enough to keep our lifestyle and bank some $.   I could never run a big operation or multiple ones.  Those headaches get more toxic as one ages.  Do it big while you are young :-D
I used to say Im looking for a business with no employees and no customers, then maybe franchise it.  ;D


For 22 years I had a minimum of 2 acres, often 10-15, to myself at all times. Prior to that I had 2 businesses with a handful of employees - very good ones, results and retention were not problems I had. Its still stressful. There is way more to it than signing the checks, as you know.
-Tony

Offline waltertore

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #29 on: December 30, 2021, 07:15:31 PM »
I used to say Im looking for a business with no employees and no customers, then maybe franchise it.  ;D


For 22 years I had a minimum of 2 acres, often 10-15, to myself at all times. Prior to that I had 2 businesses with a handful of employees - very good ones, results and retention were not problems I had. Its still stressful. There is way more to it than signing the checks, as you know.

I hear you.  I wish Judy and I could do it all on our own but we wouldn't make any $.  Our goals are to sell the shop for a decent price, get a small travel trailer to escape the fires while they burn in the West as well as escape the human race when need be :)  and to make 22 gauge cold rolled steel sicilian pans to keep an income.  We live pretty simple and not $ oriented so will have to do something in retirement.  We are close to production.  Getting metal and the price of it has been a factor in getting this thing going.  The metal shop is going to sell them to us ready to ship.  Judy and I can handle that out of our garage.  The stress will be low compared to making pizza.  Keeping up a great consistent pie and service is very stressful in a deceiving way.  On one level it seems low stress and then it hits you how hard it is to stay top rated.  Selling pans sounds like a breeze.

https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2021-Sundowner-Trailers-Trail-Blazer-TB1869-5017552193
« Last Edit: December 30, 2021, 07:18:34 PM by waltertore »
SMILING WITH HOPE PIZZA MISSION STATEMENT
TO CREATE HOPE AND MEANING IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
http://www.smilingwithhopepizza.com/

A D V E R T I S E M E N T


Offline Pizzaman106

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #30 on: January 02, 2022, 03:21:01 AM »
I hear you.  I wish Judy and I could do it all on our own but we wouldn't make any $.  Our goals are to sell the shop for a decent price, get a small travel trailer to escape the fires while they burn in the West as well as escape the human race when need be :)  and to make 22 gauge cold rolled steel sicilian pans to keep an income.  We live pretty simple and not $ oriented so will have to do something in retirement.  We are close to production.  Getting metal and the price of it has been a factor in getting this thing going.  The metal shop is going to sell them to us ready to ship.  Judy and I can handle that out of our garage.  The stress will be low compared to making pizza.  Keeping up a great consistent pie and service is very stressful in a deceiving way.  On one level it seems low stress and then it hits you how hard it is to stay top rated.  Selling pans sounds like a breeze.

https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2021-Sundowner-Trailers-Trail-Blazer-TB1869-5017552193

Hi, Walter

     How many dough balls a day do you make? It seems like you sell out of pizza everyday and am wondering how customers take the news that you are out. It is very impressive that you make every pizza at your shop.

Offline waltertore

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #31 on: January 02, 2022, 12:39:37 PM »
Hi, Walter

     How many dough balls a day do you make? It seems like you sell out of pizza everyday and am wondering how customers take the news that you are out. It is very impressive that you make every pizza at your shop.

When the pandemic first hit we doubled our dough production (dine in got canceled and curbside went ballistic) and were running out every day before we opened via phone ordering.  We start taking phone orders at 3pm for pickup after 5.  It was too intense doing so much, prep, dough making and pizzas.  Our cooler was packed to the point you couldn't hardly get in or out of it and I had a person helping me with preps and dough making.   We were making a lot of $ but the stress and physical demand was tearing Judy and my senior citizens bodies up.  It was like every night was now Friday night on steroids (busiest night of the week for us normally). 

We decided to close the shop last January for 3 months until my wife, myself, and all staff were fully vaccinated as too many people were getting Covid including our friends Norma and Tom Lehman (RIP).   The amount of dough I make a day has decreased since then. We also cut down to 4 days a week, 3 hours a night from 5 days.   I do all the prep as I don't want another person in the shop helping me - have to be wearing a mask 10 hours a day.  Working the ovens with a mask is terrible and to wear one all day would make me insane. 

Some people complain about us not having endless dough but not many.  Once in a while we get one who starts telling me I need to hire more people, train people to make the pizza, be open all hours all days, etc........  I tell them to -OYOP - and when they look at me crazy I say - open your own pizzeria.  99% of the customers are regulars or travelers that know our policy so there is no problem and in fact almost all support how we operate. 

Now that dine in is back, we have slowed down and could not sell as many pies as we did when the pandemic first hit.  We will never do dine in again until this pandemic is whipped down to a common cold scenario.  We recently bought N95 masks to hopefully keep the new variant safely at bay.  They are harder to breathe with than the cloth or blue surgical type masks.   Our flow is more erratic now that dine is the norm again here but by the end of the week all dough is gone.  We are grateful to be successful during this pandemic and not have contracted the virus.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2022, 01:17:10 PM by waltertore »
SMILING WITH HOPE PIZZA MISSION STATEMENT
TO CREATE HOPE AND MEANING IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
http://www.smilingwithhopepizza.com/

Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #32 on: January 02, 2022, 02:22:15 PM »
Only the IRS or sales tax bureau asks how many dough balls do you make.

Offline waltertore

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #33 on: January 02, 2022, 02:38:20 PM »
Only the IRS or sales tax bureau asks how many dough balls do you make.

 :-D

Fortunately, we are not in trouble with either.  I take no offfense anymore to these type questions. The norm today is "share the craft" give it all away.  I am too old for this new way.  I was raised old school family only on business and recipes.  Plus those big names sharing the craft are making lots of money from product manufactures for doing so.  Small operations like ours get none of this and our secrets are what make us unique and my roots are deep at keeping a closed mouth as my mentors would have killed me if I shared the craft :) 
SMILING WITH HOPE PIZZA MISSION STATEMENT
TO CREATE HOPE AND MEANING IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
http://www.smilingwithhopepizza.com/

Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #34 on: January 02, 2022, 02:43:02 PM »
You probably grew up hearing the phrase "Does Macy tell Gimbel?" I remember hearing all the time in my New York upbringing.

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Offline waltertore

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #35 on: January 02, 2022, 03:56:14 PM »
You probably grew up hearing the phrase "Does Macy tell Gimbel?" I remember hearing all the time in my New York upbringing.

Yes I remember that one and I remember working for Alfredo who had just arrived from Italy and opened a small pizzeria a few blocks from house.
He was a wealth of old school info and ways.  He never paid me for my work which was ok as I loved hanging out with him.   He told me once in broken English, looking me straight in the eye 4 inches from my face  "You a tell anybodys my a secrets and I a break a your neck".  It was only said that once and other than that we laughed together a lot.   He only lasted a year or so and went back to Italy saying- Americans are in too much of a hurry with everything..... 

I worked for several old schooler guys like this and I loved that they loved their work so much and to learn it you had to bust you butt with them for a long time to learn what was going on.  I enjoy sharing parts of our business and encouraging people to seek out people in the flesh to learn from. Like Alfredo said - Americans are in too much of hurry with everything.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2022, 04:34:48 PM by waltertore »
SMILING WITH HOPE PIZZA MISSION STATEMENT
TO CREATE HOPE AND MEANING IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
http://www.smilingwithhopepizza.com/

Offline parallei

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #36 on: January 02, 2022, 04:40:06 PM »
:-D

.....The norm today is "share the craft" give it all away.  I am too old for this new way.  I was raised old school family only on business and recipes.  Plus those big names sharing the craft are making lots of money from product manufactures for doing so.  Small operations like ours get none of this and our secrets are what make us unique and my roots are deep at keeping a closed mouth as my mentors would have killed me if I shared the craft :)

What bull%$#. You are old, but younger than me! I had the misfortune of spending a few years after High School in the US Army Field Artillery. The creed was something like, "teach what you know to those below you and learn what those above you know." After undergraduate and graduate degrees in engineering, and a 40 year career, I'd say that passing on knowledge and experience was highly valued and maybe the most import thing one could do.  ...... :D :D

Offline waltertore

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #37 on: January 02, 2022, 05:47:25 PM »
What bull%$#. You are old, but younger than me! I had the misfortune of spending a few years after High School in the US Army Field Artillery. The creed was something like, "teach what you know to those below you and learn what those above you know." After undergraduate and graduate degrees in engineering, and a 40 year career, I'd say that passing on knowledge and experience was highly valued and maybe the most import thing one could do.  ...... :D :D

You claim I ripped you off for giving money to our mission to employ people with disabilities. You say you gave a few hundred dollars I think?  That means you get whatever you want from me in recipe and other aspects of things I have developed my own unique way when we never offered any such things for donating?  Derrick, owner of Paulie Gee's Chicago put all that together for us and also had his design team create our logo.  To date we have employed over 20 people with cognitive disabilities, and we are forever grateful for the people that helped us get a bit of seed money to help pay for moving our stuff out here.   

Passing on the knowledge to others is something I deeply believe in and I do share much here but internet pals who I have no idea of who they are or what their intentions are, don't meet that criterion.  In the flesh is my way of sharing the skills of actually how I make pizza.  We have to be able to get along first and they must be committed to carrying on the mom/pop on deck all hours of prep and service.  It is called generational tried and true apprenticeship and I carry that on with deep respect for it. It is the one way the craft will stay solid in quality, history, and depth. 
SMILING WITH HOPE PIZZA MISSION STATEMENT
TO CREATE HOPE AND MEANING IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
http://www.smilingwithhopepizza.com/

Offline Pizzaman106

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #38 on: January 02, 2022, 05:48:47 PM »
:-D

Fortunately, we are not in trouble with either.  I take no offfense anymore to these type questions. The norm today is "share the craft" give it all away.  I am too old for this new way.  I was raised old school family only on business and recipes.  Plus those big names sharing the craft are making lots of money from product manufactures for doing so.  Small operations like ours get none of this and our secrets are what make us unique and my roots are deep at keeping a closed mouth as my mentors would have killed me if I shared the craft :)

I am sorry if that question was out of line.

Offline parallei

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Re: One man shop
« Reply #39 on: January 02, 2022, 05:56:27 PM »
You claim I ripped you off for giving money to our mission to employ people with disabilities. You say you gave a few hundred dollars I think?  That means you get whatever you want from me in recipe and other aspects of things I have developed my own unique way when we never offered any such things for donating?  Derrick, owner of Paulie Gee's Chicago put all that together for us and also had his design team create our logo.  To date we have employed over 20 people with cognitive disabilities, and we are forever grateful for the people that helped us get a bit of seed money to help pay for moving our stuff out here.   

Passing on the knowledge to others is something I deeply believe in and I do share much here but internet pals who I have no idea of who they are or what their intentions are, don't meet that criterion.  In the flesh is my way of sharing the skills of actually how I make pizza.  We have to be able to get along first and they must be committed to carrying on the mom/pop on deck all hours of prep and service.  It is called generational tried and true apprenticeship and I carry that on with deep respect for it. It is the one way the craft will stay solid in quality, history, and depth.

I don't think you ripped me off. I was happy to help. I was just thinking you might share as much as other pro's do here on the forum. I don't think I'm a bully. Best of luck.

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