Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me—is an idiomatic expression which means learn your mistakes and don’t get screwed all over again. The funny thing is I knew all along this would happen and I let it happen. So Fool me once, shame on me! Fool me twice—really when will I ever learn the lesson! This blog is part of a series of blogs regarding how the business I ventured into that went horribly wrong almost even before we started, yet, I was still compelled to go into it with all my gut feeling telling me not to go into this business and not trust this one person. This blog is Part 1 of the series. Part 2 can be read on Are Your Business Partners Lying or Deceiving You–Part 2—Dishonest and Deceitful Operator
I was so excited that I could not wait and tell the world that one of my dreams came through! I have been wanting to go into business where there are bricks and mortars involved—not just an online presence. It’s a dream of mine for a long time but don’t know how to go about it and I also don’t have any capitals for it. I was approached to go into a business venture late last year I listened to the proposal—and that’s, How I Ended Up In Business which I wrote about. I really thought it could work if we put our sweat and blood into it—that is if we really work it and stick to the plan.
The Business Plan
With the short turnaround space that we have to get this plan going and into business, I had a lot of sleepless nights and delayed other projects so this one could be finalised and be operational. Some of the business plan I will talk about here as they have gone really sour.
2 Business Partners— John (not his real name) and I will go in business. There will only be two of us as partners.
Owner operated—the owners of the business will need to be there and put their hours in. We talked about this before the plan was created. The owner operated setup was to cut costs whilst we were trying to build the business and branding. Our hours of operation would consist of an employee during the day who will be working with me and then with John during nights. When the business was supposedly in the green— John would go back to his other business that he calls his “baby” and I will have full management run on this business.
Staff—We would be hiring one staff only to cover the shifts. This would be Skye—a very loyal and friendly staff that I will blog more about some other time. His role was not only to cover the shifts but really learn the roles needed in the kitchen because he will be in-charge of the whole kitchen—a manager in the making.
Operate At Least Six Months—The business was to stay afloat for at least six months because we knew there was a job to be done. The establishment was empty and it was our job to fill the seats in.
What Really Happened
3 Business Partners—John was adamant I should see Campbelltown City Hotel one day. I couldn’t understand it then why the urgency to really be there that day. We sat around for an hour, then hours. I ask what we are doing her and John replies that we are checking out the place. Absorbing the clientele—inside the dining room where there was nobody but us! We talked some more and then John says there will be one more person the last person to come and see this place and see if it’s really is worth doing. Steve (not his real name) became our third partner.
Seriously, why not just tell me in the first place that there’s another person who he is bringing into the business. We had yet another wasted hours. Hours that I need as I am extremely busy trying to find ways to make a living for myself!
Deceitful Owner—I suspect John had no intention of working in the business in the first place. This was evident because he does not show for shifts but will call and ask how things are going. In fact he only calls and asks how much money we made today. I confronted him one day about the plan, how he has to be there so the money we save from staffing can be used into the business.
John had the audacity to tell me, that I should have had him sign our business plan that he has to be there working then he would do it! Such nerve! It’s his foundation in the first place! He was the person to initiate all these!
Staff —I did mention one staff right? When we first opened, I was expecting to have about 5 people. Us the three owners and two others. Instead we had five staff and 3 owners. That’s 8 people! Our insurance only covers us 7 staff!
We operated 2 months and closed TWICE—Within the first month, our partnership of three became 2. John who is the most deceitful, dodgiest operator left us in one month. I’m most peeved with this person, because he knew what we are up against. He knew that it the place was empty and we had a job at hand. This idiot, told me that we had to close because it was dead and no body was turning up. Well what do you expect? This was the challenge well before we came! The pricess of his menu was so expensive that nobody would buy food from us! Campbelltown has a high rate of unemployed people and we priced ourselves out!
The second month we closed for good with Steve being the deciding factor because he’s a chef and I am not and he was financing the the fall backs whenever we could not reach our weekly sales. We changed our food by then and we were not in par of break even but close to. But for some reason, Steve lost his will to keep going and had enough. In his view, he was keeping the bistro open just so we can pay Skye. He did not want any more part of that as he didn’t see much initiative from Skye. The thing with Steve is, as a chef and normal workflow in this industry. Chef’s would tell you as a chef who cares about your work, you will put in extra -unpaid hours in your shift. To prep up normally 1-2hrs before your actual shift starts. Skye wasn’t doing that. I am very sure he’s not even aware this is the culture here, that this the norm here in Australia. In defence to Sky he’s new to Australia and I”m sure he’s not aware of our own culture here in Australia. Everybody who comes into Australia will have a fair bit of adjustments to do.
Why The Business Plan Was Not Followed
Steve got a copy of the business plan but I know he only got part of of the business plan. I don’t think I sent him the whole thing. The business plan was still in the making as we doved into the business so I had a lot of work to do. But the bulk of the plan was already there. Steve did get something but I’m not sure what I sent him.
The business plan was never followed in the first place by my first nemesis! It was like I wrote the plan just for the sake of it and it was never followed through. When presented, one of the partners even had the audacity to tell me it needed to be signed! This person was the father of all creations if you like. He initiated this business, he brought us all together to do this business. He’s the first person who started chipping away from the foundation which he built the business. Real dishonest and deceptive and extremely non-trustworthy person who will lie to his teeth!
Don’t be a fool and get a bad reputation and get decieved like the author of this article for not knowing exactly what to do when running a bistro. It is very disappointing and it goes straight to your heart to know you workd hard and your business failed because you have had to rely on other people. Don’t rely on other people GET TO KNOW YOUR RESTAURANT BUSINESS TODAY!
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I’d be interested on what you think of this venture and what you would have done if you knew already that there is a big possibility that you are about to go into business with somebody who is untrustworthy yet somehow still compelled to do it because it is something you want to do.
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