Where to begin?!

5 replies [Last post]

I'm an aspiring innkeeper and I really can't wait to one day get started, but I have a few concerns...

I'm a professional chef, so cooking is no problem for me and I love to make people feel comfortable and at home, which is why I know this buisness will do me well. I'm just curious...should I look for some sort of buisness education?? Should I go to buisness school, or something like it? I don't know the first thing about running any kind of buisness and I surely don't want to be in over my head. I want to have a firm hold on every aspect of my future inn once I get started.

As of now, my goal is to have some sort of a start on this within the next 8-10 years. (I know, I know, that's quite a ways away, but I personally feel like I'm a tad too young to be jumping into this. I'm not quite ready to settle down just yet.) Now, in the next few years, how should I plan? I don't even know where to begin! Any helpful advise would be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much.


HeartOTexas's picture

Running any small business can be challenging. You have to divide your time across so many different things; operations, book keeping, marketing, to name a few. I've found that one of the most important things that is obvious but can sometimes get overlooked, is the importance of surrounding yourself with trustworthy and helpful people to provide you with input. It goes a long way to have someone you can rely on.

Breakfast Diva's picture

Start by taking an aspiring innkeepers course. It will allow you to learn more about what happens day to day and an overall picture of what it means to be an innkeeper. From there, you can determin where your weaknesses are and educate yourself and it would also help to get some hands on experience. Some courses offer hands on during the course.

Oh, and here's the most important thing...put away a lot of money!!! It's going to be a bigger financial investment that what you're probably imagining right now!

Madeleine's picture

At least take a innkeeping class. They are good in that most of them will take the blinders off in re how owning an inn is not just cooking and making people feel at home. You do need those parts, but there's a lot more to the day even if you hire out all the work.

I took a small business class. You can contact SCORE or your local Chamber of Commerce to see if they offer anything like that. Some community colleges offer a small business class as well. My class was 4 months long and covered everything about owning any small business including bookkeeping & accoutning, marketing, how to organize yourself, how to hire employees, taxes, everything you need including developing a business plan to take to the bank for financing.


Everyday, for good or ill, we intersect with some else's story and become a part of it.


gillumhouse's picture

I do not know where you are located, but here in WV several of the colleges and universities have a Hospitality Program. Several of them have operating B & Bs on campus for "hands-on" experience. You may want to consider doing that. If nothing else, it would give you a good resume for the future in addition to learning the business side of things - accounts/marketing/etc.

You will learn a lot reading posts here but a solid background of education never hurts.

Joey Camb's picture

I would definately recommend some sort of book keeping class most accountants charge by the hour so the more you can do youself the cheaper it is in the long run. Also 50% of new businesses fail in the first year and you know why? accounts they just aint doing them. I used to work with small businesses in a former life and most that were struggling didn't have a grasp on the basics ie how much mortgage are you paying? what are the local taxes and so on. Also some B&B's in some areas arn't allowed to serve cooked breakfast so if you are wanting to use your skills then don't be buying a B&B in one of those states. Wherever you look at make sure the numbers add up occupancy levels for the area will they bring in enough money? if the occupancy is low compared to the area then why? Start making a list of questions to ask = ie start a file now and start reading there is no such thing as being too prepared. There are also prospective owner courses all over and internships that would also be a good place to start.


Don't mess with me today or I will kill you!!!!


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