I’m sure some of you might know by now how obsessed I am with (good) coffee. I am, as my Instagram handle says “a girl on caffeine”. After all I named my interview with language professional series Cappuccino Books. Since I spend so much time choosing and preparing my favorite drink, I sometimes think about business while it’s brewing and I wanted to share a few truths about business, inspired by coffee, with you.
Do tell me if you agree!
Truths That Coffee Taught Me About Business
- Be consistent in the quality you offer:To your readers, to your general audience, to your principles. Just as you want your coffee to be fresh and delicious every day and to maintain the same quality standards; just as you visit your favorite coffee place because they have never disappointed you by serving you stale, burnt or weak coffee.
- Be open:Don’t be afraid to try new ideas and see if and how they work for you and your business. You try different coffees when you travel or are out of your caffeine comfort zone, so why not trying new approaches for your business, too?
- You don’t need to sugarcoat it:Be clear with your company mission, the gap it fills in the market, the services you provide to your clients. Good coffee can be enjoyed black – plain and straight and your business should be able to stand strong based on the high quality of the services you offer.
- But add some flavor too:Not all coffees are the same: depending on origin, roasting, grounding, brewing method and so many more, a simple espresso might have huge differences in flavor. Try to emphasize your unique points, your special skills and what makes you different from your competitors.
- Good things come to those who wait.No, I’m not trying to justify procrastination with a coffee here (even though I’m tempted). Coffee making is all about time, stages and processes: from planting to drying to roasting to grinding and, finally, brewing, the preparation of coffee has several steps and specific procedures to go through each. This is also true for business, of whatever type. You can’t just jump from A to Z, you have to go through stages and invest time to each of them, in order to harvest [sic] success.
- Sometimes you just need to unwind:Many of those procedures involve “resting” – the same could be said for various issues you might face in running your business. I often find that when I am “stuck” with a book I’m translating or when a project won’t proceed as I would like, it is better to take a day off and let it “rest” in my mind than taking immediate, often hasty, action. And you know what? It works. I’ve advocated the importance of a day off in the past, too – read How to avoid/deal with a burnout here.
- Customize it:Now, it’s not fun to drink what everyone else is drinking, is it? You won’t get to discover new, exciting things this way. So why do what everyone else is doing in business? Try new things, experiment and add a little bit of that awesome “you” in your corporate style.
- Be fair in trade.Fair trade coffee is coffee that has been certified as having been produced through partnerships that are based on dialogue, transparency, equality and respect. It goes without saying that your business model should value the same principles and that you should daily try to maintain the highest possible quality for your services.
- Be natural:Natural living is all the rave today. So just like you want your coffee free of artificial flavors and harmful additives, keep your business straight, invest in basic good practices, beware of dodgy partnerships and always be clear about your goals, commitments and means. It will pay off eventually.
- ENJOY IT!Yes, it takes ages to properly prepare a decent cup of coffee and fair trade, natural beans might be more expensive but it is totally worth it when you are sipping this delicious, rich, full-bodied blend that has the power to make your day! It is the same with business: because nobody wants to spend their lives working on a job they hate: take some time to appreciate it, find things you love about it and whatever you do, do it with passion!
Good coffee can be enjoyed black and your business should be able to stand strong based on the high quality of the services you offer.