As Enterprise Facilitator each month I write about how entrepreneurs can assess their business strengths and limitations based on the Trinity of Management. Product, Market and Finance. What are you good at? What do you know about? Where in the business, do you like to spend your time? Faced with the challenge of starting a hospitality venture with no experience or knowledge of the industry I decided to get help from the vast array of resources in the County. In other words, I facilitated the Facilitator.
B&B or Vacation Property? Never knew there was a difference till I spent an hour with Rick Caruso of the Chamber. Rick is a wealth of information about the different types of accomodations available, strategies on marketing, payment options and more. The Product was a two story house, so Vacation Property it would be! With the goal of inexpensive but tasteful decor, I relied on County Traders and Dead People’s Stuff for ideas and furnishings. John, from Traders even let me bring back chairs when I found ones I liked better on the next visit. The walls are decorated with beautiful County scenes thanks to an amazing sale at Paper Images and my specialized guest soaps are hand crafted at Big Tub Botanicals. Gano Excel Coffee from Legendz in Rossmore will give guests the healthy boost they need.
How in demand would a property in town actually be? Richard Barrett from Sandbanks Vacations and Wayne Carruthers of 57 Mary Street gave me tips about using the shoulder seasons to creat a niche market, as well as ideas about amenities wanted by in town visitors. A last minute opening in a BIA publication allowed me to place my first ad! Beyond Parallel Design created a professional ad to fit the space – timely help, thanks.
As for finance, I talked with several local hosts who generously shared advice about fees, downpayment, cancellation and damage policies. I have settled on a payment system that looks easiest for a working host. After much free creative advice and patience on the part of Anne VanVlack of InfoLink, my site is up and we are ready for business!
If you would like free, confidential help with a business idea, why not give me a call? Let’s see what we can do together! 613-476-4240