This week’s episode of Alex Polizzi had her eating fish and chips. Something that Alex Polizzi confessed she didn’t often do! I suspect I was not alone in wishing I was joining her as I watched the programme. But realistically great fish and chips are hard to come by and I will save myself for the next time I am over in Eyemouth my favourite place locally to enjoy a treat of fish and chips. But Alex Polizzi wasn’t just there to tantalise her taste buds she needed to turn yet another business around. There were some key business lessons that stood out in this episode. For me three stood out.
Firstly consistency is key. Alex Polizzi really enjoyed her fish and chips and you could visibly see her sigh of relief as she ticked off her list product good. No improvements needed here. And let’s be honest if you are not good at delivering your core product you really are in serious trouble. A point that really concerned me in last week’s episode where the beauty salon family had to go back to basics and re train! It was evident that this fish and chip shop did deliver yummy fish and chips! But the next day when a group was brought in to try them out almost to a person they complained about the batter which the previous day Alex had described as the best she’d ever tasted. On tasting it you could see the Polizzi taste buds were not impressed. And the point is? You need to deliver a consistent product always. And I am not saying that is easy it isn’t. But it is so important. Which is why it is good to always measure your service and ask for feedback from your customers so that you can quickly react to areas that need to be improved. A consistent good product is key not just if you are selling fish and chips but in any business.
The second point is sell your credentials. This fish and chip shop had their own batter recipe a business secret. They hand cut their potatoes to make the chips. Alex Polizzi suggested that they start making their own tartare sauce. All brilliant and fitting ideally into the current interest in shopping local and knowing where your food comes from. But they weren’t telling people about it. You can’t assume that people know about your product if you don’t tell them. You have to communicate and not once not twice but all the time. Make sure people know so as in this example the message about homemade and use of local products gets out there so much so that you establish a reputation for it.
Finally a point that Alex Polizzi makes all the time. Know your bottom line. Keep control of your finances, have a budget plan, review the plan monthly. Cash is king and always keep an eye on your bank account its out goings and incomings and chase any debt. Every week she asks the same question. What products make the most profit? Week after week business after business doesn’t know. You need to know this. One to promote your most profitable products but two if a product is not making you a profit. It will be doing the opposite losing you money so ditch them! Businesses have always prospered and failed on their finances even more so in the current climate so make sure you have yours under control and review on a regular basis what is and isn’t making you a profit. As what is profitable today might not be tomorrow.
I am rarely in the South West of England but if I was would consider this chip shop. My tummy is rumbling at the moment just at the thought of it! Let’s hope they learn the key lessons from their encounter with Alex. Consistency, sell your product by constant communication and watch that bottom line!