"What I know about Running Coffee Shops" Book Review (2023)


Introducting a new series... Pro Tips. What I hope to do is give out Short tips or resources that you need to know if you work in our around coffee, or want to do one day. Today I recommend a book called "What I know about Running Coffee Shops" by Colin Harmon.

You can grab it online here: goo.gl/7o3LF4

#colinharmon #coffee #bookreview


Just say, pro tip pro tip pro tip with enthusiasm, pro tip with enthusiasm, pro tip, what pro tip, no pro pro tip all right protip time, but I'm hoping to these protip series every week, maybe every two weeks.

And hopefully just give a quick tip away for anyone who's working in coffee who owns a coffee shop, or who is looking to start a career in coffee.

And these are just things I've learned along the way they've been super helpful to me in the last couple of years and I want to pass them on so they're helpful for you as well.

But if you're thinking about starting a coffee shop, you're, probably thinking about all the awesome things that come along with running a coffee shop drinking lots of coffee, seeing your friends, all the time being super social, having the kind of cool place in town.

There are a lot of cool.

Cool things about running a coffee shop, owning a coffee shop.

But when the rubber meets the road there's, also a lot of other stuff that most people don't begin to think about when you open a coffee shop, you are running a full-on business and this.

And once you start does not stop, you know, at times I found it to be a little overwhelming all the things are on your plate, all the people that you're caring for your employees.

And in the world of coffee there's, a lot of stuff about how to make coffee how to nerd out on coffee.

But there seems to be very little there's more and more right now, which is awesome about leadership within the coffee industry.

Some of the back end of the coffee industry as far as numbers.

And some of the kind of bigger picture things.

You need to know about systems and all that sort of stuff if you're gonna run a coffee business.

So my first pro tip this week is to read a book and I want to recommend to you guys a book that I've read probably four times.

Now, it's sort of like my textbook, my coffee shop, owning Bible, right now for everything I need to know.

So that is what I know about running a coffee shop by mr.

Colin Harmon.

So the first thing to say is that this is not like a guide book that he is proclaiming to be the best coffee shop business type book, he's very clear about saying, this is what he knows about running coffee shops, but he's opened a few and I found that the information here has been super super helpful.

So in this book, there is a tiny bit of coffee nerdery, how to make better coffee, steaming milk, all those sorts of things, but more and more.

What you're gonna find here is the backend of running a coffee business.

So we're, talking staffing, we're, talking numbers, we're talking growth, we're talking all sorts of things that they got that you don't often hear about in the coffee biz.

So I would highly recommend reading this book.

If you are interested in opening a coffee shop, if you're thinking about it, or if you do already, because this is going to give you some perspective and some insight into the coffee industry that is really invaluable Collins gone through all of his openings of his shops and sort of analyzed the best practices and written them down in here for you.

So he goes over how to do a job interview how to think about profit and loss.

And and your pricing of your products he talks about how to find a spot to lease and things like that.

You might not initially think about with water supply and electricity things.

You want to know before you sign on the dotted line for at least one of my favorite chunks of the book is when Colin talks about kind of sequencing and systems when you're delivering beverages and I think a lot of times coffee shop owners.

Think, if only I had that piece of equipment, or if I had a new espresso machine or a new grinder, we could be faster and serve more customers.

And he goes over some of the sequencing that needs to happen to have a truly fast and effective cafe, and that really challenged so am I thinking about do I need a to group or a three group machine.

A lot of us feel like we're so busy that we need a three group machine, and that we gonna need two people working on it.

And so he kind of goes through a sequence from order to exit of a customer and how you can line those up.

And some of the numbers he put out really humbled me and go CAC and I can really surely tweak my speed as a barista, but also the speed of my team and the systems of my team.

So that was really really helpful for me and I think a lot of people would benefit from that, because they're gonna go spend money on machines instead of thinking about, how could they organize the structure from start to finish of their transactions with their customers? One of the best things Colin hasn't here is the basics.

And this is just a list of things that if you're not doing in your coffee shop, you really need to start doing them.

And a lot of these are really great and really like I've, always thought, yes, that's exactly right with a bad.

One is have room-temperature butter, I, don't know, if your video coffee shop, you order like a pastry or muffin, and they give you butter and it's, fridge, cold temperature, it's horrible.

So just stuff like that get get newspapers delivered keep the washrooms clean.

Keep the doors open don't stand in the doorway.

If someone comes to the counter, the staff got to stop talking Amelie.

So it's just sort of stuff that is really important to think about if you're gonna run a coffee shop may talks about how to get new customers in the morning, how to get new customers at lunchtime all this sort of stuff.

So I, can't recommend.

This book enough, I'm, not friends with this guy, I don't know him.

He has not asked me to endorse his book, I just bordered it on Amazon or whatever was.

And it has become like a true.

Text book for me for running a coffee shop, I often will go back to it.

And look at his numbers, especially about the margins of profitability and that's something that a lot of coffee shops struggle with I think a lot a lot of coffee shops will just be breaking even, but how do you make your coffee shop profitable, turning profit and make it so that it can be something sustainable? So you can take care of employees.

Anyways, pick this book up read it read it three or four times if you are interested at all in coffee, you need to read this book, what I know about running coffee shops, Colin Harmon, pick it up.

And that concludes our pro tip.


What do you know about coffee shops? ›

A coffeehouse, coffee shop, or café is an establishment that primarily serves coffee of various types, notably espresso, latte, and cappuccino. Some coffeehouses may serve cold drinks, such as iced coffee and iced tea, as well as other non-caffeinated beverages. In continental Europe, cafés serve alcoholic drinks.

How do I run a successful coffee shop? ›

7 Ways To Run A More Successful Coffee Shop
  1. Take cafe management seriously. ...
  2. Your team should know what you're selling. ...
  3. Show your customers you appreciate them. ...
  4. Show employees you appreciate them. ...
  5. Be a true third place. ...
  6. Use automation wherever possible. ...
  7. Optimize your ordering area.
Nov 30, 2021

Is running a café a good business? ›

In short, coffee shops are extremely profitable due to the high profit margins and low cost of stock. Like any business, effective management of costs will ensure your café is a success.

What do you learn from working in a coffee shop? ›

Learn how to manage people and be creative.

It is likely that whichever job you end up in, there will become a time where you have to manage people. Working in a coffee shop requires excellent communication skills which in turn, can help you to manage, train and learn people more effectively.

What makes a café successful? ›

Excellent customer service is the hallmark of any successful business, and most especially in the food services industry. Combine a great location, top quality products, and great customer service and chances are you will have a very successful coffee shop.

What is important in a coffee shop? ›

Excellent Customer Service. This goes without saying, but excellent customer service is a must to ensure a good coffee shop experience. Customers want to feel that they are cared for while they are in your shop and that any queries they have or issues that might arise are handled quickly and efficiently.

What makes coffee shops profitable? ›

each coffee shop is different: variables like the location, costs, market share, price-points, product profit margins, branding, and management all play an important role in determining your profits. Additionally, the more coffee shop locations you have, the more expenses and the more revenue you may be able to make.

How do I attract more customers to my coffee shop? ›

Here are ten ideas to help funnel new clients into your coffee-perfumed cafe.
  1. Keep Prices Affordable. ...
  2. Appeal to Millennials. ...
  3. Create Seasonal Drinks. ...
  4. Be Savvy on Social Media. ...
  5. Make Your Space Standout. ...
  6. Make Sure You're Mobile Friendly. ...
  7. Create Online Deals. ...
  8. Embrace Conscious Consumerism.
Nov 25, 2018

What is the success rate of opening a coffee shop? ›

However, not all coffee shops are successful. According to an April 2019 survey, around 62% of independent coffee shops fail within the first five years of opening, while 17% close within the first 12 months.

How hard is running a café? ›

Running a successful cafe doesn't need to be difficult, but with so many things seemingly stacked against you from the start – busy and bustling workdays, long hours, and steep competition from other coffee shops, to name a few – it can seem almost impossible to get a new cafe business up and running.

How many customers does a coffee shop have per day? ›

The average number of coffee visitors ranges from 150 to 500 people, depending on the size of the coffeehouses, its popularity, and available offers.

Can you make a living running a coffee shop? ›

With two or more locations, owner salaries can rise to $100,000 or more. This is very location‑dependent, of course, with owners often earning more in high cost‑of‑living cities. Coffee shops that also have a roasting operation with wholesale sales typically lead to higher owner salaries as well.

What do people love most about coffee shops? ›

Professional, Quality Coffee

With professional coffee machines, steamers and premium coffee, customer's get the ultimate coffee experience that, for many, cannot be achieved at home. For the average coffee drinker, this is the most convenient way to enjoy high-quality coffee.

Why do you love coffee shops? ›

In simple terms…they give you exactly what you want; that jolt of caffeine that makes you feel like you can survive the day in one beautiful delicious cup. Plus everyone knows that coffee is part of a healthy balanced diet so you ARE doing your part.

How do you interview for a coffee shop? ›

General questions
  1. So, tell me about yourself .
  2. What is your favorite drink to make? ...
  3. What do you consider your top strengths?
  4. How do you handle stress at work?
  5. Why do you think you are a good fit for this position?
  6. How would your previous supervisor describe you?
  7. Why do you want to work here?
Jun 24, 2022

Why are coffee shops so good? ›

Baristas have tons of knowledge about making coffee

“In addition to the knowledge, skills, and experience professional baristas have, coffee shops themselves are also stacked with professional equipment," says Genevieve Kappler, Roasting Plant Coffee's roast master and brewing expert technologist.

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