Successful cook Maria develops a taste for entrepreneurship

Papiamentu    Papiamento (Aruba)

Maria can not only cook well; she is also a true entrepreneur. She has been running her own catering company for six months. It started very small. She was cooking meals at home and sold them. Her husband brought the meals to everyone. She got more and more customers. Within a few years her cooking led to a nice, stable income. That got Maria excited, and she decided to expand her business.

“It was a big gamble. Her husband quit his job.”

She now rents a commercial space around the corner. With the money she had saved up, she bought four stoves, a few worktables, all the necessary cooking equipment and a professional dishwasher. She also hired 2 chefs. Her husband quit his job and helps her with all the necessary chores. Their oldest son also works with them.

In the first few months, the emphasis is still on meal delivery. But soon she creates entire buffets. Additional staff is added and the small hallway that’s part of the rental property is soon filled with supplies and lots of tables and chairs that the company now also rents out for parties and events. Her husband has exchanged his SUV for a company van. The large letters on the van read: "Kushina Maria".

I make an appointment with Maria to assess the risks of her business. As it turns out, Maria has been so busy with the day-to-day business that she has "forgotten" to take some important preventative measures. What about a fire extinguisher? She doesn't have one, even though she works with fire every single day. And there are many other preventative measures she could be taking. Maria says that she hasn’t bought any insurance yet. Without even saying anything, in my mind I can see so many miserable factors that could destroy her beautiful company in an instant. The hospitality industry has to deal with very specific risks. Think about money for example. Does Maria have a secure place to store the cash she receives?

I make a list of preventative measures that Maria and her husband can take care of themselves. I also tell her that she can cover bigger risks by getting insurance for a small monthly fee. She is happy with all the information.

When I visit the company a few months later, I see a fire extinguisher hanging in the corner by the stoves. That makes me feel good.

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Sharon Steens-crop.jpg
Sharon Steens
ENNIA Corporate Insurance Specialist