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In Good Taste

“It’s all about confidence; if you feel confident in your offer, so will the client.”

Rivky Deutsch has learned this Temech lesson well.

Rivky entered the working world at the age of 17. “I’d taken a course in creating fruit platters,” she shares. “And I saw that the teacher, Tzippi Cohen, was the director of the Culinary Campus. I asked her if she could use help.”

That led to a job as a sous chef. Next, Rivky took a cooking course, then branched into patisseries. Eventually, she was assisting with the courses and ordering the food.

After four years, she felt she’d gained all she could, and she landed a job working for two female caterers. She also won first place in the dairy category at a culinary contest. Then corona hit.

“No events, no catering, no work.”

That didn’t last long. The ever-resourceful Rivky got a job in a school for youth at risk. She made lunch and kept the kitchen stocked.

“It was steady work, but I got bored. They wanted the same thing all the time — chicken, rice, potatoes. I need creativity and challenge. It was time to build my own business.”

Rivky prepared a line of nearly-ready-to-eat food — sauces for pasta, a mix for falafel, etc. — so customers could have the convenience of takeout with a homemade touch. However, there wasn’t enough interest.

She then started taking orders for dairy and parve events — companies who want to treat their workers, bas mitzvos, a fundraiser brunch. She offers a wide range of salads and veggie dishes, finger rolls, focaccias, and quiches, as well as a mouthwatering selection of desserts.

A year ago, she joined a Temech networking group and that turbocharged her business.

“I learned how to market and network confidently. It was great to sit with other business owners and hear about how they dealt with the same challenges I face.”

“One speaker focused on sales pitches, and her approach helped me improve those conversations. Good Jewish mothers are always worried about not having enough food. ‘I ordered for 20, is it going to be enough?’ they’ll ask.

“I realized that if I get flustered and say, ‘I’m not sure, maybe order a little more,’ they lose trust in me. But when I confidently answer, ‘Sure, it will be plenty!’ they’re reassured and more likely to use me. And there’s always plenty of food.”

Temech’s conference last year was a month after Rivky got married and she debated attending. She went and worked up the gumption to approach a potential client. The woman couldn’t use her, but she pointed her to a website where Rivky advertised. That led to her snagging her largest client.

There was also a mindset shift.

“We set goals every month, and that changed my approach. Instead of waiting for clients, I’m actively working on growing my business every month.

“This was such a positive experience that after finishing the networker group, I joined an accelerator group. I want to take this as far as I can.”

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