By Aimee Woodley
Recently I sat down with Alexis Kallen, of Lexie’s Café, to talk with her about her experience in launching their new business here in Eagle River.
Launching a new business is a big deal, even if you’ve done it before, as the Sabado family has. Did you know that Lexie’s Café has been around before? The current location is actually the third incarnation of Lexie’s Café. After the retirement of Ron Sabado, the girls (mom- Brenda, and daughters- Alexis and Rachel) started dreaming of a café that would play to each of their strengths.
Having run their own business before, they knew that even with all the planning in the world, there were still bound to be unexpected bumps in the road, so they purposefully set aside extra funds. Having that foresight is something many new small business owners don’t have. Creating a business plan but planning for wiggle room is crucial. Even with an extra cushion, the unexpected still threw curveballs at them. Even though they switched from an established location, they still needed new deposits for all of their utilities. When moving into a new space, inspecting the space for outlet placement and appliance hookups can save a lot of heartaches. In the case of Lexie’s Cafe, they found they would not only need new appliances, but they would also need to tweak all of their recipes and cook times to accommodate for the change. Even the voltage requirements of their new location threw them for a loop.
Owning your own business is also very time-consuming. Most people don’t realize how much you will be juggling your business and your free time with your family. Thankfully the Sabado family gets to work with each other, and they love spending time together.
After making it through all of the unexpected snags with the initial launching, small businesses can still run into more obstacles. Finding qualified employees can be a hardship for even the biggest corporation, but for small businesses, it can be crippling.
All in all, the Sabado ladies are happy to be serving up smiles and great food to Eagle River.
Alexis wanted to share some pieces of advice with future entrepreneurs. She recommends going into your venture with an open mind. Set up a business plan but be ready for your plan to change. Talk with your whole family before starting anything to make sure everyone is on board. They all need to understand the hard work that is involved because it will affect the entire family. Set aside extra money, but be prepared to set aside extra time also. Whether you do it yourself or hire out a contractor, be ready for everything to take longer than you think it should.
Lexie’s has only been open for a few months, but they are already leaving their mark on Eagle River. Be sure to stop by, have a cup of coffee, and get to know this great family.