Change is inevitable, isn’t it? Sure, there’s the “fun” change – when one of your recipes all the sudden tastes better than before – making you smile. But, there’s also the no fun change when, out of the blue, your core costs potentially go up. The recent tariff announcement potentially will raise your costs. So, just like that recipe when it needs tweaking because it just isn’t right, now is the time to tweak your business.
As you probably know, in business, you have two choices in times like this – generate more income (raise prices) or, reduce cost. Raising prices is a “quick fix” in some ways and sometimes the way to go. However, your customers will notice, and the “quick fix” can be short-lived if your sales drop. Lowering costs is always something worth looking at.
You can spend less in cold hard cash for expenses in the business. This can be a tough game sometimes leading to lower quality – which can then go back to the “customers noticing” issue. The best solution is to look at getting better – make your brewery more efficient. A great way to do that is to look into “Lean.” Lean is a method originally developed in the 1950’s by Toyota to improve by both lowering costs and increasing quality. It focuses on making processes more efficient – like eliminating time in between steps of processes; reducing waste such as in constantly chasing down information (like about your daily brewing activities for your tax reporting – sorry – we just had to get the plug in somewhere). Lean has been extended to all types of businesses and has ideas you can utilize to improve your brewery immediately. There’s plenty on the Internet about Lean, as well as books that can help you get started and see results now.
We hope this helps. We love the brewing industry – especially the small breweries – and our core goal is to help you do better. Check out how we can help.