In New York City, Make My Cake owner Aliyyah Baylor shares her tips for taking a personal or family business to the next level.
“For anyone looking to take their personal or family business to the next level, my advice is to expand thoughtfully along the way. Remember not to lose sight of why you started your business or what made you successful. When we started looking to open a new location, I was approached by customers pleading with me not to lose our mom-and-pop feel in the growth process. We’re always listening to our customers and making conscious decisions that ensure the culture of our company doesn’t change, even when our footprint does,” she says.
Baylor considers helps her co-workers to be ‘intra-preneuers’ – people who grow with the success of the company they are working for. “We have 10 full-time workers plus part-time employees and interns from local schools, and it’s my mission to make sure everyone feels empowered and accountable through training and open book management,” she says. “We set projections based on location and time of year, and we listen to our customers throughout the decision-making process. Together, we should be growing the business every day because if the business succeeds, we all succeed.”
One of the key pieces of advice award-winning Milk Bar owner Christina Tosi gives to young pastry chefs is to learn the rules first, then break them and have fun. It’s that independent spirit and innovation that has allowed Milk Bar to become one of the biggest names in baking in the country. On Sept. 22, Milk Bar opened its newest location in Los Angeles.
Milk Bar recently debuted its new pumpkin dulce de leche flavor in several of its products. The seasonal offering consists of vanilla spice cake, milk crumbs, dulce de leche, roasted pumpkin ganache, and roasted pepitas.
Pumpkin dulce de leche is available as a flavor in one of the bakery’s famous naked layer cakes, in its popular cake truffles, and in its MilkQuakes. Introduced last summer, MilkQuakes are Milk Bar’s soft serve ice cream answer to the McDonald’s McFlurry or the Dairy Queen Blizzard. Milk Bar’s new seasonal products will be available both online and in-store at its locations in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Toronto.