Renata and Mike Masurczak opened "dreiRaum" in Düsseldorf in 2010. The decision of the two bank workers to become self-employed with a bistro was a spontaneous one – and one they do not regret to this day.

Renate und Mike Masurczak

Owners of the bistro "dreiRaum" in Düsseldorf

Renate und Mike Masurczak

Owners of the bistro "dreiRaum" in Düsseldorf

Watch the video to find out how attention to detail made the "dreiRaum" bistro a success

Mr Masurczak, you and your wife opened “dreiRaum” in autumn 2010. And that’s in spite of not having any experience as restaurateurs, right?

Mike Masurczak: Yes, that’s right, we both have a background in banking. We actually only wanted to take a six-month sabbatical from work. But then we saw an ad that read “Wanted: leaseholders for small bistro” ...

... and you jumped at the chance?

Renata Masurczak: Everything was just right; the timing was perfect, we had a good feeling about it and we were ready to take the next step. Two weeks later, we had the keys, and a month later we were opening the bistro.

What did it take to achieve this?

MM: Enjoyment, stamina and passion. To be honest, we didn’t have a great deal of practical experience and had to learn everything in baby steps.

What’s your biggest challenge at “dreiRaum”?

MM: Our own desire to make everyone happy again and again. We have a very broad clientele with a variety of expectations when it comes to restaurants, the food and the drinks. And meeting everyone’s expectations isn’t always easy.

25 per cent of the café and bistro owners surveyed said they would prefer a different location – why’s that?

RM: Location is a key success factor, so you really need to take a good look at a place before you make a decision. We don’t really have any direct competition here, so it’s perfect.

Do restaurateurs need reliable support?

RM: Most definitely! Experienced suppliers who know what we need and who can deliver quickly are a great help.

More than 20 per cent of the people we surveyed hoped to expand their business. Is this something you would consider?

RM: We have a lot of guests and good employees, so I’m perfectly happy with the way things are. But my husband would like to run something a little bigger ...

MM: It doesn’t necessarily have to be bigger, but I can envisage maybe adding something else. I often come across things that make me think: we could show what we’re capable of again with that.

What advice would you give to a new business in the food service industry?

MM: Keep your feet on the ground and don’t get ahead of yourself. It’s better to learn things gradually in practice. That’s our personal recipe for success.

Was becoming self-employed the right decision?

RM: It’s the best thing we ever did! Neither of us can remotely imagine being employed by someone any more.

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