Greater London Enterprise Awards 2021

24 | Greater London Enterprise Awards 2021 “I invested in editing software, learned how to use my DSLR camera and created two great videos. Companies were missing social events and although quiz nights were the big thing at the start of lockdown, people were growing bored and wanted something different. I created a social event package around cake baking and decorating. I also sent out equipment/ingredients to participants and I added a fun element of cocktail making whilst the cupcakes were baking.” Recently, Essence of Cake was voted Best Bespoke Cake Artist 2021 in the SME News Greater London Enterprise Awards, however Tracey’s reputation for quality and service was also recognised as she received a further award for Excellence in Team Building Events 2021. She tells us more about the team building event. “I’m working to relaunch this at the moment once again,” she comments. “With the pandemic, we of course had to put a hold on these events, but now the restrictions are being lifted and companies are returning their employees to work, we feel this is the best time to reintroduce what we offer. “Particularly as teams have not physically worked together in over a year, have seen team members leave and gain new ones, now is the time to team build and there’s no better way to do it than with cake!” Contact: Tracey Rashid Company: Essence of Cake Web Address: Self-made entrepreneur, Tracey Rashid, had had a passion for baking since she was a little girl. After finally realising her dream and opening her own business, Tracey recounts the ups and downs of her journey with Essence of Cake. It all started with a kids’ cookbook and a microwave! Now, some years later, Tracey Rashid is finally pursuing her passion of baking with her own business, Essence of Cake, and has fallen in love with cake all the more for it! “Cake is at the heart of everything I do,” Tracey laughs, and she reels off the services she offers, which include creating personalised celebration cakes (including weddings and corporate events), cupcakes and treats to make any celebration extra special. But it doesn’t stop there as Tracey also delivers workshops teaching people how to bake and decorate cakes, as well as hosting cake decorating parties for adults and children, plus afternoon teas. Lastly, Tracey offers corporate team building events as well as free quick tips, tutorials and advice/mentoring/business coaching to budding cake makers or those who wish to start their own cake business. Is there anything this dynamic woman doesn’t do? When it comes to cake, it appears not! Having come from a corporate background, Tracey is not simply a good baker, she has a business head too. With oodles of self-motivation, a keen eye for detail and a demand for perfection in everything she undertakes, Tracey is a reliable, organised and versatile choice for her clients which sets her firmly aside from competitors. “Because my customers can rely on me for customer service excellence, quality of product and a drive to achieve their cake goals and desires, they come back again and again,” she enthuses. “They have given amazing reviews and are happy to recommend me to their friends and family.” As with most businesses, the Covid-19 pandemic has been Tracey’s greatest challenge to date and she put time and effort into adapting her services and making changes in order to survive. She Best Bespoke Cake Artists 2021 & Award for Excellence in TeamBuilding Events 2021 thought of ways to get her cakes to customers during lockdown, including offering a free delivery service and discounted products too. Many hours were spent researching packaging, supplies, shelf life and how her cakes would travel, plus she picked 10 random customers to post items to, asking for their thoughts. “The feedback was astounding! I decided to go ahead with the service on a one-off and subscription basis and it has been sent all over England and even to Japan!” Tracey diversified her range and started to make mini cakes as she found customers were still desperate to celebrate certain events in lockdown but were conscious they didn’t want to waste money on a large cake. Hence, the mini 4-inch cake was born! Tracey also took her minimum afternoon tea order down from four people to two people as she noticed that a lot of couples were interested in this product. “The afternoon tea orders kept coming through and I was initially declining them,” she says. “I realised I was missing out on business so I changed the minimum order to two. With this simple change I fulfilled more afternoon tea orders in the last year than I did in the three previous years of the business altogether!” Tracey went all out to adapt her business model during the pandemic and came up with some great new ideas to ensure that she could still operate. She took the time to redevelop some of her workshops so she could deliver them online and she invested in an overhead camera arm. By doing this Tracey was able to offer an additional service in sending all the ingredients and equipment to participants so they could just open their boxes, click on a link, learn a new skill and have fun! Jul21231