From BPO director to entrepreneur

Kim Mendoza Owner EUT (Eat, Relax, Travel) Café, Bochog Litson House, Avocadoria

“I visit all of my stores daily to check on critical aspects of the business, such as customer service.”

SPENDING nearly 17 hours a day monitoring social media can be dizzying. Yet that’s what restaurateur and former BPO (business process outsourcing) leader Kim Mendoza has been doing since leaving the corporate world three years ago.

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Running his restaurants since 2019 has given Mendoza the “freedom of time” he always sought before getting into the food and beverage business. “You are the boss. Your rules. Your way,” he said.

Its restaurants are all based in Quezon City: EUT (Eat, Unwind, Travel) Café and Bochog Litson House are in the Batasan neighborhood, while Avocadoria is in Ever Gotesco Mall along Commonwealth Avenue. It has a very lean staff, totaling 11 people for the three sites.

“I use social media to promote our stores,” said Mendoza, who has decided to forego more expensive traditional advertising. “I’m also joining online sales groups to make it more public. I’m collaborating with influencers and famous people for an X-deal.”

Prior to switching to F&B, Mendoza was doing freelance franchising work. “I’m still in it,” he admitted, adding that the lucrative commissions “helped me market my stores easily.”

Predictably, he faced challenges when the pandemic hit. “Having the right people on your team is important,” he said. “Competent people and with a real concern. I also had to replace staff. I did many retrainings and upgrades.”

“Another factor is the location and the purchasing power of the customers around you. Our location is more of a residential area. And 80% of the people in Batasan are below middle class,” he added. .

During these difficult times, Mendoza is proud to be able to help others by providing jobs that can support their families and loved ones. “You can serve your community with your various hotel-quality restaurants and dishes,” he said.

He had to make adjustments and in doing so learned how to attract new customers as well as maintain the brand image.

“I deal with customer complaints,” Mendoza said. “I visit all of my stores daily to check on critical aspects of the business such as customer service, inventory, sales reports, etc.”

“I treat all of my customers the same,” he said, but added that regulars “receive the latest and upcoming menu which will make them more excited. We also provide loyalty cards so that ‘they come back”.

Initial childhood ambition

    Kim Mendoza in Taiwan in 2019, his last trip outside the country before the pandemic hit.  CONTRIBUTED PHOTOS

Kim Mendoza in Taiwan in 2019, his last trip outside the country before the pandemic hit. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOS

Mendoza’s initial childhood ambition was to become a doctor, “but that didn’t happen due to our family’s financial situation at the time. I decided to join the BPO industry, which is eventually became my bread and butter for 14 years before starting my own business.”

He earned a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology from San Beda University. “Unfortunately, I couldn’t apply what I learned from my college life to my first job which was in a call center,” he said.

Responding to customer or customer requests while visiting its restaurants every day is what keeps Mendoza’s days busy. “It’s all about time management,” he said.

“Finding time with your family despite the workload is [also] Very important. Use your phone’s calendar to block important dates. It also helps me organize my time with my loved ones.”

Mendoza still manages to relax and spend quality time with his family. Taiwan was the last destination he visited in 2019 before the pandemic hit. “I like to go to humorous bars with or without friends and sing my favorite Régine [Velasquez] songs,” he said. “It helps me stay sane. Singing keeps my heart and my whole being fit and in good spirits.

The staff at the EUT (Eat, Unwind, Travel) Café.

The staff at the EUT (Eat, Unwind, Travel) Café.

“With my family, we go out once in a while and have dinner in a restaurant in Quezon City. I prefer to watch movies on Netflix or in a big cinema. I want to go to places I’ve never been before or try to other unconventional things. I love to swim once in a while.”

His parents and siblings provide emotional and moral support and he noted that “[t]The wisdom you receive from your mother, in particular, is extremely helpful.”

Unsurprisingly, his mother is also his role model. “She’s been my idol since day one,” he said. “She always reminded me that ‘No one will help you but you and your family. So always take care of yourself. Learn to surrender everything to God’.”

About me

First paycheck

P5,000 to Lexber International in Quezon City

morning ritual

Devotional prayer then telephone session

Time spent on social networks

Almost 17 hours a day

Model

My mother, Lucita Mendoza, and Christian Gaza, the famous influencer

Better skill

Sales and marketing plus customer service

Objective

Getting comfortably rich so I can already ask my parents to retire

fact of life

I like to travel to different places, especially abroad.

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