Tasteful Ventures

Traveling cook. 1 for 1 at startups.

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Death to Tipping

This essay is for restaurant owners, chefs, and anyone who wants to restore humanity in the restaurant business.

You’re thinking it. But I’m going to say it: Tipping sucks.

You know that feeling of dread as a Square register swivels toward you for a 20% tip on a muffin? Or the weird suspicion that you’re getting side-eyes from servers as you’re figuring out how much you’re going to tip on your bill?

Blame tipping.

Now what if we were to magically make tipping disappear? Think about the diner for a second. What if, by removing tips from your restaurant, you’ll actually end up delighting more guests, improving your food, and retaining employees? What if it’s really that easy? If there’s one thought experiment I’m willing to gamble on, that’s it: No tipping means better business.

Happier customers

Guests should never have to think about their bill. But with tipping you’re asking...

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How to Survive in SF as a Broke Startup

[Update] tl;dr: Listen to my short NPR Marketplace Tech interview instead (starts at 3:30): http://bit.ly/1AYTjDo

I lived like a roach for the past year.

Before my startup failed, my three co-founders and I survived on a mere $450 to $500/person/month. This included rent, utilities, food, travel and miscellaneous expenses. We never had to resort to cup noodles and always grubbed like poor princes.


How was this possible? That I grew up in a working class, Asian American household (cheap), lived in an Asian American SF neighborhood (super cheap), and shopped at Asian supermarkets (super fucking cheap) played a big role.

You have my word.

Now, the five following coveted secrets are for my fellow entrepreneurs who crap at the thought of hitting ramen profitability in an overpriced city. Here’s to your startup surviving just a bit longer.

1. Live with your co-founders:

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