Truffles: Tell us about your job.
Elenore: I was hired to be a chocolatier and used to just make chocolate, but in the last year, I’ve become responsible for tracking inventory and making sure our retail store has what it needs. Every day I check what they have, what’s getting low and what needs to be restocked. We might have our products on a shelf in the kitchen but so that they’re not running out or going around in the middle of the day asking, “where’s the ???". I try to stay on top of it all. And I also I might give a heads-up on our kitchen board for Rob, our kitchen manager, so we can add what we need for our kitchen production.
Truffles: Sounds like you’re sort of Sweet Designs version of an air-traffic controller?
Elenore: I never thought of it that way, but I think you’re right since I’m the link between the kitchen and our retail store. There’s nothing worse than having a customer walk up to the door and ask for dark potato chips and we have three pieces. It’s tough, particularly these days because we can’t always predict what customers will be asking for. We do our best. It’s a balancing act to always get it right.
I love being organized and being prepared so that we can give our customers what they’re looking for.
Truffles: How did you keep up with holiday demand?
Elenore: Christmas was unbelievable. Despite COVID, it was crazy busy. I used to bring out two stacks of boxes at a time for restocking and it seemed like they just flew off the shelves.
Truffles: What was your path to Sweet Designs and how long have you been here?
Elenore: Hard to believe but I’ve been here 7 years already. I got my degree in Interior Design at Ohio University and worked in the field for a few years. I was never happy anywhere and found myself job-hopping. Even though I did an internship in interior design my senior year, I knew before I graduated that I didn’t think I was going to like it in that world.
After my time working in interior design, I began waitressing and spent many years as a waitress and then I spent a couple years with a landscaping company.
I saw a job opening with Sweet Designs and Ines was willing to train me how to make chocolate and, because of my restaurant experience, I felt comfortable in the kitchen and was willing to learn. It’s amazing how Sweet Designs has grown over the past seven years.
Truffles: Any big surprises about our customers?
Elenore: Yes, how much people know our products and how much they love them. We have lots of regulars who know what they like.
Truffles: So, tell us more about what you do to unwind.
Elenore: With hindsight and what I know now, I probably should have studied horticulture in college because in my free time, I garden like crazy and absolutely love it. I do everything organically and I love to start with seeds. Every year I try something I haven’t grown before. This year I’m going to try kohlrabi.
Truffles: Your favorite chocolates?
Elenore: I go through phases. It’s so hard not to eat here and Ines encourages us to try everything, to know the products. I might try something with nuts, a cluster or a patty. Then there are months where I might want something sweet – marzipan or truffles.