Today we’d like to introduce you to Sharla Frazier.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Being born and raised in St. Louis, MO, I had no family or real friends when I decided to up and move to Atlanta, GA back in December 2008, with nothing but my car and a few weeks left of unemployment. I’ve always known that, I wanted more than an “average” life and I’ve never been afraid of taking risk. So, when the economy was hit hard in 2008 and St. Louis, MO was at an ultimate low of finding decent paying jobs, it took me all of two months to decide and plan to move to Atlanta, GA, with desires of reaching my dreams of either becoming a business owner or finding my way into the entertainment industry. My first month in Georgia, I spent living in my car which I parked at the parking garage next to McDonalds at Grady Hospital in downtown Atlanta. Let’s just say I learned some important life skills and experienced some very interesting people. I enrolled in Atlanta Job Corps as they provided shelter, weekly allowance and assisted with finding students a job after graduation. After hearing of my living situation they rushed my entry into the school and 4 months later, I was done with my 8-month course for certification and graduated June 2009. I lived in Atlanta a couple years and had to move back home due to family situations but I always knew I’d be back. When I moved back to Georgia in 2014, I was a bit more stable and even more hungry to fulfill my dreams.
First business was started in 2016, after meeting two very inspired and conscious women at my previous 9-5 job, who also agreed that life had to hold more than a “paycheck-to-paycheck” routine for us. TImelessXcapades Event Planning was born and we took off great with a few parties under our belt. Unfortunately, my partners had to leave the business due to personal life situations that I understood, though left me a little discouraged. I still promoted here and there, though ultimately, it had to sit out a while. I’ve always had a passion for cooking that my mother instilled in me, so when co-workers started to inquire about how I made certain dishes that I brought in for company potluck or even that they would pay me to make a dish – it definitely sprung a lightbulb. There were many dishes that they liked but I noticed that everyone went crazy for my baked potatoes or potato casseroles. For me, it was a quick dinner that I could throw together as potatoes are just easy. Though I realized, there was market for it in Atlanta, GA with not much competition. I ran with it.
By the end of February 2017, I launched Missez Tatoe Head, serving Loaded Baked Potatoes and Potato Casseroles and by the end of March, I had made $600 profit. Not bad for the first month of business. Business was going well for a while until I encountered my own misfortune in life, including my home being burglarized and my car stolen right after I left my 9-5 job in hopes to make my business my main source of income. Again, the company had to sit out for a while I got my life back on track. Though, when you are a good person with a good heart and good intentions, things always works out in your favor even when people try to tear down your spirit. My bestfriend inspired me to start my document formatting business, as I’ve always been good at graphic design and creating everything from resumes, to flyers, to menus. While promoting for yet another business, it was my old employees who questioned why I wasn’t still investing my time into my lunch and catering business that motivated me to pick it back up. Missez Tatoe Head had grown solely on word-of-mouth promotion so much that as soon as I re-launched the business, I had 4 events back to back to cater. The welcome back was emotional and overwhelming for me. I knew then that my lunch and catering was something I needed to stick with and so I fully invested everything I had in my savings into the business. Today, the business is pretty consistent in at least one event every month and still catering lunch once a month at my 9-5 job.
Combined with my event planning business, I’ve just had an over showering of support and love to plan and cater events all over Atlanta and surrounding counties/cities. The business is still in it’s growing stages, though quickly becoming a hot commodity around the city and I am humbly grateful for all the support shown. The plan is to have a food truck by the end of 2018 and everything seems to be working just fine towards that goal. Steve Harvey and Oprah both said that it takes a good three times to fail at your business/career goals, before your perception changes to persevere no matter what happens and you take off to the next level. With that being said, watch out Atlanta – Missez Tatoe Head will be taking over the lunch and catering market soon and is definitely here to stay.
Has it been a smooth road?
As stated before, I was robbed. By blood relatives, at that. Opened my home to a few of my younger cousins from St. Louis that wanted to pursue their rapping careers and as they were here they seen how my business was growing, even in early stages. So much so, they thought I “had it”… and I woke up one morning to a very quiet house. Everyone gone, flat screen TV’s gone, radio’s gone, jewelry gone and my new truck that I had just put down payment on 3 weeks prior – gone. That set me back quite a bit. Also, this happened right after I gave up my 9-5 job, so having no income plus having to deal with the theft of my things… not to mention the emotional distraught that derived from it… made it very hard to even pay bills, nevertheless keep up with inventory to be able to produce more food entrees for customers. Of course the typical, nay-sayers and doubters are somewhat of a struggle. Though, I believe everyone deals with that. It’s been some hurtful and hard moments encountered to really get my business where it is now so I can only imagine what may happen to get it where I want to be. But this for sure… I am ready.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Missez Tatoe Head story. Tell us more about the business.
I have a few businesses actually and I am very proud of that. The fact that I had the courage to finally say, “This is what I’m good at, so I will make a career out of this”, has given me the most sense of accomplishment. Simply believing in myself. Though Missez Tatoe Head is the top business I have under my belt. We specialize in POTATOES! Yummy delicious loaded potatoes with steak, chicken and even shrimp. We serve a veggie option of loaded potato and a loaded sweet potato that will blow you away. Also, my potato casseroles are completely amazing – the most requested one being the Buffalo Chicken Potato Casserole. There isn’t much competition in Atlanta for restaurants, food trucks or catering business that solely specializes in potatoes. The market, for now, is mine for the taking!
How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
By the end of this year, I want a food truck. The food truck, once stabilized and steady with income and greater customer base, will eventually lead way to the restaurant. The goal? To have a Missez Tatoe Head restaurant in Atlanta, St. Louis, New York, Houston, Chicago and Detroit. Eventually, Missez Tatoe Head will be a franchise.
- Loaded Potatoes range from $5 – $11.
- Casseroles are $5 – $8.50
- Drinks and Cheesy Garlic Bread are $2 or less.
- Phone: 314-675-0715
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Facebook: fb.me/mrztatoehead