Adele Delgado co-owns Julian Candy Basket, an old-fashioned candy shop based in Julian, California.
Julian Candy Basket, nestled in the town of Julian in the mountains of San Diego county, features nostalgic candy, treats from around the world, cane sugar soda, and beyond. This candy shop can make any customer feel like a kid at heart.
Can you tell me a little bit about what you do and offer?
We are an old-fashioned candy store specializing in nostalgic candies. We also have chocolates and imported candy with a large gummy selection. Plus, we have a vast assortment of sodas in glass bottles (cane sugar only). We round out the store with tins, lunchboxes, mugs, and plush. We also ship and do baskets on request.
What made you decide to open Julian Candy Basket?
My daughter loved the store and was hired in high school as part of a grant. Later on, I was hired. When the store was for sale three years later in 2005, my husband and I decided to buy it. We work together as a team.
What’s your favorite part of running your own business?
There is a certain amount of flexibility with owning the store. We very much enjoy meeting our customers and have even seen some of them grow up. I also love when customers exclaim they have been coming here since they were a child and that this is their favorite store!
Tell me about the biggest obstacle you had to overcome in your business.
We have faced a lot of challenges: Economic changes, COVID, and rising prices. We have weathered it all, but the biggest challenge was in the beginning with learning how to run a business and my own sense of inadequacy.
How does Patriot’s Full Service Payroll help you?
One thing I do not enjoy is bookwork. There is a lot of it, and it is not my forte. My sister-in-law used to help me, but with her passing, I was struggling. Patriot is so easy to use, I love it! It has taken the worry off my head. With Full Service Payroll, I don’t have to navigate filing quarterly returns. I used to think with only two employees I should be able to handle it. The reality is it wasn’t worth the stress. I’m so happy to have the service and have wonderful and helpful assistance if I ever have a question.
When it comes to your business, what are you most proud of?
Customer service! We get the nicest compliments on being friendly and helpful. I am also proud of the variety of products we have.
What words of advice do you have for people hoping to start their own business?
1. Do your research on what it entails. It’s always more work than you think.
2. You tend to take it home with you, so provide yourself some breaks to refresh.
3. Treat your employees as a team—they will make or break you.
4. Never forget about customer service. Value the customer and be knowledgeable about your product.
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