Disclaimer: I am not talking about the major pastry contest and for those who do not enter anything but professional pastry art/design competitions, this may be small potatoes and not worth the read; but for those novice bakers this is something to consider.
I noticed a number of members of the Dessert Professionals have never entered any contest and I just want to turn you on to a website that you might want to bookmark should you get the inkling to compete. Competing with your peers can be a tough nut to crack. No one likes to lose and any time you compete you run the risk of having "the big "L" posted on your forehead." (Someone once told me that...yep, that was their words).
First let's not look at it like that, although I know there are those of you who will no matter what I say. The one thing competitions do is force you to compare yourself to others in your industry (your peers) and that's a good thing. Once you step out into the competitors circle you really get to see how much you know and don't know. Is that bad? Heck no. If you are not on top of your game, don't you want to know that? It's like having something in your nose and walking around all day until someone tells you, "hey you have a little something right there." Then you feel foolish because you've been walking around unaware.
I can't tell you the students I've met who are still making traditional sugar cookies and brownies, and thinking chocolate mousse is going to make a comeback, never considering how they might, dare I say..."kick it up a notch" then wondering why their products are not selling. No one is ordering dessert...really?
Entering competitions can be an interesting, exciting and profitable activity. Millions of prizes are given away every year and now through the Internet, it has never been easier to share in the bounty.
Look the bottom line is you have to be in it, to win it! Yet entering competitions can be daunting. I know you don't have time and you don't want to take the time, but if you are doing nothing to get the word out about your business or skill, what do you think winning a competition will do? When the list of competitors is listed in the newspaper, even if you don't win do you think that will pull some interest in your direction?
When you have some time, and I know we never do, but perhaps, if you can take a moment to bookmark this site, do so and enter a couple of competitions from time to time. They are not all baking competitions, but our talents and skills are not always limited to baking...are they? Now, if you win I expect to hear from you...we all do!