Recipe For Success
“When you decide to be an entrepreneur, you suddenly realize that you are responsible for your living and that you cannot blame anyone for your missteps or success” said Cora as she recently reflected on her life.
Cora Tsouflidou is one of four kids, she has one brother and two sisters and grew up in a small village in the Gaspe peninsula, Quebec.
In 1960, she enrolled at Montreal's Cardinal Leger Institute. Her dream was to be a teacher and she was determined to make this dream a reality. However, she found out she was pregnant, got married and had three children and her life lessons began. “Children teach you to be a mother and once you learn that lesson and become mother hen, you can do anything you set your mind to,” shares Cora.
After ten years of marriage, Cora decided to leave her marriage and explore her autonomy. After her divorce, she became a single mother and the sole provider for three young children. This was what led to Cora's purchase of a tiny neighborhood canteen in May 1987. Cora decided to turn the canteen into a restaurant that served innovative breakfasts, specializing in omelettes and crepes.
When Cora started Chez Cora and Cora’s Breakfast & Lunch restaurants, she soon realized that cooking healed her regret of not becoming a teacher and a writer. She discovered that she “could write” with food and that plating meals, allows her creativity to flourish. Van Gogh, used paint. Cora uses food.
When Cora serves someone, it pleases her. Presenting a good plate is how Cora shows her love to her customer and their love of her meals, is what makes Cora feel recognized and happy.
Cora is a woman who has learned to surrender to life and let things happen. She is a woman who works hard and believes that everything will come at its own time. This why, she would not change anything about her journey.
After 22 years of business, Cora believes every lesson was necessary. “It was financially challenging when I started my business but now I am able to enjoy the lesson that suffering financially taught me” says Cora.
She believes that we suffer, sometimes, because we want life to be a certain way instead of letting life occur. Cora's advice to business women is “Stop complicating your life. You don't always have to be intelligent, you just have to let you be you. Come back to your feminine quality. Let yourself be loving, let yourself teach and learn. Just let yourself be.”
After 22 years of planning, Cora is determined not to plan. She wants her heart, not her ego, to drive. She is determined not to worry anymore because she has learned that everything will turn out okay whether she worries or not.
The most impressive thing about Cora is her definition of success. Success to Cora, is the ability to buy all the books she wants.