The uncommon journey
Every morning, a cup of Joe to kick off the day is essential for some of us. But ever since Malaysia’s coffee scene was transformed a few years ago, coffee drinkers now prefer a cup from an experienced barista — this is where Danial Naim comes in.
This 29-year old is the business co-owner of Coffee in Common – located in all Common Ground branches – and is also the brain behind Podgy and The Banker and League of Captains. The KL-born and bred first discovered his love for coffee when he went off to Melbourne for a degree in Banking & Finance and Journalism.
“In my final year, I was working part-time at two cafes. And just from that experience, even though it was a short stint, I ended up falling in love with it,” he said.
After completing his degree, he worked for an audit firm for two years but decided to jump ship to pursue his passion. He started Podgy and The Banker but unfortunately, that didn’t last and he had to close it down.
Not used to failures, Danial said the closure of his first café was a reality check for him. “If I were to walk up to an investor right now I’ll straight up and tell him that I have had two cafés closed. I know now what not to do because I have made the mistakes. I managed to pick myself up, learned my lesson and kept going with sheer willpower.”
Now, Danial is running Coffee in Common together with his partner, Nik Michael Imran, who takes the lead on the kitchen and food while he takes care of the coffee and operations. Running a business that has four branches and 15 team members in total is certainly not an easy feat, thankfully network connectivity has enabled him to plan, shape and operate his business from head to toe.
“Being able to connect, I can just whip out my phone and check my sales in every single outlet. Which means I don’t have to be at the branch— I can easily check how much this outlet made through the Point Of Sale (POS) system. I can just log in, check my sales live and what time my employee's clock in and out,” Danial added.
Danial has big plans for the future — he wishes to establish more branches like Coffee in Common and create career pathways for his team members.