Brewing Success: How First Class Accounts Steamed Up Business for Operation Underground

February 13, 2024

small business in australia success story cover photo operation underground cafe

In the coastal tranquillity of Hervey Bay, Matt Suckling’s café, Operation Underground, stands as a favourite local spot, but the journey to its creation was filled with twists and turns. 

Originally from the Gold Coast, Matt moved to Hervey Bay seven years ago to embark on a new business venture. It was a significant shift, trading bustling city life for the calm of the bay, but one that eventually led him to his true passion – coffee.

Behind the scenes, Matt’s business journey has been supported by a lasting partnership with First Class Accounts – Fraser Coast, a relationship that has spanned seven years and two separate businesses. 

The Journey to Operation Underground

Matt’s journey into the café industry was fuelled by a singular passion: coffee. This love isn’t just about the beverage itself but about the unique experiences and connections it fosters. “I really do love making coffee…sharing those flavours with people,” Matt explains, highlighting the joy he finds in his daily work.

His venture, Operation Underground, was born out of this passion, aiming to offer more than just a good cup of joe but an inviting community space for all. “There’s definitely some mornings where I should be paid a psychologist wage,” he jokes. 

Navigating Uncertain Times  

However, embarking on this journey wasn’t without its challenges. Opening and operating a café amidst the unpredictable waves of lockdowns and restrictions presented a steep learning curve. 

Yet, Matt navigated these hurdles with resilience and adaptability, demonstrating the tenacity required to sustain a small business during such volatile times. “Just making it through that, I was like, all right, we’re cruising now,” he reflects on overcoming the initial pandemic challenges, showcasing his perseverance.

A Part of the Local Community 

Above all, the heart of Operation Underground lies in its role as a community hub. Matt’s dedication to creating a warm, welcoming space has resonated deeply with customers, transforming the café into a beloved local fixture. 

matt suckling, owner of operation underground cafe a small business in australia as he prepares coffee
Matt Suckling, owner of Operation Underground Cafe (Image: Instagram

The continuous flow of positive Google reviews serves as a testament to the café’s impact, offering “constant reminders of just the impact we’re having,” as Matt puts it. This customer feedback underscores the importance of the café not just as a place to grab a coffee, but as a significant part of the community’s daily life.

The Impact of Professional Bookkeeping on a Local Business

The introduction to Robyn from First Class Accounts came at a time when the pressure of managing the café’s finances was almost too much to bear. “I’m going to say it was like three weeks into the start of my very first business… I just found everything freaking super overwhelming,” Matt recalls. 

“I burst into tears because it was just so stressful,” he admits, reflecting on their first meeting where Robyn reassured him she could manage all his accounting and bookkeeping needs.

This collaboration marked a significant turning point for Matt. “She was definitely a massive saviour,” he asserts, emphasising the relief he felt by offloading financial tasks to someone capable and trustworthy. 

The result was not just a better-managed café but a lighter personal load. “Just the fact that I could eliminate that from my responsibilities and totally hand it across to someone I could trust just took such a weight off my shoulders,” Matt explains.

“Just the fact that I could eliminate that (bookkeeping) from my responsibilities and totally hand it across to someone I could trust just took such a weight off my shoulders.”

Thanks to this partnership, Matt can now pour his energy into his passion – making coffee and building community connections at Operation Underground. 

The ongoing support from Robyn and the First Class Accounts team continues to be invaluable, offering Matt not just financial services but peace of mind, allowing him to focus on what he loves most about his business.

Matt’s Personal Growth and Business Evolution

Running Operation Underground has been a journey of growth and discovery for Matt. 

Reflecting on his evolution, Matt shares, “It definitely makes you a stronger person.” He’s learned to prioritize what truly matters, noting, “It’s made me learn just not to worry about all of the small stuff.” 

This mindset shift has been crucial in navigating the ups and downs of business ownership.

Matt’s journey through the hospitality scene, especially amidst challenging times like lockdowns, has been a testament to his resilience. He notes, “I guess it’s been a massive learning curve.” 

The experience has not only shaped his business strategies but also his personal outlook, fostering significant personal growth alongside the development of Operation Underground.

Most importantly, Matt emphasizes the joy and satisfaction he finds in his work, underscoring the importance of passion in business. “I just want to have fun with this business,” he says, expressing his commitment to maintaining a positive environment for both himself and his customers. 

Inspired by Matt’s story? Consider the benefits of professional bookkeeping for your business. Find a First Class Accounts bookkeeper near you today.

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