Moved this out of the pro forums because well, they are for pros only to post (please respect that everyone).
At the height of my career in the 90's I was at 32K a year with health benefits for a large size restaurant. Back in that day if you were making 50K a year as a chef that was a great salary but if you break it down by the hours you put in here is the reality of the situation:
I think this is a conservative estimate check my math and see if I am correct.
As a chef you will probably:
work 6 days a week
12 hours a day
which is 72 hours a week
You work around 3,744 hours a year.
You make $50,000 a year
which means your only making around $13.35 an hour. If your not getting any health benefits then your making even less.
Sadly you can go to McDonalds and make pretty close to that. *Current Illinois minimum wage is $8.25.
I think the tough question anyone needs to ask themselves going into cooking is 13.00 an hour to be a chef worth all the time I will lose with my family?
I hear you loud and clear on that one.....I have taken note of too many divorced chefs in my career. Or those on the brink.....Hind site is a great thing