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Hi. I'm a pastry chef in Los Angeles. My first time posting here... I'm aware there's a separate forum for pastry chefs, but I wanted to reach as many members as possible :-)

I work in a small, upscale American bistro. Business has been slow in the past few months due to the economy, as many of you can relate, I'm sure... Well, overall we're still doing okay (40-50 covers on a Friday night), but people just aren't spending the extra bucks when it comes to desserts. Because I am one of the higher-paged hourly employees, and my labor cost now far exceeds what I bring in through dessert sales, he decided to cut back my hours. Instead of five shifts a week, I now work four.

There's been this idea my boss and I have been throwing around a while, and since I'm making less money now, this seems to be a good option. A bonus program of sorts, whereby he would pay me based on my performance (=sales of dessert items), in addition to the hourly wage. I reminded him of it again, and he said he would be willing to implement it, but I would have to come up with two "structures" or models based on which he will make a decision.

Has anyone ever been given an option like this, and if so, what has worked for you and your boss? Or, if you're the boss, what is the most mutually beneficial situation?

The first idea I have is that he would pay me a fixed amount whenever I reach a sales quota of 100 items. The desserts range in price from 8 to 12 dollars. What would be a reasonable amount to ask? $100? $150? or more? My second idea is that at the end of each month, dessert sales would be tallied up, and I would receive a certain percentage. Again, I'm not sure how much I should ask for. 10%? 15?

Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much for taking the time to read my post.