LOL. This is cracking me up. TY for that. You ""test" them because it is better in the long run", and you "test them, just the first few weeks". OMG, how long does it take to figure things out? I test for the first shift, if things work out, then good, if not we look for an answer. I sure as sure don't want anyone testing me for any longer than that. What exactly, is at all wrong with being comfortable? Do you buy and wear uncomfortable shoes or use uncomfortable knives on purpose? I do my best work when I'm comfortable. Do you want to work with uncomfortable ovens or grill/stove tops where you get burned all the time? Who the hey wants a staff constantly on edge? Not me, I'm funny like that. I PAY my staff. That is what motivates them to do things better. Please stop kidding yourself with the idea that anyone is lucky to have anyone else. With today's market and economy everyone is lucky to have employment, not at all the other way around; employment is not lucky to have you, me or anyone else. I'm not pompous in my beliefs, I'm just realistic in the way I operate.
For me, in my experience I have found out that it's better if I give new hires a months probationary period to really get to know them and for them to really get to know us. It means both parties are making an informed decision at the end of this period. Why wouldn't I want to see what they are capable of during this period? The reason I do this is because I found that hiring people after only a day as you suggest was very hit and miss for me, some would work out and some wouldn't. This way every member of staff I've hired has been with me long term.
Also being comfortable, in my experience, starts to make people complacent, sloppy and demotivated. Surely there is a happy medium between being comfortable and being on edge? Obviously I pay my staff, but for me there has to be something more in it for myself and I like to see that in my brigade as well. I can make a lot more money doing another job as could they, so making sure that we are all achieving our personal goals and making sure that they are constantly learning is important to me. I felt very lucky to have certain chefs mentor me and invest a lot of their time in me when I was younger so I try to pass that on to the younger chefs that now work for me and hope when they are in chef positions of their own they will do the same. I would hate to have the attitude of "it's just a job" but I understand that we all have bills to pay and this certainly affects our decisions. Also here is another strategy I use that will horrify you. I always offer a really crap salary to start with so that I know they are not here solely for the money as they can easily get a higher paying job elsewhere. After a month I bump them up to the industry average.
Clearly we are very different people with very different management styles. Like Greg suggested, let's just agree to disagree on this one.