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Experiences working for Restaurant Associates / Compass Group

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Hello everyone.

 

I'm new here to the forums. I found the website because I was searching for industry opinions about Compass Group and/or Restaurant Associates. I know there are a couple other forums that touched on this but they are very old and not much replies, so I thought I'd start a new one.

 

I just recently started working at a corporate private dining in NYC for a big banking firm under Restaurant Associates. I'm the lead line cook. So basically right under the Exec Chef and the Sous Chef.

 

For me this has been an amazing change since I've been dedicating so many years working in some of NYC's finest kitchens, but also with no benefits, bad schedules, crap pay, little development room, uncertainty, etc. So now this job is great. I am making $5 more an hour than I ever made in private restaurant kitchens, I'll get full benefits and have weekends off and basically office hours.

 

So for me this look like it'll be my long term job for many years to come. I do have a few questions:

 

1- How often can pay raises happen?

 

2- Is there good potential to be promoted, or given better positions even in other areas of the company?

 

3- I was very interested by the fact that Compass Group is global and the potential to transfer somewhere else. I would love for the chance to move to the west coast or even go work in Europe in the future. Has anyone transfered within Compass Group companies? and how easy was the process?

 

Thanks for any replies.

post #2 of 3

I worked for Chartwells Dining Services for a year. It's the higher education food service division of Compass Group. My experience was mixed. I liked the company, but I was stuck in a bad region. I was a travelling "fix it" GM for a new District Manager who was trying to clean up a poorly run district. I got ran ragged but learned a lot. The most important thing that I learned is that it is more important to work in a well run individual operation than a well run company. A bad manager in a great company makes it miserable for everyone underneath him/her. If you are in a kitchen where you feel appreciated, are proud of your food, and you feel like you are learning something, then you are in a good spot. If you want to move up fast though, you'll have to be prepared to transfer to lower functioning kitchens. That's where the turnover is, and as a result, the opportunity. If you are open to moving around, it's fairly easy to move up quick in a company that big.

 

Each company within Compass has a job board where all the jobs for that company are posted. By now, there may even be one large one for all the companies. It's been many years since I was there so I don't know. Keep checking the job boards and applying for positions. If you do a good job where you are, there will be opportunities to move up. Don't hide your ambition from your bosses. Let them know you want to move up and ask them to help you. In a company like that, there is always opportunity for someone willing to move and willing to bust their ass.

Brandon O'Dell

 

Friend That Cooks Home Chef Service

www.friendthatcooks.com

O'Dell Restaurant Consulting

www.bodellconsulting.com

 

Reply

Brandon O'Dell

 

Friend That Cooks Home Chef Service

www.friendthatcooks.com

O'Dell Restaurant Consulting

www.bodellconsulting.com

 

Reply
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the reply. Yeah I have read horror stories about bad relationships between managers and chefs or managers and cook which makes it miserable for everyone. But I am very happy with the set up I have now. The chef has been in the same place for 7 years so everything is very stable and the operations managers gets along great with everyone.

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