Edited by HungryChef - 2/3/15 at 10:50am
What do you say to an employer who is not caring for the staff properly
Say the truth--that you're looking for a proper fit of you and an employer, and give the reasons that you
didn't fit in your last one. Anyone who's managed /worked kitchens any length of time knows its pretty
common for cooks/chefs to move around a lot til they find the right match of their skills and attitude
to somewhere they want to stay a while. In this profession, it either works or it doesn't, no matter how
well the interview went, and it doesn't take long to find out which. So this one didn't work for you (hardly
surprising) doesn't mean they're all like that.
I am going to take the side of your family CuteChef.
Since you did not give us all the information, I am going to respond to what you DID say...
100 covers for lunch and then 100 for dinner is NOT a lot of covers.
Since you have been doing this for such a short amount of time, it is understandable that you feel overwhelmed.
Are you one of those people who need constant reinforcement?
If the Commis Chef is getting in your face cupcake, get back in his.
He's obviously NOT a professional if he is doing these things to you.
If he takes your knife, let him know in no uncertain terms that you will not stand for that.
If he opens your ovens and something falls, you have a legitimate beef, if not, try to let it slip by.
It's not that important. I realize coupled together these things get on your nerves but are they really worth quitting over?
And to say the least, you left without another job to go to.
If you are going to continue on in this industry, you are going to have to develop thicker skin and a better attitude.
If things aren't professional, and you are not happy with the standards, YOU start changing them.
You walked away from a job just because you felt wronged and under appreciated.
Now you're unemployed.
Tell me........when you go for your next interview, what will you tell them is the reason why you left your last place?
What do you think they will think about your answer?
Life lesson......No matter how bad things are at your job, never leave it until you have another one.
For as many restaurants as there are, the cooking world is a pretty small, tight community. You didn't do yourself any favors by walking out without notice. Word gets around and can make it hard to find your next job as chefs tend to talk to each other. But what's done is done. Next time though, you need to not let your emotions make your decision for you, and give your boss proper notice.
You never just walk out; sinking ship or not. Anytime you accept a job you should commit yourself to at least a year there. This means you need to do your homework on the place before hand, be very attentive and critical(inwardly) at your stage, access the personality of the chef the best you can, check menu's and reviews, etc.
Not only are you doing this restaurant a disservice by walking out but you are really letting yourself down by giving up so easily. No matter how shitty the situation(there will be LOTS of them, often) you should be able to persevere, prosper and make good choices.
I'm not trying to sound all negative but it sounds like you have a lot to learn about what the industry is really like and how to conduct yourself and succeed.
Thanks for replying. Yes, I see your point, I probably should of stayed and just ignored the drama. I'm new to this industry and a little naive, I do think my actions were hasty and probably should of been more wise and patient. If I ever do get another opportunity I will be more careful and ask questions about what is expected of me and find out about the place I'm about to work with. I think I made many mistakes that I should not repeat. I'm finding it hard to keep boundaries I think I burnt myself out by over putting too many hours when not needed and going out of my way to befriend everyone.
You learned a lesson. Don't do it again. You'll find work soon and always ask questions before starting a new job. Try to do a stage for one night in the kitchen before accepting the job. Ask the employees there subtle questions about the place and the managers. But know that you will work with people who you won't get along withh. Get over it and be professional!
I think that there is a lot of harshness in our industry which over time creates a rather bitter-I went-through-it-so-you-should-too-in-your-face attitude. I agree with a lot of what was said above in regards to getting a thicker skin, keep emotions in check and always ALWAYS do your homework ask a million questions in the interviews.
I am just going to take a moment to go woman to woman on this one. Us women tend to carry our emotions on our sleeve or on the surface. This industry has room for some emotion but we cannot let the emotions rule us on the job. That being said, if the other commis chef was a woman and had a drug problem then you are really shit out of luck regarding getting a common ground or even common sense coming from that person so you need to take things in hand and state your boundaries clearly........NOT NICELY. We tend to do that 'nice' thing to get everyone to like us (also we overwork ourselves to get the same result)........do not go there, confidence in yourself is very important. If the person still does not hear you, state it again and if they do it one more time.....off to the head chef you go. Be practical not complaining. Say as to why you asked or stated what you did and how it has affected the kitchen work production as a result of the other person not being a team member. That's it. Hear what the head chef has to say and then follow up if things don't get better. Brook NO argument simply by looking them in the eye, stating your boundries and the reasons why.....then say thank you. (you don't have to be a arsehole about it...lol) You do not have to come across as a bitch but then again we are not in charge of what others will think of us regardless of what we do so head up, eyes open, shoulders straight and good attitude on!
NEVER stay in a place you do not feel comfortable in and heard. Just kindly give your notice, reasons for leaving and then go out with integrity.....not with a burr up your butt about it.
On your journey in this industry, be prepared. When you are looking for jobs, think about the atmosphere, learning and growth you want for your career. Then do your homework on the best places that will give you what you are looking for. It will not always be at the places you expected. Do not be afraid of the smaller venues as well as the large ones. Always aim for the stars....the places you think are unreachable because you never know what awaits you. Look at all the reviews on that venue. Go in for a meal to see how smoothly things are run, how good the food is, and ask the staff how they like the place without stating that you are looking at a job there. This will tell you a lot without wasting all the energy trying to get the job just to find out it wasn't what you expected. When you are in the interview with the head chef, have a few important questions to ask towards the end of the interview. Ask: "Who was the best chef you ever worked for and why?" "What atmosphere do you think allowed you the most learning and growth in your career and why?" "If you could create your all time best creative chef team ever....who would be in your draft pick? Why?" "Of all the people who you have worked with or trained, who were the best and why?"
These questions have always surprised and impressed the chefs that I ended up working for. They were open and honest which told me that they would be a great leader to look up to. The other interviews I asked these type of questions they squirmed in their chair or put my questions off with barely an answer.....that told me they were not worth my time or energy.
I wish you all the best in your journey and job search!
I would never go to a boss with a statement about a coworkers addiction problem. There is just far too much individual perception and judgement involved in statements like that and they generally wind up reflecting poorly on the person making them.
I would never go to a boss to inform them that a coworker always turns up late. As a boss, I would wonder why you are focusing on the coworkers punctuality rather than your duties.
As to taking your knife, it possibly could have been a innocent mistake, but that doesn't really matter anyway. When it happened, did you explain to your coworker why that was unacceptable to you?
As to opening the oven to warm their hands, it possibly could have been a innocent mistake, but that doesn't really matter anyway. When it happened, did you explain to your coworker why that was unacceptable to you?
As to taking your service plates, it possibly could have been a innocent mistake, but that doesn't really matter anyway. When it happened, did you explain to your coworker why that was unacceptable to you?
As to using the fruit and veg slicer for raw meat, it possibly could have been a innocent mistake, but that doesn't really matter anyway. When it happened, did you explain to your coworker why that was unacceptable to you?
If the efficiency of the operation is being hampered by a coworkers continued actions or in-actions (taking your tools, opening oven to warm hands, taking service plates, improperly using tools) after you have discussed it with them as to why you find this unacceptable. Then I would ask the chef for a sit down in order to explore ways to increase productivity. Leave finger pointing and negativity out of the request for the sit down. Light can be shed on your coworkers actions during the sit down, but remember to do so in a manner that shows how it effects efficiency and that you are looking for solutions rather than to place blame.