Restaurant chefs and cooks come in all shapes and sizes and a wide variety of experiences.


Typically, the concept of the restaurant guides in hiring the type of chef or cook. For example, formal and upscale dining concepts usually need a chef with significant experience, while casual ones may be a good entry for those with beginner skills. 

But beyond experience, there are traits that you need to look for when looking for the right chef. This post supplements my previous entry, 5 Things to Look for When Hiring a Chef, which you can check out if you haven’t.

And now, let’s go onwards:


1. Humility in Taking Direction & Feedback


I often say that it is better to hire for attitude over skills. 

You don’t need a resistant and combative chef who makes it difficult for everyone (including you) to step into the kitchen. 

But that’s not to say that you should overlook the applicant’s skill level and accept anyone eager and passionate about the job. On the contrary, there is a reason why fundamental skills are an essential armament of someone inspiring to become a chef. 

No matter how skilled an applicant is, a new position will still require some form of orientation with regards to the kitchen layout, operation, management style, and expected outcomes. Look for an applicant who does not get irked or annoyed at being corrected but instead appreciates being guided. 

Our chefs at Anytime Chefs, both short term hire and permanent hires, are experienced in adapting quickly to varied kitchen operation scenarios, making them perfect for urgent chef staffing. In addition, we have a roster of skilled chefs with more than seven years of working experiences who understand that direction and feedback are necessary to a smooth working operation. An added advantage here is that they do not require extensive orientation but will be proactive enough to ask for clarification if they need it. 


2. Calm Confidence


Skills in performing culinary fundamentals are given. But consider carefully if the applicant exudes confidence. However, do not mistake this for cockiness and arrogance, and vice versa. 

Look for a person with a healthy level of self-confidence resulting from his knowledge and skill—someone who also displays humility and grace for improvement. 

When you hire someone confident in their skills, you will have more time to teach them the other nuances of your restaurant and menu. 

Applicants can get nervous during the staging process, where they get to show you their skill level and adaptability in your kitchen. But, it is also possible to tell if an applicant needs just a quick orientation to reduce confusion in the kitchen setup. 

In a naturally chaotic environment such as the restaurant kitchen, it doesn’t hurt to have people you can count on not to panic and mess up the operation. 


3. Business Mindset 


A chef wears more than one hat. You may be the business owner, but your business’s success and profitability have a lot to do with how good your chef is in a tactical business environment. 

In culinary school, chefs learn about food cost control and other factors affecting profit and loss. They also gain an understanding of business planning, local government regulations and legal issues. It is through experience that they can have hands-on practice of how to execute all those learnings together. 

During the interview, do not fail to ask how they can demonstrate knowledge on the financial aspects of running a restaurant kitchen and how they can help you achieve your financial goals. 

On a more personal note, please be mindful of their response that displays their integrity and ethical stands. You want a person who knows how to handle costs without reverting to shady practices. 


4. Leadership Skills


A chef to a kitchen is like a captain to a ship, who delivers the shipping vessel to its destination and ensures that various internal departments work together. 

A chef with leadership skills can help impact the business operation regarding quality and profitability. In addition, this leadership skill can help guide, inspire, motivate and discipline the rest of the kitchen team in driving towards a common business goal while promoting a safe and positive work environment. 


In Summary:

For chefs with both great attitude and seasoned work experience, call us at Anytime Chefs. We only work with qualified chefs with seven years of experience working autonomously. Let us help you take out the stress of running your business or your next event. 


That’s it for this week.
As always, Professional Chefs on Call at Anytime!

Ciao for now,

If you are interested in joining our team, read here
for more info!

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.

You have Successfully Subscribed!