The Restaurant

The Restaurant
Formal Dining

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Getting A Job in a Restaurant - What NOT to Do

Most of the people reading this blog are mostly interested in the actual process of getting a job and many of them have questions about getting and maintaining a job in the restaurant/hospitality industry. I have given my two cents on things you should do, but there are some things that I haven't mentioned, possibly out of my own common sense filter or out of error, that you most certainly should NOT do.

Most of these things will be based on real world scenarios:
1. Don't forget a pen. Some managers won't hire anyone that asks for a pen. Can't bring a pen = unprepared (for application, work, life, etc.)
2. Don't turn your phone on. Leave it in the car, leave it at home, don't put it on vibrate, just DON'T let it be the reason you don't get a job. Recently, I was getting ready to explain to a gentleman we were only looking to hire a single cook, when his phone rang, he told me to hang on, and then took two seconds to realize it was a wrong number. That wrong number cost him a job. Never 'shush' anyone you want something from.
3. Don't expect an interview on the spot. Be ready for one however.
4. Don't ever say, "Are you ready to give me a job yet?" Use some tact when asking about the status of your application.
5. Don't call the manager or come in more than once a week. Managers are busy, they don't really have time to deal with the same old person over and over. If you haven't been hired in a few weeks time, then you had better put your application in elsewhere.
6. Don't fill your application with grammatical errors, typos, and scribbles. It just looks like you don't know what you are doing. Avoid looking silly if at all possible.
7. Similarly, fill the application out with the same pen, don't change colors. A change in color will show an employer you had to ask your mom your social security number.
8. Similarly, don't have someone else fill your application out for you. It will look like your mom had to force you to get a job.
9. Similarly, don't have someone else bring your application in for you, pick one up for you, or check on it's status for you. If you aren't responsible enough to pick one up, drop it off, and call to check on it's status, then you probably won't go through half as much effort to work for me.
10. Don't dress like you normally would - unless you always dress prepared for an interview. Wear something nice, button down, slacks, dress shoes, maybe... maybe even a tie. Again, you probably won't get an on-the-spot interview, but if you look half way professional maybe you will.
11. Don't show up unprepared (either dropping off an application or for an interview). If I ask , "What did you like about your last job," or "What are some of your strengths in the kitchen?" Don't give me the impression you were not ready for these questions. Review sample questions and formulate possible answers.
12. Don't lie. We will know or we will find out, and either way - you're screwed.
13. Don't leave any piercings in. In most restaurants the number/style/size of piercings are both a company policy and is a matter of following health codes. Don't be offended if a manager can't hire you because you have some kind of permanent piercing or something along those lines, it's generally nothing personal - just company policy.

I'm sure the list goes on and on...

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