Right now things are reopening, closing and reopening again and a whole lot of you are going to be going on interviews. This should help….
People tend to view interviews as a one sided, they’re judging you type of situation. No no no folks, this is simply not the case. A few questions now can save you world of headache later and help you avoid any potential misunderstandings.
1. Why is the position open?
Right off the bat, this tells me a lot…Did the last guy walk? Did he get fired? If the job is so awesome, why is the position open?
2. How long has this place been around?
Is it brand new or has it been around for a while? It’s not a deal breaker but I’d also like to know before hand if the various glitches in the system are still being worked out or if it’s a neighborhood institution with the menu set in stone.
3. How are you going to handle it if I can’t come in on my day off?
Most of the time I’ll say yes but from time to time, I’m going to be tripping on mushrooms eating cereal all day. Are you going to respect the fact that I have a life outside of the Kitchen or are you going to throw a shit fit?
4. Do you use Sysco?
Hard limits. Seriously, if they use Sysco, it means they use a lot of their products because of the sky high minimums for delivery and I’m not going down that road for a variety of reasons
5. Have you ever fired someone? Have you ever been fired?
It’s a matter of empathy. If you’ve never been fired and put in that situation, you’re a lot more likely to pull the trigger. Oh, and for the record I’ve only fired three people…..
6. How long have you worked here?
Have you been around long enough enough to know the lay of the land? Did you work your way up? Why do you work here?
7. What’s the worst thing about this place?
No place is perfect and I want to know right upfront what I’m getting into. Don’t try to bullshit me with some smoke and mirrors, I can smell it from a mile away. I can put up with a lot but don’t lie to me and treat me like I’m stupid.
8.What are the owners like?
Owners make or break a place and I’d much rather work at a dive bar with cool people who respect me than fine dining for a douche. This is also why I tend to work at smaller places since I like being on a first name basis with the person who is signing my check.
9. Have paychecks ever bounced?
I hate that I have to ask this but sadly it’s needed. It’s also not a deal breaker as long as the powers that be are honest with me and it doesn’t happen on a regular basis. If it does, it’s a major red flag.
10. How do you handle guests disrespecting staff?
This is a big one. Are they going to have your back or are they going to throw you under the bus?
When it’s all said and done
No place is perfect, it’s impossible with the way the industry is set up. Restaurants are strange places run by people who are often just as unorthodox. The key is finding a place that you can thrive in while being treated with some sense of dignity and respect….. Best of luck, cook like you fuck
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