Success in the Restaurant Industry

5 Tips for Restaurant Employers and Job Seekers

 

Employers:

 

Match the skill set and the culture.  If a restaurant’s culture is family oriented, they need a staff member who is personable and who can become part of a close-knit restaurant “family.” At a larger, high-end restaurant candidates tend to be more corporate leaders who can hold the staff below them accountable. Look at a candidate’s past experience and take note of the size and volume of the restaurants where they have worked previously.

Use social media to reach candidates.  LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram — social media is a powerful tool for reaching a large audience. A lot of times the candidates we get are not really actively seeking, so they are not your candidates who will go on Craigslist and look for jobs. Instead, they see a job description on other sites and reach out to learn more.

Find out what they care about.  “One of the top questions I always ask candidates is, what really drives them?” What is it they want that they don’t have now. In interviews, ask what they are passionate about to understand their goals and priorities.

Similarly, ask where they see themselves three or five years down the line. Can they grow within your organization? Will they be happy with the job they are in, or do they want more than what’s being offered? Not only will it help you hire the right person, it will help you keep them on.

Show your appreciation.  On that note, there are steps you can take to retain talent and reduce turnover rates. Restaurants have to show recognition in performance and give employees some incentive.  Overall, bonuses or other simple ways of acknowledging good performance can be powerful tools.

Offer internal opportunities for development.  Providing tools and training on top of a person’s actual job description can be a great way to develop staff members. Some groups offer mentoring programs in which, for example, a GM will shadow a VP of Multi Unit for a week every couple of months. The GM will observe and learn as the VP oversees multiple restaurants in the region to understand what the next phase is within the company.

 

Job Seekers:

 

Get out there!  Build your networking by attending as many industry events as you can. Get active and show your face because there’s nothing like meeting somebody face-to-face to really get to know them.

To find events near you, check out the National Restaurant Association and follow the appropriate organizations on social media. There are events at every price point (some are even free) so start making yourself accessible.

Be savvy — media savvy.  These days, you can set yourself apart as a job seeker by having an active online presence. Create a profile and follow restaurants and relevant organizations on different channels. Also, subscribe to emails and newsletters to learn more and stay up to date. That’s how you become part of a broader network of hospitality professionals and stay in the know about events and opportunities.

Do your homework & be prepared.  It’s critical to be informed about their business — volume, customer base, general information — so you are able to ask questions of them, too. If you have professional pictures of your work, bring them along in a portfolio. If you’re asked to prepare a sample menu, tailor it to what the restaurant is looking for.

Explain your experience clearly.  When a candidate’s resume shows many transitions, it can raise a red flag. But often there are good reasons for those transitions — the restaurants were all part of the same group, for example — that aren’t clear at first glance. Be able to explain yourself and back up your story.

Stay positive.  When someone speaks badly about their previous employer, that’s another red flag. Obviously each situation is different, but if not getting along with management becomes a pattern in a candidate’s experience, the person hiring may be wary of bringing him or her on. Maintaining good relationships is essential in a people-first business.

 

This article was originally written by Patrice Rice and can also be read here on her LinkedIn page.

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What Clients Say About Patrice & Associates

  • Helen Nourai THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH!!

    After being COVID laid off in 2020; I spent the next year floundering, and looking for work. I had my resume up on all the different sites, and applied to anything that was even close to a good fit. No luck, and very few calls or email responses. Until one day out of nowhere Helen contacted me. Helen was extremely personable, positive, and prepared. After speaking for some time, completing the initial introductions, and basic information. Helen already had a position in mind for me. I sent her all of my relevant documents, and she worked her magic. Just a couple days later she emailed back my beautifully reworked resume, and double checked that I was ready for her to submit to potential employers. Then things went very fast! The next day on a Tuesday I had 2 phone interviews. Then Thursday another interview with the Director. Helen kept in touch every step of the way; calling even when I had forgotten to keep her posted. Then the General Manager contacted me on a Saturday followed by the VP!! Less than a week after Helen had submitted me I had completed the interview process, and was waiting on an offer pending reference & background checks. Helen, again was in amazing communication with me. Discussing my needs from the offer to ensure that when the offer was made; it included everything I wanted. It worked out exactly like that too! In the midst of the whirlwind offer that was exactly what I wanted (something I've never experienced before), and all the different company leaders reaching out to me. Helen was right there with me too. Checking in, sharing in my excitement, and giving me all her congratulations. Again, I had never experienced a hiring process with this much of a personal touch before ever! Definitely never one that was this smooth, and fast. If the Company went a day not talking to me, Helen was on it and reaching out to push the process forward.
    13 months of the unconscionable COVID under employment; with all the stress, worry, and insecurity, doing anything and everything to scrape together as many dollars as possible, to finally land a dream position that is a perfect fit, in my ideal location, industry, and salary. It is all still so unbelievable, and I know Helen was more than a major player. She was the key! The difference maker! I cannot express my level of gratitude for her help, and perseverance. Helen is the most gifted recruiter I have ever interacted with, and should I ever be looking for work, Helen will absolutely be my first call.
    Much Gratitude,
    Ben Whetstone
    Helen Nourai THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH!!
  • Jonathan Litt is a wonderful person and great recruiter!

    Thank you for all the assistance you provided me during my job search. I appreciate the information and advice that Johnathan Litt had given, as well as the connections you have shared with me. Your expertise and help have been invaluable during this.  I’ll never forget your help and your friendship, you are one and only one, thanks again.
    Sincerely,
    Shahriar Lou Mehrdad
    Jonathan Litt is a wonderful person and great recruiter!
  • I’m still in awe of Gary Kinsinger's abilities!

    It has been such an honor to work with Patrice & Associates, but more specifically with Gary Kinsinger. I’ve worked with recruiters in the past, however none as detail oriented and diligent as Mr. Kinsinger. From the moment he initially reached out to me, all the way to my first day in my new position, Gary was and is still very present in making sure my comfort and needs are met. I truly can’t put into words how beyond grateful I am to have worked with Gary. And with no doubt in my mind would recommend his services to anyone in the market. Gary matched me with the role of my dreams in just one and a half weeks. Thank you so much, Gary Kinsinger!
    Best,
    Angela L DeFalco
    I’m still in awe of Gary Kinsinger's abilities!
  • Kathy Helfand is a true asset to Patrice & Associates

    I worked with Kathy Helfand and I was very lucky to have her help getting me placed with an amazing company. She was there with me every step of the way from the interview process to even the follow up after I started the job. She knew from the beginning what the client wanted and was able to place me where she knew I would be a great fit. I am very grateful for everything she did to help me on my way!

       

    Thank you,

    Daniel Nichols

    Kathy Helfand is a true asset to Patrice & Associates
  • Shannon Wilcox was absolutely amazing throughout the whole recruitment process!

    I have never met such a professional and dedicated recruitment person. I cannot thank him enough for his full support, for believing in me and for helping me start a new chapter of my professional career within just one week! Shannon, you are brilliant at what you do.
    Sincerely,
    George Acosta
    Shannon Wilcox was absolutely amazing throughout the whole recruitment process!