Whether you are a person seeking the services of a private chef, or you’re a chef yourself who’s in need of the assistance of your fellow culinary expert, it’s important that you hire the right person for the job. This way, you can have peace of mind knowing that everything will be smooth sailing. To determine if you’re hiring the right person, you should conduct a working interview. By doing this, you’ll know more about him or her, including their qualifications, skills, and if you like their meals!
Here are some interview tips to help you get started.
- Start with the basics. The first thing you need to do is determine if they have sufficient cooking skills. Ask where they learned to cook. Review their work history to ensure that they are truly qualified for the position they want to fill. Ask if they have any original recipes since this may show their creative side. Great chefs are not afraid to experiment and create new dishes. Discuss their cooking philosophies and thought process in creating dishes so you’ll understand how they operate as a chef.
- See if they have excellent management and organizational skills. No matter how big or small your kitchen is, you definitely want to make sure that it is being handled and managed properly. As such, when hiring a chef, discuss their experience with managing a kitchen such as creating menus, managing the budget and food costs, purchasing ingredients, and other related tasks. Also, ask how they will ensure that your kitchen will operate smoothly and problem-free.
- Ask them for suggestions. If you’re an employer looking to hire a private chef, give them an idea of what your family’s dietary requirements are. Or if you’re a chef who’s seeking to hire another chef, ask them what they think of your menu. Either way, take them on a tour of your kitchen and ask them for suggestions on how they would improve or change things. This will give you an idea of if they are a go-getter and have initiative.
- Learn more about them. Once you are familiar with their skills and capabilities, you may determine what makes them tick as a person. Discuss personal issues. Find out why they are leaving their current job (in case they are currently employed) to work for you. Ask them about their dreams and aspirations as a chef, as well as the challenges they have faced in the past. This will help you identify patterns that might suggest their unwillingness to do mundane tasks, or other red flags that might indicate that they are not suited for the job.
- Ask for a cooking demo. Anyone can say that they can cook, but only a few people really know how. As such, end the interview by asking them to prepare a dish or two that would complement your tastes or meet your dietary requirements.
A working interview is always a good idea when hiring a Private Chef. You can see how they interact with you, your family and how they handle grocery shopping, kitchen organization, cooking and clean-up. Keep in mind a chef may be nervous on their first “cooking interview” so we suggest trying 2 or 3 days before making your final decision.