First time as executive chef

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by abuchef, Jul 25, 2013.

  1. abuchef

    abuchef

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    Hi All

    Just want your input in this thread

    After 16 years of experience in culinary industry, working in different aspects of the kitchen, I got a job for the first time as an executive chef in a 5* Hotel, that is opened 3 years ago

    The department is not that big, with an all day dining restaurant, asian speciality a la carte restaurant, room service, lobby lounge, a bar that serve a snaks/sandwiches & a small banqueting mostly for coffee breaks

    My question is, how to succeed my first years???

    I have some plans to implements & would like your input if you have the same experience or if you work with a new joining/successful executive chef

    I am thinking of, changing menus, implementing some events/promotions, reorganize the departments......

    waiting for your input

    Abu
     
  2. chefross

    chefross

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    Congratulations on your first exec job.

    16 years eh?

    You should have plenty of perspective by now then.

    5 stars, according to whom? AAA? Michelin? Zagat?

    First thing you want to do is observe.

    Go to all your satellites and simply watch. You will see what needs to be done.

    Don't make changes until you learn your customers and the area in which this place resides.

    One of the first mistakes many Chefs make is to institute change right away without studying their place.
     
  3. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    Best advice you will get.
     
  4. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    I would work every department until I felt I had  good grasp of things.
     
  5. cacioepepe

    cacioepepe

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    Congrats. ChefRoss has the right idea.  Spend a few weeks observing, taking notes to what you want to change and implement your ideas in steps.  Having a new boss is always tough especially if they have 'been doing it this way forever'.  It's hard for anyone to change their routine but with constant, gentle pressure people can easily be retrained.  

    Stick with your gut.  You've been around the block and probably know what makes good food.  Try not to second guess yourself.  
     
  6. abuchef

    abuchef

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    Thanks Chefs for your input

    Just for your info, i ve been in this area for the last 12 years, so I know what king of customers & foods we are serving in this places

    Chefross

    It's a Hotel, 5 stars which means delux

    Regards
     
  7. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    More sage advice and pay particular attention to the word work. Hands on will give you better insight into what the people dealing with the job on a daily basis are experiencing more than observing will.
     
  8. chefross

    chefross

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    My question was simply this.....WHO rates this hotel as 5 stars?
     
  9. lagom

    lagom

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    Do you have reliable section heads/sous chefs? With multible work areas you need to have eyes on location to make sure what changes you make are put into practice. Like any leadership role the sum of your team is greater than the individules by themselve, get the staff on yourside and excited about improvement and change for the better. While your accessing the depertments you should be actively recruiting the staff, esp the established cooks, sous chefs ect ect....down to the most minor(really major) utility/dish person. While your at it keep an eye on the service staff, an unresponsive service staff can make all your work for naught if you havent got them with you either. Lets not even talk about the non food service management at the hotel than may or may not have a supervisory position over you, thats an entire different bag of snakes to deal with. Good luck, welcome to ex chefdom.

    Note: Im not trying to be negitive in the least, just want you to keep eyes 360º at all times
     
  10. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    Probably tourism industry ratings or something.  It's probably full service near luxury class hotel. not in the USA.
     
  11. abuchef

    abuchef

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    Chefross

    Don't really want to change the subject, but I think you are confusing, we are talking about Hotels rating not restaurant???

    This threads is about getting inputs/supports from Chefs, not arguing about Hotels rating or my 16 years experience

    Cheers
     
  12. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    I agree.  Don't fixate on the rating.  This is a community of chefs working to make each other better, no stars or nine stars.  :)
     
  13. chefross

    chefross

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    No Sir....I am talking about hotels.  The star ratings vary according to who is rating them, and this is a legitimate question.

    If your hotel uses Egyptian 500 count linens, then you are a 5 star hotel.

    If your hotel has wood fixtures instead of plastic, then you may be a 5-star hotel.

    If your hotel has Conceirge, multiple ammentities, cloth drapes, porcelain fixtures, you may be a 5-star hotel.

    Anything less is not even considered.

    You don't tell us where you are located so we can only go by the information you provide.

    If you want advice and input, it would be best to provide more information.

    So...indeed...the question IS valid...

    If you are looking for valid advice, you have to provide more information...that's all I meant.
     
  14. cacioepepe

    cacioepepe

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  15. duckfat

    duckfat

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    If you just started your first position as a working Chef or Chef de Cuisine then I'd understand the questions and say congrats.

    We all start some place.

    I guess every ones getting so used to fluffed up titles like Executive Chef that no one even stops to think about exactly what that title means any more. 

    If you are going to tell people you work in a five star hotel then you should know exactly who rated the property five stars.

    It's a simple question no matter where the property is.

    There's nothing wrong with being a working Chef, CDC etc in a 2-3 star property. Own it and master it.

    If you want to succeed start by being honest with your self, your staff and those you are asking for help. If you start by being evasive that's not the way to succeed. If you start off like this at work your staff will pick up on you being in over your head toot sweet.

    Dave
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2013
  16. abuchef

    abuchef

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    Thank you all for the clarification

    I said 5 stars hotel because I want all the fellow chefs to understand the requirement & expectation before replay with the valuable input

    When chefross replay with AAA, michelin, ZAGAT Rating, I thought that He was talking about a restaurant because as far as I know, Michelin star & Zagat rates only restaurant so far, and I never heard of 5 michelin star, maybe am wrong, but I hope Chefross can give me an example of 5 stars Michelin hotel Or 5 stars ZAGAT hotel, If not, he miss the point

    I am a moroccan, with european qualification & right now I am working in Dubai Middle east which I believe is recognized with it's high quality of it's hotel & service standard

    That's one of the point that create the misunderstanding, because I know that most of you are from the state & the rating over there is different than europe, asia & middle east 

    So now you know the market, Dubai, customers are from all around the world, Indian, arabs, asian, american & european

    My point is, I ask for support with input, because I want to combine my ideas with yours, to create a good start that is different from what we have here

    Cheers