How best to recruit a Chef/Restaurateur/Entrepreneur

Joined Feb 19, 2010
As investors/businessmen with little specialist knowledge in this field, we are going thought the process of purchasing a 'perfectly' located, but rundown beach restaurant/bar/venue in the Cape Verde islands – one of the fastest growing tourist destinations in the world. We are looking for a Chef/Restaurateur/Entrepreneur to feed into the business plan and take the reins of company operations, on either a profit share or equity basis. We need him/her quick. Money is  tight, where do you suggest we advertise for the role and what recruitment agencies would you advise? Your advice being very much appreciated.
Joined Oct 10, 2005
Head hunters, but they don't come cheap.

The right person you want will want either a piece of the action, or a lump-sum to set up the place and get it on it's feet for the first 3 mths. 

Either that or you have a close partner that you trust and have worked with in similiar situations before.  This is quite common the longer you work in this biz.

I have to tell you though,  there are two very likely posibilities in, the scenerio in which you describe that will come about:.

The first is that an independant  Chef/restauranteur will come up with the cash, buy the place, and raise the funds him/herself to get the place going.

The second is that a large corp. will buy the place and use it's deep pockets to entice the right person to set up and run the place.

Joined Aug 7, 2008
Go ahead and label me confused. You registered as a professional Chef but you have no idea where to find a Chef? Since you are in essence advertising here already you may want to consider contacting the appropriate folks right here at CT and paying for an ad.
Just a thought. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/wink.gif
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Joined Oct 10, 2005
We're talking in riddles, and the guy needs a Chef.....

Allow me to riddle further;

"Chance favours the prepared mind"

You've got the location and the place, but how well are you prepared?  You need a Knight and a Bishop--A Chef and a Maitre D.  And you know these are key people to get in the game as soon as the document is signed.

Forget about food for a minute, let's say that you've found a market for Widgets in Outer Mongolia.  You've located suitable factory space for the widgets, but you need a Production Mngr. and a Sales Exec to get the whole thing started.  Your reputation rests partly on a quality product (production mngr) but also on a fair market price and good sales distribution and marketing.  You need these two key employees before any shovel hits the dirt.  No matter how good the Production mngr is and how well the widgets are made, if the widgets don't sell, he's costing you money every second he's there.  Similiarlily if the Sales exec. doesn't set a fair price or overloads the production, it's going to cost you money or reputation.

You need your key people within arm's reach before you're ready to sign whatever documents that nail you down.  If you don't have these people you will suffer.  There are a zillion angles to work out: Yes, the kitchen, it's infrastructure, permits, contractors and their work, but also suppliers, employees, etc.  F.O.H. needs his suppliers and employees, and if you can't get a liquor license and whatever that entails, you might as well walk away from the whole deal.

Be prepared.  Network with Chefs and Maitre D's--who's unhappy with their current employers, who wants to work "sweat equity" for a slice of the pie, who can bring flocks of followers, etc.
Joined May 29, 2006
Since you have no experience in this venture. I ask you, how do you know who and what to hire? Do you know what questions to ask the candidates at an interview?. Are you prepared to give him or her a practical cooking test?  I would. You are trying to do this quick and under durest. You are bound to make errors.I would offer a % as in business today CEO comp is based on performance as his or hers should be. You are making a huge investment, the person you hire can get another job , but you cant buy another restaurant as fast you may be broke.  BE CAREFUL and good luck in your venture. Also you will pay a Headhunter a fortune for the Same guy that will answer your add if put in THE NY TIMES.
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