Introvert Line Cook

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by hiroyoshi10, Feb 28, 2013.

  1. hiroyoshi10

    hiroyoshi10

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    Line Cook
    Hey guys,

       I've been reading the forum for a while but I just signed up because I had a question. I recently got a job as a line cook and this is my 2nd week working. I've been nervous about it but I ran sauté by myself today because we were a person short. Long story short, I was wondering if you guys have any advice for a newbie. I'm an introvert and I'm basically the youngest line cook. I'm finding it hard to relate to everyone on the line because they are basically older and I just don't feel like I fit in. How do you guys normally fit in as being the newest one there? I've never had this problem before of not fitting in, but that's also because I was usually at jobs where everyone was around the same age. Any advice would be great! Thanks :)
     
  2. michaelga

    michaelga

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    ... be honest
     
  3. thetincook

    thetincook

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    Seriously, don't sweat it. I've been you.

    Nobody likes the frigging new guy. The trick is not to internalize it and ruminate over it. Then focus on your work, bust some ass. Once you put in enough time and show your worth, you should be set.

    And hang out here, so you can get some positive atmosphere
     
  4. someday

    someday

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    Well, one of the best things you can do when working in a new kitchen is to keep your mouth shut. Obviously, ask questions when needed, but I've found it's best to be cool, calm, willing to do whatever, and don't talk to much about your past experiences, etc. 

    I'm not saying you have to be a mute or anything, but you know, talk softly and carry a big stick kind of thing. 

    Also, work really really hard. Do the dirty jobs, work clean, work fast, work harder than those guys and you will earn their respect. Until then you are the FNG and have to prove yourself. 

    Nothing wrong with being quiet...some of the best cooks I've known have been quiet. The loud, brash ones are generally more likely to lose their shit and not be able to back up all their talk. Stay humble, focus on the food. 
     
    hellobeju likes this.
  5. candymachine7

    candymachine7

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    New people don't usually fit right in. People that talk a lot might think they fit in but they are usually just being annoying, haha. Give it some time, I'm going through the same thing, i'm young and my co workers are much older, and there is also a language barrier in my case. After about six months you will of had the time to get to know people a little better and be more comfortable with them. When I start a new job I focus on myself and what I need to get done, and then over time everything works out naturally.
     
  6. rat

    rat

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    Just keep your head down and work your ass off. Cooke will recignize you have the talent or you dont. I wouldnt sweat it if you feel confident.
     
  7. 10buttonfriend

    10buttonfriend

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    put yourself out there! get involved in a conversation, doesnt matter the topic just jump in you dont know how well you may relate to them unless you try to get to know them... with that being said your there to work with them and learn from the. the friendships will come in time.... Dont be afraid to stand out a little bit, you sound a little concerned about " fitting in"...  Focus on your work!
     
  8. kaazaah

    kaazaah

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    Hello everyone, just registered here, first post ever..

    I'm actually quite relieved that I'm not the only experiencing this.. 

    Read some of the replies on your thread here and they're right, prove your worth they'll eventually soften up a bit..

    Once they see you're a team player, and a hard worker you'll start to earn respect..

    They haven't canned you, so you've gotta be doin somethin right..

    Best of luck!
     
  9. dreb

    dreb

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    Line Cook
    Speaking as a young cook , who is going through the same thing being the " NEW GUY" Is you will never walk in with people being buddy, buddy wth you so just stay focused and i promise you as soon as you show that u are great and can hold your own u will be fine.

    People talk, u decide if you listen.
     
  10. pollopicu

    pollopicu

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    I think the most important thing is to be yourself and not try too hard. If you don't think a joke is funny don't laugh. Try not to be anyone's puppy dog. Keep your head to your work, and do that until you gain trust and respect.
     
  11. sparkie

    sparkie

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    I especially agree with pollopicu here, nothing against anyone else, but those are wise words. The FinGY stuff will go away after you have proven yourself using the advise given by the others.
    As an introvert myself, who struggles with social anxiety and making personal connections with people, I'd like to share some things that have helped me connect with people. I sometimes take notes at home about something a co- worker mentioned about their personal life. Maybe their sister had a baby, or son joined the army, or their soft ball team made the playoffs. I will jot it down, and next week before work, I can check my notes and remind myself to say hey Joe, how is your nephew/ sister/ son/ team doing? Another thing that has always gotten me by at faking being a normal social being is sports knowledge. I've had a job where I was the only native American in the kitchen, so sports talk was soccer or nothing. I used my ESPN Mobile App to give me updates for what was happening on the soccer world and the teams that they were into. It was just enough info to fake it and build common ground so that a relationship could bud.
     
    hellobeju likes this.
  12. solsen1985

    solsen1985

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    If they go out drinking and your of age go hang out. It only takes a couple of drunken nights to get to know everyone really well. After that, piece of cake.
     
     
  13. pirate-chef

    pirate-chef

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    agreed with solsen. some of my best contacts in the industry and eventual jobs came of this. 
     
  14. linecook854

    linecook854

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    The FNG is a title that's hard to shake in any kitchen but I would say it depends mostly on the type of people in your kitchen. Some kitchens have good eggs who are inviting and helpful (usually in more upscale restaurants) and some kitchens have typical angry and competitive (and not in the good way that makes everyone better!) line cooks who are not thinking team-first or even food-first (these are usually casual restaurants in my experience). Being the FNG in the latter type of kitchen is a title you're going to carry until you are 100% perfect (ain't gonna happen) or until someone new is hired who will assume this title. Even if you are way more experienced or talented than those around you, you are going to do things slightly different than the "house" way so it's gonna piss people off to some extent. Change of routine is one thing I've learned that most line cooks despise!
     
  15. scantron22

    scantron22

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    Show up. Work hard. Learn. Keep your mouth shut. It might not seem like it, but the people that are worth knowing will notice
     
    chef bilby likes this.
  16. chef bilby

    chef bilby

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    Best advice there , be honest and enjoy yourself , work hard , head down bum up , just like the first day at school - it'll get better and the mateship earned will last a lifetime