keeping it clean

Joined Jun 16, 2011
just trying to get some perspectives on this-

i work with a kitchen manager who isnt the cleanest of cooks, usually by the time i come in, hes been at work for about 5 hours, and the kitchen, storage areas, and general vicinity of the place is lookin pretty beat up and sloppy. not at all the way i had left it at closing the night before. were a busy operation, plenty of prep going on from 8 am until i get in at around 12, so i can sympathize with it to a point, but its really starting to bug me lately with the heat and now ive noticed a few flies around. i like the job,  and the night crew (myself included) generally works clean, but there always seems to be some of the days debris around. my night dishwasher always comes in to a sloppy pot sink and a bunch of disorganized dirty plates and dishes while a day dishwasher is doing some type of prep. we are not understaffed, plenty of cooks to prep. i know im not asking too much of a guy to sweep up the floor half an hour before the end of their shift, empty the trash and get some of the dishes done for my dishwasher, but when i bring these kind of things up with the guy its always "ok ok" then three days later back to square one. its really starting to make me feel like my energy would be better spent just bashing my head into the wall. i do sometimes think that im written off due to my comparative age, but what am i supposed to put baby powder in my hair and get bifocals so people will listen to things ive learned from some damn fine chefs? it makes me wonder if i want to work alongside with this kind of indifference to what i (and i imagine most of you all) consider the most important aspect of working in a kitchen. im not really in a position above the guy, but shouldnt me being right give me the upper hand to say get your sh!t together guy? ive noticed theres a few older types around here, and id like to hear your input. would you listen to a peer, 20 years younger, trying to get you to shape up? i dont think this is a subjective issue, right?? 
Joined May 5, 2010
You hit the nail on the head with the word "indifference" as that is exactly what that is.

I've worked with all kinds of people in my career from many different cultural backgrounds, as well as educational levels.

The level of professionalism from the culinary standpoint conflicts with the realities of people just working a job.

Look the world is made up of some many different kinds of people, it's hard enough getting them all on the same page, but even harder still to keep it going day after day after day.

I've been in your shoes, it's frustrating as heck. You can lead by example only so much, you can talk until you're blue in the face. As the saying goes, "you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink."

Try this...see if you can change your shift around to come in for that later shift and do this for a week or two. Teach the crew by example and see if that might work. Other than that you have only 2 options:

Deal with it.

Joined May 29, 2011
I am not sure you are a peer. Your status says line cook and you said he is the KM... If you cant stand it then you might have to look for some other place. Sounds like you have done the best you can. I know what you mean about youth, I am 38 and people constantly think I am 25-27. Is there someone that can make the morning DW do his job? Can someone make the KM clean up his chit before he leaves and you all come in?
Joined Jun 16, 2011
i was a line cook, but i recently took a position as sous chef there. ive been talking to the day time dw, so hopefully he keeps an eye open for the things that really need to get done etc. it just seems like no one else really is bothered by it as much as i am. i dont want to leave the job, its a good place that pays well, never have to worry about a check bouncing, so it looks like i have my work cut out for me. anyways i appreciate the input, im bout to head in for the week so im sure ive got my work cut out for me.
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