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Monday, 4 July 2011

Finding staff

It's a lot of chefs nightmare- a member of your team hands in his notice. This is especially true in a small team like mine, where we all play a part in every section and cover each other on days off etc. Being a small team is fine, and works well when everyone plays their part and knows every corner of the kitchen and how to run each section. I guess on that respect I have been lucky since before Christmas when I took on a young Polish lad to fill my last vacancy, as we have had a reasonably settled group since then. Over the last month, all that has changed, and I have had virtually everyone hand their notice in now, including the aforementioned Polish boy, who is returning to Poland as his mother is ill. Another person is hoping to leave as she has has a small child to look after and needs full time hours, but in straight shifts (which I unfortunately can't offer her at present).
There is also a young man who I had had some hope for, he was never the brightest star of the culinary world but he kept going, had been learning and picking things up, and was making good progress until he recently passed his driving test and bought himself a new car. For reasons known eonly unto himself, he felt it was best to get himself finance on a 2009 plate car which he now realised he can't afford. Given the options of changing the car for a bit of an older model and staying here, learning his trade or going to an hourly paid "dead end job" (his words), he has chosen the latter.
To my mind that is a big shame, as there are jobs with prospects ahead of him if he could just open his eyes and see that. I remember being his age and being told similar things I guess, but I know I never overstretched myself so badly that I had to give up a career I (and he) loved.
Without sounding like an old fart, harping on about the 'youth of today', I do feel that it shows how these days young people do have different priorities from the past, no longer is there the desire to learn a trade and use it to create whatever you can in the future, it is very much about the now, and wanting everything without putting the hard work in. I am of the opinion that if you work for something, you appreciate it more when you get it, if something is just handed to you, you never fully respect it or at the very least take it for granted that it can always be replaced, as it has cost you nothing financially or by means of effort.
All of this also means I am now looking for an entire kitchen brigade, apart from my sous chef, who starts next week!
In all seriousness, if anyone is looking for a job in the south wales area, or knows someone else who may be, please get in touch at or on my Twitter- @chefbennett01.
Thanks for reading my moaning post!

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Location:Nr abergavenny


  1. Happened to me same time last year, new team is better ... good luck !

  2. cheers mat, and thanks for reading!