The next stage was a ‘trade test’ where the candidates were given a £10 budget and asked to prepare a menu. At this point one of the candidates dropped out, leaving just two. On the day of the test, the school’s preferred choice turned up dressed carelessly, with a menu produced on a scrap of paper. His heart didn’t seem to be in it, and the other candidate was clearly the better option. He’s now in place, and doing a great job.
“I had reservations. Candidates can often come across well at interview, particularly if they’re good at self-promotion. The real proof is when you put them to the test in the kitchen, and give them some management tasks to complete. I convinced the school to continue the process through to the end.”
“Our role is to remain impartial, but to point out positives and negatives. Experience shows us what to look for, and this is a complex position. A Chef Manager doesn’t just need cooking skills, but administration and management ability too. Our 5 point plan covers all the bases, and helps to neutralise those initial ‘instant’ impressions.”