Thomas N Salzano: Challenges Faced at the First Day as a Chef

The first day at work is filled with excitement, nervousness, and courage to manage everything with perfection, says Thomas N Salzano, a food blogger and a chef by profession. But for a new chef, the first day is not easy, the first day comes with a lot of challenges that cannot be ignored even on the first day.

To manage a new kitchen is always a challenge, and for a new chef like you, communication and expectations make it a bit difficult. When Thomas N Salzano joined as a new chef in a renowned restaurant in New York, he too faced some challenges that are shattered in this article today.

He feels that these are common challenges, and one should not feel discouraged. The best thing that you can do is be aware and prepared for these ford day challenges.

Thomas J Salzano - Eating Raisins with Your Meals (2)

Let’s look at the top five first day challenges shared by Thomas Salzano based on his experience as a chef:

  • Competition

The first challenge you face is competition as not everyone is so welcoming. On the other hand, to match with the restaurant’s standards on your first day is a challenge in itself. As a new chef, the expectation level from you is already high and one little mistake can show the expression of disappointment on the faces of your team. Competition in terms of maintaining the standards, food presentation, and matching the expectations of the customers as well as the employer is too much to be handled at once.

Although you get comfortable and creative with each passing day, you need to keep patience and try to multitask in the first few days of your job as a chef. 

  • Customer Expectations

It is your first day, but the customers of the restaurant are not new. They are the loyal customers who visit the restaurant for their favorite food, great customer service, and exotic environment. You as a chef need to match those expectations, also if you go for some creativity it’s a risky game. As the customers may or may not like the experiment. But in case they do like the creativity of your dish, it can become your new specialty.

The best you can do in this case is go for proper training in the same kitchen, observe and learn. Do not hesitate to ask for assistance as your goal is to satisfy the customers and maintain the reputation of the restaurant.  

Thomas N Salzano - Eating Raisins with Your Meals (1)
  • The staff of the Restaurant

The first few days at work can be challenging in order to match up with the speed of the staff of the restaurant. Your first interaction at work will be with the staff of the restaurant, and as a fact, each one has their own way of working. Until you figure out the best way to coordinate with them, you need to work as per their preference and style of working. Language barriers are another challenging factor at work because as a chef you can not afford to cook a meal that is not even asked for.

The best way out is, to work under assistance for a few days or even if you have joined a new take-out time for induction and interaction with everyone. This will help you figure out the expected and some unexpected barriers at work.

  • Sustainability

 In your training period, you must be taught about sustainability at work. To put the same learning into practice in a new working atmosphere is a challenge. Especially, when you try to pinpoint and manage to incorporate sustainability at work.

Sustainability in the kitchen is linked to wastage and garbage disposal, which is somewhat related to the management. You as a chef can share your suggestions on improving and implementing sustainable practices, but remember not to be bossy or criticize the already existing process.

The best suggestion here can be by starting more seasonal with choices for the menu. Followed by reducing wastage in the kitchen, and recycling the waste in the most sustainable way. 

  • Technology Challenges

The management and learning to use the technology used in the kitchen for preparing meals to serve the meal is again a challenge for a new chef. Some restaurants use traditional cooking methods whereas some have advanced machinery installed to make the process of cooking easy and quick.

As a chef, you might not be familiar with all kinds of technologies used in the kitchen, and it is a challenge for you to learn and start using the existing technology in the kitchen.

Thomas Salzano - Chicken and Dumplings (5)

These are the top five challenges that you may face as a new chef in the first few days at work. Thomas N Salzano says although now there is proper training and induction for the new chef to eradicate the barriers. Now good management is a part of reputation building and restaurants do not compromise with it. So do not worry and ask for assistance, or training if required if you have joined as a new chef.

Thomas N Salzano: Challenges Faced at the First Day as a Chef

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