Owner and CEO of CSE Inc.
The hospitality industry is infamous for its high staff turnover rate and the catering business is no exception. With most of the work as temporary in nature, and the business being seasonal, many companies find it challenging to find, hire, and retain, high quality people to provide excellent service at their events or in their restaurants. Today we will focus on the catering industry, but these tips are cross applicable to the restaurant industry as well!
Hiring and training any employee is costly and time-consuming, but nevertheless an incredibly important part of your business. We at Common Sense Events supply this so you don't have to (shameless plug, I know!), but for your team that isn't more temporary in nature, it essential to hire quality staff that will stay with your business long-term. This is especially important for sales and logistical managers, chefs, and other positions where a high turnover rate could be damaging and especially impactful to the longevity of the business.
On to the specifics! Typically, a competent person that is excited to work for you is going to put effort into the initial interview. Some things to look for are: showing up early, and being well groomed. This is not to say that they will be wearing a suit and tie, but initial presentation will tell you a lot about a person and how they will represent your company. Hair should be tidy and groomed (facial hair as well!).
Since this is a guest facing position, one of the immediate qualities to look for is an outgoing personality and a smile. Smiles are one of the most underrated parts of the makeup of a good service industry professional and especially working in high pressure scenarios, you will want someone who can smile and maintain a positive attitude and demeanor. The interviewee should offer to shake your hand, make good, consistent eye contact and speak in a clear voice that is easy to hear and understand. A confident person will also think to ask questions of you along the way. The quality of these questions will be a good determining factor to gauge their experience level and asking follow up questions might be necessary to figure out whether they will be able to serve your brand effectively.
Giving real scenarios and asking questions based on real life examples of things that have happened while working will give you an idea of the responses and interactions that you can expect from that person while they are working for you.
Good questions include:
Asking about their opinion of teamwork and how they feel that plays into the workplace is very important as it will give you insight into how they will integrate with your current team. You don't want to hire someone with a chip on their shoulder, someone who is entitled, or someone who won't ask for help if they get overwhelmed. This can have serious consequences especially during high pressure times and this could dramatically impact how your guests and clients view your company.
Hiring high quality staff is essential to the success of your business because your staff are the interaction point between your quality food and the guests. The guests impression of your company will not only be formed from their opinion of your food, but also the service with with that food is presented. If you aren't committed to quality in customer service AS WELL AS quality in the products and services you provide, you won't be in business for long as the market is increasingly competitive and people have so many choices in today's marketplace. Remember, you aren't just hiring a server or waiter, your hiring someone who is solely representing your business to each of your clients.
Recap: What to look for right away:
We hope this guide has been helpful! Share and pass along if you found it valuable! Have a wonderful day and happy hiring! For a customer quote for a service team for your catering or event company, contact us today!