6 Qualities to Search for in a Restaurant Kitchen Manager

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A restaurant kitchen manager is integral to the flow of operations at a restaurant. They keep the staff working together as a united team to maximize productivity and efficiency. Therefore, their performance at their duties as a manager directly affects how successful your restaurant business is in the long term. So, finding a qualified kitchen manager to run your team is imperative if you want to make your business stand out from the growing competition.

How well your restaurant’s kitchen operates in terms of efficiency and quality of food significantly depends on your kitchen manager’s skills. A restaurant kitchen manager is responsible for various duties, including kitchen staff recruitment, staff duty delegation, inventory management, vendors management, kitchen costing, and more. A kitchen manager is a leader, and as one, they must be effective communicators who can bring the best out of their team. Alongside communication skills, there are other essential qualities that kitchen managers must possess, and this article goes over them.

6 Qualities to Search for in a Restaurant Kitchen Manager

A kitchen manager has no shortage of tasks that they must perform every day on the job. Therefore, because they have many responsibilities at work, you must pick one suited for the job at your restaurant.

If you’re looking to hire a kitchen manager, here are 6 qualities to search for in a restaurant kitchen manager.

1. Excellent Communication Skills

A good restaurant manager knows how to communicate with every other staff member effectively so that the tasks they have to perform and other information about it is clear. This also means that the manager must communicate all changes in terms of inventory, equipment, and costs to the kitchen staff so that everyone is on the same page.

On the other hand, the kitchen manager must also communicate concerns staff have to upper management. This way, improvements to the kitchen can be made to enhance restaurant management on the whole.

2. Decision-Making Skills

When a kitchen manager in a restaurant receives concerns from the kitchen staff, they must make vital decisions to solve problems as soon as possible. When the restaurant owner is not available, the kitchen manager must step in and make decisions that they believe are in the business’s best interest. Taking ownership of the kitchen through prompt decision-making also allows staff to count on the kitchen manager to solve problems when they arrive.

Problem-Solving Should be at the Forefront of Every Decision 

In a restaurant business, problems can come up unexpectedly on any day. A proficient restaurant kitchen manager should be able to address said problems with viable solutions. For example, if there’s an inventory issue at the restaurant, the kitchen manager must manage the demand for that good so that the restaurant can operate smoothly until the inventory is restocked. A kitchen manager who can solve problems helps other staff members feel at ease, knowing that their manager can handle challenges. As a result, they can divert all attention to their own jobs. 

3. Empathetic to Other Staff Members

The kitchen manager in your restaurant should be empathetic to the kitchen staff’s job-related stress and the processes and duties of their job. By knowing the ins and outs of how a commercial kitchen operates, they can know when more staff is needed and what changes can be made to make processes as efficient and productive as possible.

4. Receptive to Learning More from Others

A great leader must not be against receiving, accepting, and implementing new ideas in your restaurant. Your kitchen manager should, in fact, try to encourage and accommodate requests, suggestions, and propositions from other staff members. Doing so showcases that your restaurant kitchen manager values kitchen staff input and trusts their expertise. This can help improve employee retention as more employees at the restaurant will feel valued by the enterprise and satisfied with their jobs. Better employee retention helps your restaurant save money in the long term because you’ll spend less on employee rehiring and training.

5. Fantastic Multi-Tasker

As discussed above, a kitchen manager is responsible for several different tasks pertaining to a restaurant’s kitchen. Therefore, they should be able to manage several different tasks simultaneously while devoting enough time and energy to each aspect of the job. They must ensure that they perform their duties on time and without any compromise in quality. This way, they can improve efficiency in the kitchen, which can increase table turnover, resulting in better customer satisfaction.

6. Is Impartial to All Employees

A healthy work environment is when every employee is treated respectfully, and their expertise and input are valued. This is also the case with restaurants, and a restaurant kitchen manager must not play favourites with their employees. Every employee must be rewarded for their hard work, and the kitchen manager must see that this is done fairly and impartially. Partiality in your restaurant can spell disaster for your business because you will begin to lose talent. While losing exceptional employees is a huge loss in itself, the costs of rehiring and training can be too high to bear if employee retention is weak.

In addition to impartiality, your kitchen manager must act as an inspiration to all employees by taking care of their needs. If some kitchen staff members are struggling more than others, the kitchen manager must motivate them to excel. 

Last Few Words on a Restaurant Kitchen Manager

Now that you know what qualities to search for in a restaurant kitchen manager, you can be sure to find a leader that’ll help improve operations in your restaurant. When picking a kitchen manager for your restaurant, make sure to keep the needs of your business in mind and look for a candidate with experience working in a business like yours. This way, they will be able to understand your vision for your restaurant and help bring it to life.

Did you find this article helpful for your food business? Well, you can find more articles on restaurant management and marketing on our website’s blog section. Our invaluable restaurant trade secrets will help you take your business to the next level, and our highly-skilled restaurant consultants will help you achieve that!

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About the Author

Massimo’s career has grown up through the restaurant world, starting as a waiter through to high-end restaurant openings within an operational management capacity. This depth of experience has allowed him to understand the business from both a guest’s needs to what a team needs, giving him the benefit of an all-rounded view and approach to problem solving.