Nail that Interview

Chefs are in demand and some restaurants and hospitality businesses are even offering signing on bonuses. Indeed, there has never been a better time to be a chef. However, just because there is a shortage does not mean you can just show up and expect to get what you want. The best jobs are going to go to the best candidates and that means now is the perfect time to work on your interview skills.

Craig Taylor of recruitment specialists TTW Recruitment tells The Chefs’ Knowledge the best way to prepare.

“There are two stages to an interview and the hardest work is done before you actually show up. My advice is that you research the employer in advance. What do I mean by that? For starters, look at their menus,  reviews and even visit the business and try it out as a customer. I can tell you that they will love that degree of seriousness!

“Make sure you prepare the night before and get ready. Work out how you are going to get there. Keep a note of who you are meeting and what their position is. Get your clothes ready. All these little details take the pressure off and show how in control you are. Don’t forget that prospective employers are looking at far more than just your ability to cook.

“Make sure you have left enough time for an interview and that you don’t have to rush away. That never looks good. Read through your CV and any documents you are taking to make sure it’s all neat, tidy and correct. The last thing you want is to be handing something over that is messy and untrue.

Prepare some questions. If you don’t know what to ask then use these:

The second part of the process is the interview itself. Here are some thoughts to bear in mind. 

“Turn your phone off! This is so important. Next, don’t forget to smile and say ‘Hello, nice to meet you!” (You can’t go wrong!)

“If you shake hands then do so with confidence and make eye contact. These little details add up.

Try not to be nervous, treat it like a fact finding chat. You want to know about them and they want to know about you!

“A good interviewer will make you feel at ease, give you an insight to the job and company. They should ask you questions or allow you to tell them about you. Try and give open answers, avoid yes and no, expand on what you are saying and where possible, give examples!

“Be honest with your answers, its ok if you don’t know or ask them to put the question another way if you don’t understand.

“Ask your questions, its your chance to interview them and find out what you want to know.

Don’t be afraid to ask about money, hours etc – its all good stuff!

“At the end, thank them for the time, shake hands, smile and say “look forward to hearing from you!”

Finally, remember these don’ts!