University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Career development as a chef
Professional development is the acquisition of knowledge and skills for career advancement. It enables an individual to acquire personal development which is essential for better job performance. It will entail utilizing various learning opportunities which ranges from acquiring a college degree and other formal coursework relevant for doing exemplary good in the hotel and tourism industry. There are many approaches undertaken in enhancing career development. They include lesson study, mentoring and getting advises from members of staff who have worked and are experienced in the industry. One may also get career development through active consultation, coaching, and undertaking lesson study from a learning institution. Technical skills will be developed through technical assistance and reflective supervision.
In his book on leadership skills in the tourism and service industry Rogers (2008) asserts that hotel and tourism just like other careers should engage in professional development. Individuals working in these industries should participate in professional development to serve their interest in the lifelong learning. This will show a high sense of moral obligation that brings along professional competence among the employees and other members of staff in tourism and hotel industry. Career and professional development will enable institutional members in enhancing career progression, to comply with the existing and changing regulations and to keep the organization updated with the new technology and practices that is necessary for the long-term survival of the organization.
Career development will possibly include informal and formal types of vocational education and training. This is in the form of post secondary and poly-technical training which leads to academic qualification or credential that are required to get or retain an employment in case the person being trained had secured an employment in an organization. Technical and professional development may be obtained in the form of pre-service or in the in-service professional development programs. These kinds of programs are usually formal, informal; they may be conducted at a group level or individualized to suit a person professional requirement of the skills needed in his job. This means that in an organization an individual may pursue professional development independently or the human resource department may undertake the task of developing skills of individuals in the company. When professional development is done on the job by the human resource department it will enhance leadership skills which are necessary for undertaking the role of decision making in the organization. For an individual to have proper leadership abilities it means that he has to acquire high analytical and conceptual skills, this is only possible through academic training (Rogers 2008)
Working as a chef needs one to be highly skilled and being adept in all facets of food preparation. The role of a chef means that the person carries the responsibility of all kitchen activity. This kind of work includes plating design, making orders and purchases of inventory to be used in food preparation and other relevant kitchen work, management of kitchen staff and preparation of menu. It is this menu that gives customers illustrations on food prices and how to budget their cash and spending in a hotel. Therefore, the tasks and personal decisions undertaken by a chef has a direct impact to the customers hence he is of great value to the organization. When one is appointed as a head chef he is given a task of making larger executive decisions which include giving the direction of menu and having final authority in the staff management decisions. This position is usually present in places where there are multiple restaurants.
For a person to succeed in the hotel industry as a chef he has to possess notable skills. These skills must be learnt either formally or informally to enhance career development. For instance a great chef must be creative and should always be trying something new in the market and in the industry. His creativity should inspire food presentation which is a very great aspect to the overall dining experience. He should have a tremendous passion for beverages, food and cooking. He should enjoy the process of selecting foods, creating menus and preparing meal for his customers. In addition to the above qualities he should have a keen business sense and should run the kitchen in a way to produce food which is of high quality but at cost effective means as well as enabling efficiency in the process of food production.
In his book Florian D, (1992) a chef should pay close attention to cooking and food service detail. This is because cooking is a science and hence each ingredient used in the process has a certain role that a chef should be continually aware of. He should understand his role in food preparation team, therefore engaging in active teamwork to ensure that organizational goals are achieved. He should work harmoniously to ensure that the company produces quality foods. In ensuring proper service delivery, a chef should work well with members of staff and management. He should practice his skills a lot as preparing food requires a high level of expertise. Therefore, a chef should never stop perfecting his or her cooking techniques.
Career development as a chef will improve a person’s ability to multitask and handling perfectly many tasks at once. One should be responsible for all elements relating to a meal and ensuring that everything is completed at the right time. He should also avoid customer delay making sure they are served at the right time. It is this proper customer service that guarantees a company survival and increases the level of its competitiveness in the extensive industry. A successful chef should always be committed to preparing a high quality meal for his customers. He should do so by seeking the right and the finest ingredients and use the best proven techniques in delivering the best product at cost effective method.
Professional development will increase the chef ability to think and make timely decisions when his company meets a challenge. Food preparation industry needs proper timing and hence a chef should possess proper analytical and conceptual skills that increase his ability to make decisions and solve problems immediately they arise. A firm that is able to make decision quickly and on a timely basis will be able to keep customers satisfied and operations will be able to flow smoothly Carnoll (2010). A great chef should be able to handle criticism from customers and hence ensuring proper customer relationship between the company and its esteemed customers who constitute his market; this will have a long term benefit when the company market share increases. Not everyone will like what a chef prepares therefore a great chef should take criticisms positively.
In outsourcing for the right employees in a tourism and hotel industries most companies will put into consideration the possible qualities of an individual. They will probably analyze his strengths and weaknesses then from the analysis the key skills will be identified. If the strengths exceed the weaknesses with a considerable margin then this person will be hired to work in the organization. Companies will undertake an accurate review of the possible qualities of an individual based on personal attributes such as personality, values and motivations. A person’s behavior in the organization will also be greatly influenced by his emotional intelligence, his leadership skills, charismatic power, and ability to influence other members of staff in pursuing organizational goals and objectives.
Personality can be defined as the inherent individual behavior that a person falls back to when all other forces of the outside world are accounted for or when under pressure from the external forces. It is the organized developed system within an individual that represents the collective action of a person’s psychological subsystems which go hand in hand to describe an individual personal trait. In his book personality psychology Cervone and Pervin (2014) he describes personality as a five factor model. This model describes and provides a great overview of personality and how it should relate with the work environment. A person with a positive personality is described as having ability to bring success to the company out of his individual behavior. He is portrayed with great respect among other members of staff and he is capable of ensuring success to the organization when customers flock the company out of his good reputation. A chef should therefore be of good personality to achieve the hotel and tourism objectives.
For an individual to improve his personality attributes he should possess the following qualities. He should be open to experience and learn new and emerging issues necessary for improving his skills and expertise. Openness to experience means that an individual is highly interested and flexible in experiencing new things. Work environment is highly dynamic and hence members of staff should adopt this kind of personality so that positive changes being desired by the organization are quickly integrated. A chef who aims at maximizing his service in the industry should not be rigid to changes as this can easily make the company to lag behind when customers view the services as being old fashioned and out of date. Most of the individuals are more close minded and rigid to organization changes and in how they approach new experiences; therefore, it is the work of management to ensure that this kind of rigidity is discouraged amongst its workers through behavior changes and sometimes motivation speeches.
Conscientiousness is another personality attribute a person should possess in order to become successful in his career. A person who is high in conscientiousness will tend to be diligent and dutiful according to the way he approaches his work and life matters. Therefore for one to become a great chef and ensure success in the hotel industry a person should be able to possess this kind of personality. The individual will be able to plan his work early in advance and work towards achieving the set individual and organizational objectives. Diligence calls for individual discipline in how a person plans his work and the way he undertakes tasks to accomplish a certain goal.
Florian. D (1992) for a chef to be successful in his career he should possess a personality trait of extraversion. This is a highly recognizable personality trait as it can easily be felt and seen by those who have a close interaction with the chef. A chef should be able to interact with other members of staff in the kitchen department so as to ensure that the right food is prepared and served. He should contribute his ideas and views on proper methods of food preparation. With this kind of an approach they will be able to work together to achieve the organization goal and hence adding value to the company. Value addition is seen when the hotel revenues increases and the profits retained are re invested in the company; this is only possible when chefs just as other members of staff work towards achieving organizational goals. A person with an introversion personality trait is unable to interact with co workers and hence making it difficult for the company to achieve both its short term and long term goals. An introvert will tend to draw energy from reflection and will prefer working on his own or in small groups. For a chef who wants to succeed in his career introversion will automatically lead to failure as this kind of an occupation calls for teamwork.
A successful chef should possess a high level of agreeableness. This personality trait aims at ensuring the level of friendliness and hostility that an individual member display when interacting with others. A person considered to have high level of agreeableness is perceived to be more trustworthy and those with a lower level of agreeableness are perceived as more oppositional and more suspicious. Therefore, a chef should possess a personality trait in agreeableness. This will make it easy to work in a group and in a team since he can easily be trusted hence making teamwork easy. It is as result that decision making process will be fastened making service delivery easy and more timely. A company with proper service delivery will be rated as a successful company hence succeeding in its bid to attract more customers and markets.
A chef should also possess a low personality trait of neuroticism. This means that he is able to control his emotion. A person who is highly neurotic will tend to be less stable. He get angry quickly thus demonstrating negative emotions which are not desirable for an organization environment. A person who shows emotional stability is regarded as being pleasant and resistant to stress. A chef who possesses such positive traits will not get angered quickly if criticized in his tasks. He will be able to rectify errors, omission and mistakes committed in his work. By doing this an organization is guaranteed of success since high quality services can easily be offered. The members of staff will be able to learn their mistakes and rectify them for the advantage of the company.
To ensure proper service delivery a chef should understand the personality traits of individual co workers as this is very critical to the success of the organization. Personality is a key driver of individual behavior. Therefore, it calls for the members of staff and the overall company to consider this critical aspect that is very important in the success of any organization. An individual personality trait should be modeled to suit organizational needs to ensure long term success of the company.
Jackson (2002) an individual values and motivators will have a big impact on his performance in the company and in the overall hotel and tourism industry. A person attitude is his or her prospective in performing a certain task. Simply it aims at answering what is the motivating factor behind a person in pursuit of the organization goals? A strong attitude of achievement brings a positive effect and success to the organization unlike a weak attitude which discourages goal attainment. Pervin (2014) a person’s attitude has a close impact on the personality of an individual although it varies from one person to another. For a chef to remain outstanding in performance he should therefore posses a strong attitude and a great determination for success in relation to his work place or in the company he is working for. It is by possessing this trait that he will be able to generate good outcome.
According to Mc Cleland D.C (1951) an employee who would like to succeed in his position in a tourism and hotel industry should possess general creativity ability. This means that person is able to use his analytical and conceptual skills in making fast and efficient decisions necessary to solve a problem as early as it occurs and with the immediate effect it so desires. A chef will require creativity in drawing fast hand solutions for the challenges his organization is faced to. He should be able to influence people positively. This includes both members of staff and customers. It is by doing this that the company is able to retain its existing customers and attracting other customers in a bid to enlarging the companies’ available market. He should be able to make decisions faster coupled with advice from other members of the organization. Quick decision making is necessary for ensuring positive service delivery in the hotel industry.
In his book on hotel management Rogers (2007) pointed out that a chef should be highly equipped with relevant knowledge pertaining to the tasks under him or he is obligated to do. He should restrain from undertaking technical duties which he is not relevant with. He should ensure moral fulfillment amongst his co workers and partners in the industry that he works in. Moral fulfillment is directly related to motivation. Therefore members of staff who are highly motivated will work hard in ensuring that organization objectives are met and ensure that they are achieved on a timely basis. A chef should maintain a high level of intellectual status and ability to think and making wise decisions when required to do so. Everything a chef sets to do should ensure motivation to his co workers hence making them to invest more efforts in attaining the organizational goals.
A successful chef should portray positive emotional intelligence and hence ability to control his emotions regarding his job and service delivery. Emotional intelligence is that individual ability to control, perceive and evaluate emotions when they arise .According to Robbins et al (2008) emotions and moods are dominant factors which employees’ experiences. Emotions are described as intense feelings directed at someone while moods just as emotions are feelings which are not so intense still directed to someone. Having positive emotion and mood means that the chef will work efficiently with others, and will not be quick anger or over-react in the event of provocation. To prevent negative moods and emotions a chef should avoid being stressed, prevent social activities that affect his individual behavior negatively. He should exercise a lot during his free time to reduce the level of accumulated stress during the day time when at work. According to McGrogan (2007) a person’s level of productivity should be great during the daytime since it is at this time that he will be able to focus and concentrate. This is unlike during the night when many people are exhausted hence a chef should display this character.
Florian (1992) asserts that a great chef should possess proper leadership skills in ensuring that the process of service delivery is accurately undertaken. He should be able to control and govern his subordinates and guide them towards the process of attaining the objectives and the goals of the organization. Acting as a chief chef he has a role of guiding the assistant chefs in service delivery. He should have charisma and should have a proper vision and risk taking qualities that are necessary in ensuring investments in the tourism and hotel industry he works for. A successful chef may be required to work in a leadership position. At this level he has the responsibility to represent the subordinates in decision making process. He needs to be a visionary leader who thinks about the future and dealing with tough issues that directly affect the organizations activities. To have the following attributes and leadership skills a chef should be of high integrity with ability to be trusted Carnoll (2010). He should show a high level of competence in the tasks he undertakes similarly to the tasks he delegates among the subordinates. He should be loyal, consistent and open to the executives above him in the organization hierarchy. It is this commitment in work that ensures overall success of the company’s activities. He should be able to act as liaison, conflict manager, and ability to train and develop skills as well as trouble shooting any event that may befall a company.
A successful chef, Rogers (2007) argued that he should possess exemplary ability to influence other positively making them to work as he desires and for the advantage of the company he is working for. He should display personal power in his task of service delivery as this relates to being unique in how he serves his market and customers. Expert and referent factors are also important in his work since he should show his expertise as a chef and how he can use that skill to achieve the long term goal of bringing success to the company he should try to eliminate work politics as this will lead to increased stress, reducing performance in service delivery and job dissatisfaction. All this brings poor performance to the tourism industry in its pursuit to achieve better productivity and revenue generation.
For a chef to ensure success in his work of service delivery in the hotel industry he should try hard to eradicate organizational politics to increase productivity of the organization objectives. Organizational politics have been observed to bring enemity among workmates. This is very dangerous as it limits teamwork, which is very necessary in attaining organizational goals.
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