How to Run a Restaurant Kitchen. The kitchen is the heart of a restaurant and needs to be staffed with reliable, energetic experienced people who understand teamwork. In order for any restaurant to be successful, the kitchen manager must hand pick the very best candidates to create a coordinated, enthusiastic staff that supports the front of the house in its mission to deliver the best service and food possible.
View the kitchen as a team effort. Hire the best people for each spot and make sure that all are clear on specific roles and how they coordinate. Acknowledge and respect everyone in the kitchen for their contribution to the mission. Reward performance and promote from within.
Maintain a high degree of focus as the kitchen manager. Communicate with the staff to promote efficiency and productivity while being cost-conscious. Make the management of the staff a priority over concerns for the menu.
Hand over all responsibility for the menu to the head chef. Hire someone who is confident and creative and able to inspire the kitchen staff with a high degree of energy and enthusiasm. Meet regularly with the head chef to cultivate teamwork and cooperation.
Hire a sous chef who is willing and capable of stepping into the lead role when the head chef is not available. Assign the sous chef the duties of training new kitchen staff, ordering food, costing out the menu, managing inventories and working out a standard training program.
Choose line cooks who demonstrate flexibility and a willingness to learn. Look for people who are quick studies and eager to learn, who function well under stress and who communicate well with other staff.
Allow the chef and sous chef to participate in the hiring of all prep cooks. Make sure all prep cooks understand the entire menu as well as the operation of all the kitchen equipment. Cross-train some of the prep cooks to step up as line cooks when needed.
Add top-notch dishwashers to the team, one that realizes the importance of sparking clean dishes, glassware and kitchen equipment. Encourage the entire kitchen staff of the importance of the dishwashers. Remind people that nearly all head chefs spent time as dishwashers.