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kalaeb
03-18-2011, 11:40 AM
Okay, so I have a tendancy to work longer than I probably should, considering the family at home. But I have been working in the restaurant business since I was 15 and long hours were just the norm.

Just out of curiosity, in case it is not the norm and I am just a sucker...REALLY...how many hours per week do you work?

I usually do 11-12 hour days five days a week for about 55-60 hours. I usally answer emails in the wee hours of the morning and late at night. That would be a grand total of 60-65 hours give or take. This is what I have understood to be the norm. Anyone working more? Anyone working less?

This is not limited to the restaurant industry. I would love to hear how many hours everyone else is working too. (except state and federal employees, we all know you are capped at 40.lol)

JBroida
03-18-2011, 01:43 PM
Okay, so I have a tendancy to work longer than I probably should, considering the family at home. But I have been working in the restaurant business since I was 15 and long hours were just the norm.

Just out of curiosity, in case it is not the norm and I am just a sucker...REALLY...how many hours per week do you work?

I usually do 11-12 hour days five days a week for about 55-60 hours. I usally answer emails in the wee hours of the morning and late at night. That would be a grand total of 60-65 hours give or take. This is what I have understood to be the norm. Anyone working more? Anyone working less?

This is not limited to the restaurant industry. I would love to hear how many hours everyone else is working too. (except state and federal employees, we all know you are capped at 40.lol)

When i was cooking, it was closer to 16 hours a day 6 days a week (sometimes 7... or sometimes just a half day on the 7th day). About 80+ hours a week.

Now days, its much more, but it feels like less... i pretty much never stop working (i just dont always do it from a desk... my cell phone runs my life)

monty
03-18-2011, 02:30 PM
Right now I work three jobs, so I won't even try to get into the number of hours I work. When I was a cook I worked around 8 hours a day, 7 days a week. Most of the prep work for the afternoon was taken care of by the lunch guy so that took up a lot of slack.

The difference between my work now and then is that now I have the freedom to come and go pretty much whenever I please, and the stress level is much different. As I said in an earlier post, I still have nightmares about tickets piling up and forgetting which steaks belong on which plates with which sides. For all the romance of the Food Network, I think very few people realize how strenuous and stressful kitchen work is! I can't imagine how I'd juggle being a chef with a home life, wife, and three boys ages 6,5,and 4.

Ichi
03-18-2011, 02:36 PM
91 a week sometimes more.

Eamon Burke
03-19-2011, 05:19 PM
Anywhere from 40 to 65 a week, usually around 50 or so. I work hilarious hours now for cooking...630am to 430pm mon-fri, no work on school holidays.

There are many who disagree, and many who have proven otherwise for their families, but I do not think food service is a career compatible with having a family. If you have time for them, you don't have money for them, and vice versa.

That's why I'm getting out! Again!

cnochef
03-28-2011, 04:19 PM
(except state and federal employees, we all know you are capped at 40.lol)

Here in Canada, it can be even less. I work as the chef at a govt org, Mon-Fri 7 hours a day or 35 hours per week, for a very handsome salary and benefits. Do you hate me? I see it as my just reward after 30 years in the biz:)

shankster
03-28-2011, 04:57 PM
Here in Canada, it can be even less. I work as the chef at a govt org, Mon-Fri 7 hours a day or 35 hours per week, for a very handsome salary and benefits. Do you hate me? I see it as my just reward after 30 years in the biz:)

Yo guy!! Hook a brotha up!! :)

Chef Niloc
03-28-2011, 07:55 PM
When I was in school I worked a seasonal job every summer ( 5 summers) I worked 7 days a week 16-18 hours a day for 22 weeks, I was payed $12 hr cash ( 1992-1997). When i would go back to school it felt like a brake. I also felt like the richest man in the wold, as I had next to no bills back then and no time all summer to spend any cash.

Not counting right now opening the new place and all I WAS working 5, 14hr days a week.
It's looking like this summer with the new place might remind me of the old days :bashhead:

Bryan G.
03-29-2011, 06:51 AM
Yesterday I worked from 5am (inventory, ordering) in the morning til 10pm at night. We just rolled a new menu out yesterday that the Executive Chef and I and staff have been working towards. The current place I work is NEVER closed barring hurricane, NEVER. Lunch and Dinner EVERY day of the year. I have been working a lot but not as much as I have (but probably harder the hours I do work). I am lucky to work with the Chef I do and feel he feels the same about me. We have a young crew for the most part including the other 2 sous chefs so a lot of teaching going on.
It is definitely not a family oriented job for the most part. It's not so much the hours, as I believe (know) you can't do anything right if you don't put the time in, its the way you spend the hours. Like Jon mentions he never stops working but he is not confined to one spot, has time to check phone messages, run errands inbetween, go to lunch with his wife (while working) ... These are things non existent in a Chef's world, a good one anyway. Like I said I am lucky to work with who I do. He has a daughter and understands the "people" side of this business, something a lot of Chef's pay little attention too.

Bryan

stereo.pete
03-29-2011, 09:03 AM
I don't work in the F&B industry but I work a healthy amount due to my chosen career. I average sixty hours a week but after reading this you guys are absolute champs when it comes to maxing out hours. I just hope that those of you working seventy plus hours aren't paid salary. How do you keep from getting burnt out being away from your family and friends so much?

Bryan G.
03-29-2011, 03:04 PM
Pete a lot of us do(get burnt out). Many of the ones who don't I would guess don't have a strong relationship with family at home. And if you do you have a hell of a wife to tolerate and support your chosen career. People have no idea the stress away from the job it brings with relationships nevermind at work. I feel in this business it's a little harder to pull away than in other ones, even though it always takes sacrifice to be great

Eamon Burke
03-29-2011, 03:58 PM
I just hope that those of you working seventy plus hours aren't paid salary. How do you keep from getting burnt out being away from your family and friends so much?

I was paid salary! I made $1800 a month for the first year of my daughter's life, in return for being gone 930am-1030pm/1200am every day but Tuesday. I was basically lied to about how much the job was, the boss made it sound like $16 an hour starting(not 1600 a month--my failing business was making me THAT), and by the time I got my first full paycheck(over 4 weeks later) I had been working there long enough to be stuck...it took a year and a return to school to back out without being unemployed, it was 2009 after all. I still don't make enough money, but I get enough money from grants going to school that I consider it my part-time job.

How do I keep from burning out? I talk a lot at work, and come home and obsess about knives. Now I have office hours, which totally works for me, until I start my own business.

cnochef
03-29-2011, 04:31 PM
Yo guy!! Hook a brotha up!! :)

Just a little too late! I hired a new permanent part-time assistant last month at minimum 25 hours/wk @$21/hr. It's the first time I've had a permanent assistant, and I keep getting busier and busier, so I'm happy needless to say.

shankster
03-29-2011, 04:51 PM
Just a little too late! I hired a new permanent part-time assistant last month at minimum 25 hours/wk @$21/hr. It's the first time I've had a permanent assistant, and I keep getting busier and busier, so I'm happy needless to say.

Dang!! Well if you hear about anything similar, that's exactly what I'm looking for.
I guess it's true what they say "timing is everything"

Eamon Burke
03-29-2011, 05:17 PM
I hired a new permanent part-time assistant last month at minimum 25 hours/wk @$21/hr.

Are dollars worth less over there??!

Then again, I heard on the news today that Texas has the lowest unemployment in America--paired with the lowest earnings.

shankster
03-29-2011, 05:21 PM
Are dollars worth less over there??!

Then again, I heard on the news today that Texas has the lowest unemployment in America--paired with the lowest earnings.

The U.S and Canadian $ are pretty much on par these days give or take a few cents either way.And hopefully it will stay that way.

kalaeb
03-29-2011, 05:24 PM
I was paid salary! I made $1800 a month for the first year of my daughter's life, in return for being gone 930am-1030pm/1200am every day but Tuesday. I was basically lied to about how much the job was, the boss made it sound like $16 an hour starting(not 1600 a month--my failing business was making me THAT), and by the time I got my first full paycheck(over 4 weeks later) I had been working there long enough to be stuck...it took a year and a return to school to back out without being unemployed, it was 2009 after all. I still don't make enough money, but I get enough money from grants going to school that I consider it my part-time job.

How do I keep from burning out? I talk a lot at work, and come home and obsess about knives. Now I have office hours, which totally works for me, until I start my own business.

To keep from burning out, hire good people who are right there with you. And obsessing about knives helps. I find a good sharpening session cures a migraine better than copious amounts of Excederin.

oivind_dahle
03-29-2011, 05:28 PM
Im no chef but works 7 1/2 hours a day 5 days a week - and Im exhausted!!

Chef Niloc
03-29-2011, 08:25 PM
I don't think you get burned out till you stop and think about it? I Try to injoy work as much as I can. I think it's just what your use too? I been doing hour/weeks/years like this so long it's all I know. I'm lost when I have to much "free" time, I find I get more done with the less time I have off.
I will say that it has gotten a little harder the last few years. maybe I'm getting old, but it's most likely the fact that I'm married now. Last summer she had me digging a koi pond under flood light in the middle of the night when I would get home from work. Talk about tired, work 16 hours then come home and dig for 3 hours.

SpikeC
03-29-2011, 08:35 PM
I hire a digger , now!

cnochef
03-29-2011, 08:54 PM
Dang!! Well if you hear about anything similar, that's exactly what I'm looking for.
I guess it's true what they say "timing is everything"

shankster:

A really good place to start if you're looking for a Mon-Fri days gig is ARAMARK, they run contract food services at higher education institutions and also provide business dining services. Also, any prosperous restaurant in our financial district is sure to be looking for weekday help. I'll let you know if I find anything, but that might help you.

shankster
03-29-2011, 09:09 PM
Thanks cnochef! I've heard of ARAMARK and I think I've applied for a job,through them, at U of T about 6 years ago.Unfortunately they told me I was "over qualified" for the job.Maybe I'll try again.I've also thought about applying at a private school like Havergal or something similar.Would ARAMARK run those kinds of kitchens as well?
Thanks again for the tips.
Cheers
Peter

cnochef
03-29-2011, 09:43 PM
Thanks cnochef! I've heard of ARAMARK and I think I've applied for a job,through them, at U of T about 6 years ago.Unfortunately they told me I was "over qualified" for the job.Maybe I'll try again.I've also thought about applying at a private school like Havergal or something similar.Would ARAMARK run those kinds of kitchens as well?
Thanks again for the tips.
Cheers
Peter

That is another good idea! Sometimes the private schools contract out to a company like Aramark, but sometimes they run their own too. Another good place to look is retirement homes.

SpikeC
03-29-2011, 09:52 PM
That is another good idea! Sometimes the private schools contract out to a company like Aramark, but sometimes they run their own too. Another good place to look is retirement homes.

Butt wouldn't you get tired of cooking salisbury steak and pudding?:biggrin2:

cnochef
03-29-2011, 09:54 PM
Thanks cnochef! I've heard of ARAMARK and I think I've applied for a job,through them, at U of T about 6 years ago.Unfortunately they told me I was "over qualified" for the job.Maybe I'll try again.I've also thought about applying at a private school like Havergal or something similar.Would ARAMARK run those kinds of kitchens as well?
Thanks again for the tips.
Cheers
Peter

Here is one I found right away by using Google and the search term chef/manager Toronto:

https://aramark.taleo.net/careersection/2/jobdetail.ftl?lang=en&job=64837

I just thought of another potential employer www.compass-canada.com

Eamon Burke
03-29-2011, 11:21 PM
I work at one of those Hired-by-a-college-caterers! It is amazing hours--630 to 430 mon-fri. Pay sucks, though, and the diet of college kids gets depressing. Still it's the cushiest food service job I've had.

shankster
03-30-2011, 01:39 PM
Here is one I found right away by using Google and the search term chef/manager Toronto:

https://aramark.taleo.net/careersection/2/jobdetail.ftl?lang=en&job=64837

I just thought of another potential employer www.compass-canada.com


Thanks again cno.Much appreciated!I'll check those out.

Chef Niloc
03-30-2011, 11:30 PM
Butt wouldn't you get tired of cooking salisbury steak and pudding?:biggrin2:
Hay I like Salisbury steak! Pudding too, tapioca is my favorite yum yum

shankster
03-31-2011, 12:30 AM
Great avatar Niloc! I just watched "Gangs of New York" last night.Great movie and Daniel Day Lewis plays such a great psycho/patriot.

ecchef
03-31-2011, 03:32 AM
Last summer she had me digging a koi pond under flood light in the middle of the night when I would get home from work. Talk about tired, work 16 hours then come home and dig for 3 hours.

Hey Colin...at any point in your digging, did you ever think about burying the wife and calling it a day? :evilgrin:

Chef Niloc
04-01-2011, 12:13 AM
Hey Colin...at any point in your digging, did you ever think about burying the wife and calling it a day? :evilgrin:
Very funny I might have but she's the medical examiner, not kidding:crying:

Atreidai
04-07-2011, 10:09 AM
Cheers,
I am the sous-chef at my joint, we are small and primarily open to in house guests at our lodge, as well as outside diners, and as a result I typically work about 40-50 hrs/wk. Its salary and its not too bad all considered. I have a great team and a great Chef, so that helps the days move along pretty well.

I worked the Aramark gig for a while just out of university...and the cuisine, if you could call it that, was depressing. After making mashed potatoes by the 150lb batch in a steam kettle large enough to throw a party in using only 4lbs of margerine salt and pepper for flavour and mashing with a potato masher that looked like a medieval weapon (5 ft high with a welded cage on one end that was ball shaped...no shyte) I couldnt take it and took a pay cut to go cook real food.

Now I cook real food and have some pretty easy hours for kitchen folk, cant really complain.

-D

MadMel
04-23-2011, 07:31 AM
Started my first kitchen job as a cook in a chinese restaurant working 12 hrs a day, 6 days a week. Moved on to a hotel and got stuck in the buffet line for 8 hrs a day 5 days a week. Now working in a restaurant, split shift, 13hrs a day at the office including break, 6 days a week.

Chef Niloc
04-30-2011, 02:39 AM
Just broke my old record, 109 hours this week, with 2 days to still go.

JohnnyChance
04-30-2011, 02:42 AM
Just broke my old record, 109 hours this week, with 2 days to still go.

That still leaves you with almost 2.5 hours a day for sleeping and everything else you have to take care of. Plenty of time!

Eamon Burke
05-01-2011, 12:00 PM
That's not work time. You just live at a restaurant!

Over 90 hours at work in a week and it's all academic. Congrats on the record, and touche on working so hard. Now go to sleep.

oivind_dahle
05-01-2011, 12:13 PM
In Norway you are not allowed to work more than 37,5 hours a week. And overtime is max 200 hours a year!!!

goodchef1
05-01-2011, 01:23 PM
Thanks to some great owners from New York. I enjoy a 40hr week downtown, my own scratch menu, and a great salary.

The owners, however, are looking into a second location that is more open to long hours, which will probably put an end to my 40.

50-70hr work week, 2-3 jobs, is nothing uncommon here, with cost of living so high.

bieniek
05-01-2011, 02:47 PM
You wish, do you?
In serious kitchen everywhere in the world golden rule is the same: you have to put time and effort. Especially when you are opening new establishment.
Unfortunately in Norway there is other rule which says that you have to pay salary to everybody, even commis. That is why theres no world class restaurants up here, even though some of the produce is definitely spot on!
And in subject: when worked in London best week was around 100 with average around 70

Salty dog
05-01-2011, 03:20 PM
I'm spoiling myself. I work the rush only and around here it all happens between 6:30 and 9:00. (Except Friday, that's a 12 hour day.) So probably 20. Unless it's summer. Then 12. (Friday's only) My sous works 48.

Eamon Burke
05-01-2011, 04:48 PM
Nah, that's not spoiling yourself. It's the payoff! As long as you keep a close eye on the place all the time, everyone deserves to reap the rewards of a life behind the line.

Salty dog
05-01-2011, 07:18 PM
When we're busy, which we've been lately, I stay in the apt. above the restaurant. So technically you could say 24/7.

Chef Niloc
05-02-2011, 12:24 AM
When we're busy, which we've been lately, I stay in the apt. above the restaurant. So technically you could say 24/7.
Don't count when you are siping cocktails and walking around with a sheet of pap per covering your man hood.

Salty dog
05-02-2011, 07:50 AM
Well, you could call it promotion and marketing.

StephanFowler
05-02-2011, 09:17 AM
Well, you could call it promotion and marketing.

zing, snorted tea all over my computer

JanusInTheGarden
05-04-2011, 11:28 AM
At my current job, I work for about 50-55 hours a week but I'm doing good to get paid for 38 of them. Some jobs have a few drawbacks, but its a resume booster.

Messy Jesse
05-13-2011, 01:13 PM
I did 90 hour weeks for awhile but now I'm back down to about 70 which feels normal. Anything less and I get bored...