Restaurant Management Job Interview Tips & Advice
|Restaurant Management Job Interview Tips & Advice|
|Restaurant Management Interview Tips - Pg 2|
1. Dress for SUCCESS, dress like a PROFESSIONAL - NOT like your going out bar hopping or to hang out with your friends!!! This means a dress shirt, slacks, polished shoes and a tie for males at a minimum -- adding a sport coat or wearing a suit is even better. For women we recommend business like attire -- slacks or skirt & blouse or a suit are good choices -- neither too low cut nor too short. You only have one chance to make a good first impression, make it a good one! (The only exception to this rule should be if you are coming directly from a current job where your uniform is different than the above, just make sure the recruiter knows this.)
2. If you are serious about getting a job, before interviewing with any restaurant company, DO YOUR RESEARCH! Visit (and eat at) at least one of the company's restaurants if you have not done so previously -- AND then visit their website and see what else you can learn. During your interviews, you will be asked about your dining experience at their restaurant(s) and questions WILL be expected of you, so prepare a short list of questions to bring with you.
Visiting restaurants, corporate websites and developing a set of targeted questions go a long way in demonstrating your focus on both your career and the restaurant company you are interviewing (Yes, you are interviewing them too. You don't want to work for just any restaurant company do you? You WILL be asked why you want to work for their company so be focused with your answer.)
3. Turn off your cell phone and remove the earpiece if you use one prior to walking in to any job interview (and be sure to get rid of any gum you have in your mouth). All this should happen before you even get out of your car.
4. Job interviews are your opportunity to sell your talents and skills. Don't be modest -- but don't be egotistical either.
Your goal is to show the interviewer you are knowledgable, capable, intelligent and adaptable with the right people skills needed to fill their open management position. You'll be asked about your past and present job responsibilities so come prepared to talk about them and your accomplishments in performing your job -- ex.'s "Reduced labor cost by X percent"; "Increased sales Y percent by doing blah, blah, blah"; "Trained Z M.I.T.'s in the past 12 months, 3 of whom are now General Managers."
Whatever you do though, don't leave them thinking you already feel you "know it all" and have nothing to learn.
5. Be personable as well as professional at all times. Be polite to EVERYONE you come in contact with, even walking through the parking lot or getting on an elevator. This includes swearing or using slang (or talking trash about someone/something), you never know who might end up providing input on you.
6. Listen more, talk less! Odds are if you find you're talking for longer than 10-15 seconds at a stretch in an interview, you're probably talking too much. Remember, the longer you talk, the greater the chance that wrong things will come out of your mouth. (And remember, NEVER INTERRUPT, cut off or get in to an argument with the interviewer!)
Generally speaking, interviewers are NOT looking for someone to tell them what's wrong with their restaurants, they're looking for managers that can maintain standards & company policies, successfully develop the people under them, create a positive experience for their staff & guests and drop as much profit as possible to the bottom line. Use these concepts as a basis for creatively selling yourself as the best possible candidate for the job.
7. Come prepared for your job interview. This means bringing at least two copies of your resume, a writing tablet/notepad and at least two pens. You should also have or know your social security number as well as previous employment information going back at least three jobs or 10 years, whichever comes first.
This employment information should include company name(s), dates worked, contact phone numbers, names of your supervisor at each job and along with a short explanation for leaving each position.
8. Dot your "i's", cross your "t's". Despite having your resume in hand, just about all restaurant companies will require you to fill out an application at some point in the job interview process (usually for legal reasons). Fill it out COMPLETELY! Not doing so can be construed as laziness, lack of attention to detail, or worse -- lack of follow through or commitment.
9. Be aware of body language, "vibes" and reactions. This means both yours and the recruiter's. Though it is far from an exact science, some recruiters put a lot of stock in what body language says about a person.
On your side, paying attention to subtle changes in the recruiter's body language can help you assess how well received your responses are. Use these cues as a tool to adapt your presentation. Rethink/rephrase things when they may not be positively received; stress those job skills that they seem to like hearing about; etc.
10. Though it may not always be apparent, most restaurant management job interview questions are usually asked for specific reason(s). If you are not sure what you are being asked, feel free to ask for clarification before answering. And with all questions, take a moment to think about and formulate your answers before you speak.
Quite often the focus points of "People - Sales - Profit" and how your management skills can/have/will positively effect these areas of a restaurant's operation are a good basis for your answer(s).