October 16

Head Chef Interview Questions


Head Chef Interview Questions That Will Help You Choose the Right Candidate

The information listed on a resume informs you of experience, but reveals little about character, values, and work ethic. Asking unusual head chef interview questions will provide clues to how well your candidate performs as a team player, works under pressure, and resolves conflict. Make a genuine connection with your next standout employee by asking these revealing questions.

What Will We Be Celebrating One Year from Now?

High staff turnover not only creates wasteful expenses, it negatively impacts the morale and performance of your staff. Employees that are given opportunities for growth report higher job satisfaction and tend to stay with the same organization for longer periods of time. Asking your interviewee what accomplishments he envisions celebrating gives insight as to his plans for a chef career. You’ll hear more about his goals and ambitions and gain an understanding of where he tends to focus his energy and attention.

How Would You Describe Your Former Team?

Hindsight provides great opportunity for personal growth. Asking a candidate to describe her former team allows you to assess her ability to reflect upon lessons from the past and transform them into self-awareness. If you’re talking to someone who has a hard time admitting fault or resolving conflict, it will be revealed during the discussion. A leader often takes responsibility for her team’s weaknesses and expresses a desire for change.

When Are You Happiest at Work?

A chef career can be fulfilling and inspiring, but not all kitchens provide the same opportunities. You will want to make sure that your candidate is a good fit for your restaurant’s culture and that he will feel engaged and motivated. When you ask your interviewee when he is most happy at work, you may honestly determine whether or not your job opening provides opportunities for job satisfaction.

Who Is Your Ideal Boss?

Your general manager and head chef must both possess the ability to work closely together in a high stress environment. Inviting your job applicant to describe her ideal boss shows how much support and feedback she requires and the style of leadership she best responds to. If her temperament does not mesh with that of your general manager, she may not be the best fit for your kitchen.

How Do You Handle Conflict?

Few work environments are as rife with the potential for conflict as a fast-paced kitchen. Anyone applying for leadership positions in the hospitality industry should be well aware of their strengths and weaknesses when it comes to conflict resolution. Beware of the applicant who does not have a ready answer to this chef interview question, as he may be more familiar with creating strife than managing it.


When preparing your questions for a chef interview, remember to start with clear expectations of who you’re hoping to bring on board. Whether you’re looking for a reliable leader, an imaginative creative, or someone to bring levity and joy to your kitchen, your interview questions can expose more than a resume will. Asking revealing questions will allow you to hire your next head chef with the confidence that she will be a perfect fit for your establishment.


About the author

Jakup Martini

Jakup Martini likes to quote the movie Ghostbusters in social settings... During the rectification of the Vuldronaii, the Traveler came as a large and moving Torb! Then, during the third reconciliation of the last of the Meketrex supplicants, they chose a new form for him - that of a giant Sloar! Many Shubs and Zuuls knew what it was to be roasted in the depths of a Sloar that day, I can tell you!


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