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How do I know if I should commit to a career?

I want to be a chef, and maybe open my own restaurant but how do I know if it's right for me? I don't want to be miserable.

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Joffrey’s Answer

You will want to get experience, a lot of it, in the restaurant and outside of it (business, handyman etc etc) and guts, lots of it too !
Best of luck.
I’m myself a pastry chef with about 16yrs of xp, it was hard, some rough time. But I have now a job that I love.
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Robert’s Answer

Begin by securing a job in the industry. Be ready to dedicate over 60 hours a week for at least a year. Absorb all the knowledge you can about your workplace. This includes everything from understanding how to dismantle the dishwasher, to operating a fryer, to relighting an oven pilot light, and getting to know the ins and outs of the kitchen. Understand that if you're not feeling overwhelmed, you've only scratched the surface of what owning your own establishment entails. It's not unusual for an owner to clock in a hundred hours a week, given that they're responsible for staff management, ordering supplies, paying bills, and ensuring product and service quality. This isn't meant to discourage you, but to provide a clear picture of what owning your own place requires. Best of luck!
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Michel’s Answer

With any career, there are going to be periods of happiness and periods of misery. Go to college for something else and have a back up plan if Chef life doesn’t work out. Additionally, spend time exploring and staging before you make the jump into it. I highly discourage opening a restaurant early in your career. Wait until you have experience And perspective.
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Vivian’s Answer

Do you love cooking?if yes this could be the right direction for you.We always get satisfied and have fun when we do what we love.Examine yourself by reflecting on your motivation,think about your long term goals and explore the sector whereby you can talk to a chef who is already in the field to know what they do.Explore industries to know which path you will take after your studies and seek out professional resources.
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Adrienne’s Answer

That's a great question. You can ask an owner of a restaurant that is something like the one you want to open can you job shadow the chef at the restaurant for a few weeks. Maybe for a few hours out of the day.
This will give you a good idea on what chefs do.
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Fabrice’s Answer

All great answers! I imagine you are probably very young and if you are anything like me, not sure what to do with your life. I was thrown into the restaurant works at 15 years old, a bit because of a lack of options! But that was in France and a different era.
So, first indeed, do you have passion for food and cooking? Are you a smart individual? Hard working? Will you be willing to work 60 hours a week minimum for way less money than a plumber might make? You see, if passion leads you, may be! But be practical about it, talk to as many professionals as possible. Learn about business, I fail my own business because, while I was a good chef, I was a terrible business owner! Be curious, investigate other food business venture, there is something out there for everybody but remember, not everyone has what it takes to be a business owner and that is quite alright!
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Katrina’s Answer

Hi Arum,
That is a very good question indeed. Definitely reach out to both a restaurant owner and a chef
and ask about shadowing them for a few days, to get a feel for their day to day. Also, if you can volunteer at a restaurant for a few hours (if that fits into your schedule) you can get some hands-on experience and see all the different elements in action. A behind the scenes perspective.
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Albert’s Answer

The key is to immerse yourself in the industry. Connect with local chefs and restaurant proprietors to see if they might allow you to observe their daily operations and provide valuable insights. They might even become ongoing mentors for you. If you're old enough to start working, try to get a job in a restaurant as soon as possible to kickstart your career. Personally, I find the work incredibly rewarding, largely because of my deep love for food and the restaurant business, which helps me overlook any negatives. If you're interested in owning a restaurant, it's crucial to understand business. This knowledge can be self-taught or acquired through a college course, but having a business acumen is absolutely essential.
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Howard’s Answer

You already hit the nail on the head. You do not want to be miserable in any job or career you want to succeed at. Get an entry-level position at a restaurant or hotel. Work there for a few weeks or months. That will tell you if you like it or not. You have to want it and you have to ask questions and learn as much as you can about your job to be good. Only do something that makes you happy or that you enjoy doing. If you find that you will be successful. Good luck.
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