Chef Paul Gerard: WORK THE LINE

I’m working on the next installment of the Owning a Restaurant series right now. I’ll be going over the all too important process of finding and selecting the right location for your business.

In the meantime, I thought I’d share this video about Paul Gerard, a man with an unsurpassable drive and passion for working in kitchens. At the beginning of the video, you’ll see celebrity chefs Anthony Bourdain and Tom Colicchio asking themselves what is wrong with this guy?

Is seems Mr. Gerard works a breakfast shift at one restaurant, a lunch shift at another, and then finishes off with a dinner shift at a third restaurant. I agree with Tom and Anthony, this guy is crazy.

But it shows the passion and drive you’ll need to have to make your business successful.

I’ve had the privilege, especially recently, of working with some of the best upcoming chefs here in Houston. I can tell you, they’re all just like Gerard and they will be successful.

A quick word about chefs.

Within the many subcultures of the restaurant industry, there is a machismo and toughness that chefs and cooks (anyone on the kitchen crew, for that matter) are expected to have.

Most of the time the guys in the back of the house are very “TYPE A” personalities. They don’t mind getting cut, burned, bumped into, yelled at, or screamed at.

When I say “guys” I mean men and women. The women that I know who work on the kitchen lines are just as tough as the guys. You don’t want to get their bad side. Especially since they’re extremely proficient with knives.

And everyone else, too.

Towards the end of the video, you start to see just how fatigued these guys get. I once read that the average soccer player runs 11 miles per game. I would definitely say that the average restaurant employee travels the same distance during their shift, if not more. The next time you’re at a restaurant, take a look around and notice just how much walking the employees are doing.


And they’re doing it fast while carrying heavy trays. They do this for 8-12 hours a shift. I’d venture to say the stamina of a service industry employee can match that of a trained athlete.

I hope you watch the video more than once to get a feel for what to expect. Feel free to share or show this video and post to your employees, co-workers, and friends. Or show it to your family members who wonder why you come home late stressed out and dead tired.

Please contact me with ideas, questions, or if you’d like me to help  with any aspects of your business you feel you could improve.

Follow me at Serviceable for all the latest news and trends in the hospitality and service industries.

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