When you decide to work as a chef for a catering company, you become an essential part of the company’s success and their clients’ satisfaction. Corporate events are the perfect setting for you to showcase your creativity and professionalism.
Corporate clients who are happy with the food generally require the company’s services again and again, whereas most private clients rarely have the budget necessary for repeat events. Breakfast catering requires therefore hard-working and talented individuals, able to ensure and interested in healthy eating and presentation of the highest quality.
The work schedule is usually Monday through Friday, though sometimes you may have to work on weekends and on holidays; typical work hours are those of breakfast and lunch. As a chef offering your services for a corporate catering event, you may be required to work on the client’s premises and prepare food in real time, so there’s no room for mistakes or delays in delivery. It is vital to research in advance and take into account the clients’ preferences and dietary requirements (vegetarian, gluten free, dairy free, skim milk or soy milk, sugar free, controlled calorie intake, alcohol free meals).
What it takes to be a corporate chef
For chefs, at least a high school diploma is required, although it is preferable that you hold a culinary degree (like an Associate’s degree in Culinary Arts) and have a couple of years of experience as a chef; catering or hotel and restaurant experience is also important, as is having sales experience. You must be able to follow recipes and improve them when necessary, and make large amounts of food in a given time without sacrificing the quality of your dishes. Basic computer skills, great verbal and written skills to ensure smooth communication with the catering team, and of course, desire to learn and grow professionally are other important requirements.
You might have an advantage over your competitors if you are familiarized with the Italian, French or exotic cuisine, or any other cuisine that is renowned worldwide for its savory meals. However, elaborate dishes are not always a must, sometimes clients value food that reminds them of their mother’s or grandmother’s dishes. Homemade food that looks appetizing is highly sought after these days, but aside from the presentation of the food, its quality and variety also matter.
If you are diligent about your job, you can grow professionally and in time hold a corporate dining account position, which means you will manage and supervise a team, and ensure that kitchen operations run smoothly. You will continue to be in charge of creating all menus, allowing room for the client to adapt them to their needs.