Experiencing you experiencing us
People walk into Wandering Cooks looking for a job quite often these days. The more considered of them often send us an email, too. Either way, they come equipped with cvs to do their explaining:
I have 20 years of experience in hospitality here, here, here, here and here (so I know what I’m doing).
Sure, someone with a lot of experience will give me pause.
I’ll think, wow! that’s a long time in hospitality.
But then I remember my own experiences and start to wonder…
I have enough experience in philosophy to have a PhD in it, but would I make a dreadful philosophy teacher? Most definitely. 25 years in hospitality, but I cringe when I think back to the way I did the jobs I did just 10 years ago. 43 years of being an introvert but only 5 years at being proud of it. 25 years of being a drinker but only four at truly tasting.
The process of hiring begins when a person decides they don’t just want a job, they want us – they want in. That way, we begin on the basis that they have experienced us; that they already know what we care about, and I can presume (with more likelihood of being right), that they will care about the same things, too.
So when I ask them questions, I want to find out, what was this person like while they were gaining their years of experience elsewhere?
Were they clocking in and out? learning to get away with the bare minimum? were they pushing the edges of their learning? training to become better? winning awards for the people they worked for? putting their workplace before their own egos? standing on others to build their cvs? Have they gotten softer, or stronger? Can they deal with messiness? failure?
My preferred way to engage staff is over time, for their experiences to form with us. Same person, various jobs, every day, again and again. They show up today to show us what they can do tomorrow. Experience rolling out in real time. cv long forgotten.