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Old 01-07-2012, 08:57 AM   #26
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OH! and one day we were in full dress uniform(oy!) and I forgot my name tag, and they made me go home and get it. So I had to give up my parking spot, in a neighborhood with no parking to go and get a name tag when we weren't even open.

So when I was home, I returned a few calls about other jobs and one of those turned out to be the one that i quit for.
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Old 01-07-2012, 08:58 AM   #27
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You dont work at Cactus for the money, you work there to bang hot chicks.
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Old 01-07-2012, 10:16 AM   #28
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I had no idea cooks were paid so little! IMO, you guys deserve more than the servers.

How do servers get paid in tips? Is it hourly like cooks or do they get a percentage of the nights tips?
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Old 01-07-2012, 10:26 AM   #29
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Servers have to pay out 4% of their total sale to the kitchen. So they get minimum wage plus the rest of the tips after paying the 4%.
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Old 01-07-2012, 10:34 AM   #30
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Damn, i actually love working here, just when i start feeling the load of work i have to do and realize im only getting paid 11 bucks i start feeling fed up with all of it lol... like i'm sure being trained for everything in the restaurant already and now if i were to apply at a different location i'm sure they'd start me off at my wage at the moment of 11 dollars but only 1 station...... with increases as i begin to take the same role as i did in the current restaurant

also thinking if i should just wait till the minimum wage increase happens before i ask for a raise.. since the single station people dishwashers etc will all be making 10.25 [no offense to them, just the starters will be making 10.25] and as a "KM" i would be worth more.. like example they are being paid like 9.50 now? so im worth 1.50 more atm... so after the increase i should still be worth at lease a 1.50 more so should still get a "crappy i guess?" increase to 12.50....
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Old 01-07-2012, 10:52 AM   #31
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i used to work at boston pizza in late high school, so 7 or so years ago. i was paid minimum wage (or a bit more) at around $9. i also got tips that we split amongst the kitchen staff, which were about $150 a month or per paycheck. i think per month. i only worked part time with not many days so that was decent for me at the time. i believe min wage was 6.50 about to rise to 8. i had absolutely no certified training and dont even have my foodsafe despite having worked in bp, mcdonalds and the sfu pub. yup fucked up.

if i remember correctly (and this is mostly speculation and of course was seven years ago), kms were making i would say $13 an hour plus some nicer cuts of the tip pool. at mcdonalds i believe equivalent of km position also gets u around $13 so this makes sense.

when i worked at te sfu pub in early university also part time as a side job it was different. there everyone who was a line cook was certified and took culinary school and passed. so they were chefs and were probably makig at least $13. i think i was a shit prep cook with no certification and they paid me more than $10 at a time when minimum wage was at 8.50. a lotta the guys left after finding jobs at a restaurant that was more reputable for their resume. one guy left for lumiere!

op: my only advice for you is to change your attitude and try shopping around. if they dont pay u someone else will. do not ever everrrr let the "i love the people here" angle hold you back - u will meet good ppl wherever u go.
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Old 01-07-2012, 11:15 AM   #32
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I had no idea cooks were paid so little! IMO, you guys deserve more than the servers.

How do servers get paid in tips? Is it hourly like cooks or do they get a percentage of the nights tips?
+1 kitchen staff at the restaurant I worked at made at most half as much as the servers on average, I'm not a particularly generous tipper and I think it's BS that a 10% tip is not only expected as a minimum but considered inferior by so many servers, IMO a tip should never be expected and is supposed to be a reward for excellence (not adequacy)

Rarely do you see kitchen staff brag about how it's a chill job and if you've ever been to physio you do see a lot of chefs etc. It breaks my heart every time I think about it but my friend who became the sous chef/kitchen manager hung himself after 2 years of that job, he was ~22 at the time ;(
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Old 01-07-2012, 11:48 AM   #33
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+1 kitchen staff at the restaurant I worked at made at most half as much as the servers on average, I'm not a particularly generous tipper and I think it's BS that a 10% tip is not only expected as a minimum but considered inferior by so many servers, IMO a tip should never be expected and is supposed to be a reward for excellence (not adequacy)

Rarely do you see kitchen staff brag about how it's a chill job and if you've ever been to physio you do see a lot of chefs etc. It breaks my heart every time I think about it but my friend who became the sous chef/kitchen manager hung himself after 2 years of that job, he was ~22 at the time ;(
That Gordon Ramsey, "fuck you!" attitude is huge in cooking. It's hugely competitive, and for every chef at Lumiere there are 500 guys out there slinging shit on white plates for crap money.

I was, at one point considering going to school for cooking, and make it my profession. I talked to a line cook, and he said to me, "I wish I had done better in school, so I wouldn't have to do this shit for the rest of my life." and it was a huge conversation for me.

I did do well in school, and from that point on, anything I did with food was to make it so I never had to sling shit on white plates.
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Old 01-07-2012, 12:48 PM   #34
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Yeah... I also did go to school for this too, but that was fresh outta high school, made a decision to pursue something more ahhh why is life so full of "all about money" lol

as Young MC says "Got no money, got no car, then you got no woman and there you are"
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Old 01-07-2012, 12:53 PM   #35
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when i worked the Yaletown milestones as a pantry line cook, i was getting $13/hr plus tips

On busy nights, like hockey games and concerts, we easily hit 40K+ during night service, and the tips were really good, i got as much as $400+ for every 2 weeks
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Old 01-07-2012, 01:55 PM   #36
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yot im in the exact same position as you are >.< pm me to talk if you want
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Old 01-07-2012, 02:08 PM   #37
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in my opinion, the wage you guys get isn't worth all the shit and stress you have to deal with in a restaurant. one of my buddies was coach at earls and ended up losing some hair for a while haha
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Old 01-07-2012, 02:44 PM   #38
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I'd say its cactus considering the amount of sales on during this time of the year. They are notorious for paying low wages to their cooks.
wut?

considering they start they're dishwashers at 11. Cactus never cheaps out on employees atleast not the one i work at.

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Old 01-07-2012, 05:49 PM   #39
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I slaved in the kitchens for 4 yrs and worked my way up from a mom and pop pizza store to a decent Yaletown restaurant. Then I saw the light and went FOH as a server and made way more money with way less stress. It's appalling how bad the BOH get screwed in terms of work to pay, ratio.
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Old 01-07-2012, 05:58 PM   #40
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Joey Broadway - 10.25 starting pay i believe for line cook
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Old 01-07-2012, 06:06 PM   #41
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I worked at white spot for $9.50/hour, never work there again place was the biggest pile of shit.
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Old 01-07-2012, 06:17 PM   #42
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I worked at white spot for $9.50/hour, never work there again place was the biggest pile of shit.
funny part is i know who you are and which one you worked at

for what you did thats more than you deserved
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Old 01-07-2012, 06:22 PM   #43
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Holy fuck popcorn.jpg

Explain please
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Old 01-07-2012, 07:46 PM   #44
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All these posts are stirring up old memories.

When somebody, typically FOH staff, asks "May I speak?" to BOH, it's out of respect. As in, "Hey, I know you may be busy. Do you have a second?". It's not limited to Cactus Club, we did it at Earls too. I know this for a fact because I knew somebody else early in my Earls career who had in the past worked at another Earls, and she mentioned the whole "May I speak" thing being used too. It's not meant to piss off the guy you're asking. It's certainly not because somebody drank some "corporate kool-aid" either. You're welcome to say "Not right now" if they ask you; I know I have. The kitchen is a very high stress environment, and some FOH noobs don't know how to properly talk to BOH.

I feel like I should elaborate more on what I said earlier, about the people being the best part of the job. I met what I consider to be some of the most hardworking, consistent, patient people in my life in that kitchen. These are people that maybe if you saw them on the street, you would think he's a lazy asshole who has no work ethic and spends his day smoking up while on the XBOX. No. Couldn't be further from the truth. These are guys that inspired in me the strong work ethic that I now have. To be able to honestly say to myself, "I'm giving my all. I'm not letting standards falter because it's busy as fuck. I care about the work before me". I have a lot of respect for these guys, because they had the class and the tenacity to keep this shit real. I am not ashamed to say these are people who can work 10x harder than me on my best day, every damn shift.

Work ethic, attention to detail, awareness and adherence to standards - that all comes from the top. The leadership has to promote that in his kitchen leaders. His leaders need to make sure it makes it down the line. I don't know if I was lucky or not, but I worked in a kitchen where the head chef's voice echoed down the line. It was clear, he didn't stand for laziness or none of that BS. Sadly, he left the position as he was promoted to corporate, and we were sacked with a younger head chef who didn't promote the same ideals or ethic. Guess what happened? He got not respect, and he lost the leaders in his kitchen, 1 by 1. Before you knew it, every new guy who came in knew less and less.

My original head chef, do you know what he did? When us recruits first started out, he spent the time out of his day just to show us small details like how to properly iron our uniforms. He spent time in the dish pit showing us how to wash dishes, load the washing machine, etc. That's character. He could've stuck some other guy to teach us, but no, he did it himself. For you current and ex-Earls BOH, that's Reuben Major I'm talking about.

As for the FOH vs BOH tip scale. My god how true it is. BOH gets stuck with the heat of the kitchen, the stress, and the odd customer requests. I can count on multiple occasions having to do the following because a customer requested it:
-calamari, no tentacles
-wings, only drums
-making items that haven't been on the menu in like 2 years
-etc

^that's just bottom end stuff, and I KNOW i'm missing a lot more odd/weird/time-consuming customer requests. The FOH server happily smiles while taking that order, we as BOH have to execute it. Doesn't matter that we're 5-10 minutes behind already on all our bill times, it gets rung in, we have to STFU and do it. FOH slips once or twice on customer service, but we as BOH execute to a GOD DAMN tee every detail of that order, we get shafted in tips. No biggie for the server at FOH, she already made 90% tips on all her tables throughout the night. They still walk away with more money in tips for 1 night than I get in 1 month. Not to mention BOH takes out the garbage every night, BOH stays till 1:30, 2, even 2:30 AM in the morning cleaning up while still in our sweaty uniforms.

You want to know how we can change the restaurant business for the better? By having separate food and customer service tips. The customer can tip exactly what they feel should go to the cooks, and exactly what the server should get. BOH should not suffer when they break their backs on orders, all because FOH couldn't get their act together.

/RANT
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Old 01-07-2012, 08:22 PM   #45
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wut?

considering they start they're dishwashers at 11. Cactus never cheaps out on employees atleast not the one i work at.
same here..when i was at cacti a few years back i was paid well i thought...but back then they started our washers off at 9
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Old 01-07-2012, 08:44 PM   #46
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All these posts are stirring up old memories.

When somebody, typically FOH staff, asks "May I speak?" to BOH, it's out of respect. As in, "Hey, I know you may be busy. Do you have a second?". It's not limited to Cactus Club, we did it at Earls too. I know this for a fact because I knew somebody else early in my Earls career who had in the past worked at another Earls, and she mentioned the whole "May I speak" thing being used too. It's not meant to piss off the guy you're asking. It's certainly not because somebody drank some "corporate kool-aid" either. You're welcome to say "Not right now" if they ask you; I know I have. The kitchen is a very high stress environment, and some FOH noobs don't know how to properly talk to BOH.


/RANT
Dude...I totally get where you are coming from.

That whole "May I speak thing", I totally get. You're in the middle of doing something and some new guy comes running up and pounding his fist that the salad he forgot to place the order for needs to be ready 10 minutes ago and starts yelling into the kitchen.

The point with this little 4' bitch was she made it a corporate kool-aid moment. She was standing there looking off into the lounge and I had a quick question, and she turns it into, "non non non, en francais, sil vous plait" moment wagging her finger in my face.

I have never enjoyed having a corporate vulture forced upon me. I didn't at Cactus and I didn't again at another job having to spend 2 full business days being endoctrinated into their way of life, when all of us had worked for the company for up to the previous 8 years since they bought the company.

I don't know, call me a mal-content, but its just me. Corporate culture is something that grows.

I hugely respect people that are of the attitude that they'll do what it takes to get the job done, such as your head chef teaching dishpit protocol. Myself, I own a small reno company, and I don't ask people to do things that I haven't done, and aren't willing to do myself. And if someone's doing some shit work for awhile, I make sure to give him something interesting to do, or something you can turn into a break as a 'reward'.

But if someone whines about hard work, I make sure to tell him about the day I worked 24 hours straight to finish a project on time...
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Old 01-07-2012, 08:46 PM   #47
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Oh...and Cactus Club was started with Earl's money, so they are literally joined at the hip. If you see overlap, its there by design.
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Old 01-07-2012, 08:51 PM   #48
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At first, I read "dishpit protocol" as "dipshit protocol", and I was like "...wtf did i do?".
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Old 01-07-2012, 09:33 PM   #49
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I'm not gonna lie, but I kinda feel sorry for some of your guy's kitchen experiences.

I work at the Keg. Started there 3 years ago at $12/hr. got a raise to $13 after 3 months. Another 6 months down the road, raise to $14. Didn't really focus my time there for the next year and a half because of school and finding another kitchen to work in (for the experience). After that, I ended up having to go to a different Keg because of some disagreements with my KM, and got a raise to $15/hr at the new Keg. It doesn't even matter how busy we get, it's still enjoyable to work in. Maybe because I want to be in this industry, but it largely has to do with the team I work with.

Those who think that you need to be a KM figure to start making the $17/hr, i'm sorry but its not necessarily true. The key point that those who are interested, need to understand, that its LARGELY dependant on the restaurant that you work for. I know guys on that line that make around $18 and up, yet they aren't KM. They help keep things positive and running on the line, but it's also because of their performance for the stations.

From what I can recall, servers do get taxed on their tips. I could be wrong, but thats what I recall.

With tip pool, again, it is dependant on the restaurant and the breakdown. I average around $5/hr in tips. On a slower night, maybe $3.50-$4/hr.

I do agree with view towards servers about how tipping isn't a requirement, but dependant on their performance. Keep in mind, servers dont ALWAYS walk away with money earned. I've seen nights where they go home losing money, because their tables didn't tip enough for them to pay the tip pool.

Back to OP's original question, I do agree that your wage is significantly low for a KM, and you should definitely talk about getting a raise. But keep in mind what restaurant it is, and how far you can really push that raise.
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Old 01-08-2012, 12:36 AM   #50
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yeah sigh... just finished a 8 hour shift, 2 of those hours i ran the line completely on my own to save the business some money cause im more then capable of handling the line when its dead in the last 2 hrs before closing... and then volunteering 15 mins of my time just cause i felt bad that my dishwasher was still in pretty bad shape just so he could leave with me.. all for my weak pay
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