At Red Lobster, we pride ourselves on providing our teams with the training and tools they need to be RL Great! Anthony Jones, a Culinary Manager at our Springfield, PA location, has benefited first hand from resources since he joined the Lobster team in 2012. Happy to explain how our methods have led to his success, Anthony sat down for a Q&A with us:
What does a Culinary Manager at Red Lobster do? Day-to-day, my duties are running a smooth kitchen; that includes helping with hiring, overseeing waste control and productivity, assisting other managers with their responsibilities, and sales and ordering.
How would you describe your training? My training started from day one. I started as a Dishwasher and I was very lucky to have a great General Manager who believes in “One Red Lobster” and that if you work hard, you get rewarded. He sat down with me my second month here and asked if I had an interest in becoming a Manager, and that’s when the training started. As a crew member I started helping with higher level tasks, and from there I naturally moved into a Culinary Restaurant Supervisor role, then into a Manager role.
I went through the Manager-in-Training program, which helps solidify knowledge of the systems that I didn’t previously have access to, such as the ordering system and the hiring system. In a less technical sense, managers are also trained to understand that everyone has value in a different area. As a leader, you should develop their strengths to help them grow and help the team succeed.
Red Lobster is 100% corporate owned which means all restaurants have the same systems and processes in place. What is your favorite process that helps make your job better? The best system is the way our kitchen is set up. Red Lobster has given us a system that makes it very attainable to run the kitchen efficiently. My first six months as Culinary Manager I ran under 3% waste which put me easily in the top 1% of the whole company. As a result, we were recognized with the Lighthouse Club Award, a distinction for high-performing restaurants.
There’s also our online portal for employees—it has videos you can watch for training, online menu systems, and the best thing is when you’re looking for something, and you’re not sure if it’s a standard process or procedure, they make it easy for you to find an answer with the search feature. All materials are readily available in an organized and easy-to-navigate system.
What are some of the main benefits of using these? I’m thankful to know Red Lobster took the time to set everything up. The online portal is a huge asset I haven’t experienced at any other job. For our kitchen, without seeing areas of opportunity, managers couldn’t be as successful or identify areas to improve. The data history we can access is also helpful. There’s data going back years that allows you to be more accurate in projecting future success. Some companies don’t give that information to Managers, but Red Lobster thinks of you as a partner in the business. It really gives you a sense of pride.
Feel prepared to achieve success through Red Lobster’s processes as a manager when you join our team today!