Career Detail

Restaurant & Catering Managers
“Fine Dining”
Food service managers are responsible for the daily operations of restaurants and other establishments that prepare and serve meals and beverages to customers.
The Job
Besides coordinating activities among various departments, such as kitchen, dining room, and banquet operations, restaurant and food catering managers ensure that customers are satisfied with their dining experience. In addition, they oversee the inventory and ordering of food, equipment, and supplies and arrange for the routine maintenance and upkeep of the restaurant's equipment and facilities. Managers generally are responsible for all of the administrative and human-resource functions of running the business, including recruiting new employees and monitoring employee performance and training. They make sure that health and safety standards and local liquor regulations are obeyed. In most full-service restaurants and institutional food service facilities, the management team consists of a general manager, one or more assistant managers, and an executive chef.
Work Environment
Managers often experience the pressures of simultaneously coordinating a wide range of activities. The work place can get hectic and the manager must keep things running smoothly.
College Majors
restaurant and hospitality management, institutional food service management, business administration
Minimum Qualifications
More than 40 percent of food service managers have a high school diploma or less; less than one-quarter have a bachelor's or graduate degree. However, a degree is preferred by higher end full-service restaurants and for many corporate positions.
Personality traits helpful for this career
Managers should be calm, flexible, and able to work through emergencies,
Quick Facts
  • Experience as a waiter or waitress, cook, or counter help is the most common way to enter the occupation.
  • A college degree also is beneficial for those who want to own or manage their own restaurant.
  • In addition to receiving typical benefits, most salaried food service managers are provided free meals and the opportunity for additional training.
  • Long hours-12 to 15 per day, 50 or more per week, and sometimes 7 days a week-are common.
  • More Info: National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, Internet:
Compensation and Outlook
Median annual wages of salaried food service managers were $46,320 in May 2008. The middle 50 percent earned between $36,670 and $59,580. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $29,450, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $76,940.
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