Personal Chef Work Is Mental
There is a lot of work and organization around compiling and maintaining your recipe collection, learning and managing clients’ special diets, and improving your cooking knowledge. Some clients eat the same things all the time. Some clients want different things every single time.
I’ve had a client for about 10 years that gets the same two soups every single week. And generally the other entrees are also things they’ve had over and over.
You might think that’s boring, but they know what they like. I’ve had clients pay me to make sandwiches. I’ve had clients pay for me to make dishes following the ‘raw diet’.
That’s right, they paid me NOT to cook. As long as they’re happy that’s all that matters.
You don’t necessarily need to manage what your clients want to eat, and definitely don’t argue with them, unless they’re doing something that’s unsafe like keeping the food too long.
One thing you will need to do is manage clients’ kitchens, packaging, and your own equipment.
Another is you need to know or learn where the best places to shop for groceries are and shop efficiently. Multiple grocery store trips are a reality of Personal Chef life. You can learn some insider tips for the grocery store in my free guide here.
Finally, you need manage all aspects of your business from day to day bookkeeping, filing taxes and other business requirements, to marketing which can include networking, maintaining your website, social media, business cards etc.
Personal Chef Work Is Physical
There can be a lot of crap to haul, depending on how efficient you pack. And of course you need to stand for hours and cook. You need to clean the kitchen afterwards.
Company Size and Coworkers
You are a solopreneur as they say when you a one woman show. Of course you can always hire part-time support like a bookkeeper, accountant, attorney, marketing support, kitchen cleaning help, staff for catering etc.
Other people who I consider support staff are any vendors I buy from. This is everyone from the grocery store manager, butcher, seafood manager, produce manager, venue staff, etc.
The more you build relationships with these people the smoother your job will be and the better your client’s experience with you will be.
What Does A Personal Chef Do In An Average Week?
You will talk to upcoming clients for the week and get their menu selections. Then you pull the recipes and do the labels, grocery list, invoice, and any other paperwork needed.
On each client’s cook day, you load any equipment you need, do the grocery shopping for what you’ll be cooking, go the client’s home and cook their menu. Cool, package and store their food however they would like it. Clean up and get paid.
At the end of each day, or however you want to do it, you’d make your deposit and then enter your expenses and deposit into however you’re keeping your accounting.
Some days you field phone calls and emails from prospective clients. You meet with them to discuss their needs and your services, and then schedule their cook days.
Where Does A Personal Chef Work?
You can work anywhere from the client’s home, to an onsite location.
You’d do your paperwork in your home office. Even if that’s the kitchen table.
According to PayScale, job satisfaction for Personal Chefs is surveyed as a 5 out of 5! A perfect score.
Of course it is!
First, you’re doing the thing you’re most passionate about, cooking.
And second, people are paying you for it. Paying you well.
And of course I’m biased! I work when I want, for whom I want, take time off when I want, and I spend all the time I want with my husband and kids.
You can read more about how I became a Personal Chef here.