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The World’s Best Restaurant, Eleven Madison Park has no shortage of candidates vying for one of 150 kitchen roles and 70 front of house and that number will be increasing when the team, led by Will Guidara and chef Daniel Humm heads back to the Hamptons for another pop-up this summer and later in the year to Aspen.
But just what are the Make it Nice team (Eleven Madison Park, the NoMad) looking for when they’re hiring? In a revealing chat at the Identita Golose chef’s congress in Milan, which this year took the ‘Human Factor,’ as its theme, Guidara spoke about the four essential qualities they look for in a front of house candidate:
Hospitality can’t be taught,” says Guidara, “there is a nobility in kindness.” You must able to deal with conflict with “humility and grace.” The only thing that matters is that the customer leaves happy.
They are looking for nothing less than perfection, but kindness and excellence don’t go “hand in hand,” he says.
3. Willingness to Learn
The team have worked hard to create a culture at the restaurant where learning is one of the benefits of the job.
Of course, this goes without saying.
Will Guidara (left)
A job interview, Guidara says, is “like a first date,” while the resume is almost irrelevant – they want to get a feel for you as a person and it’s worth noting that every single manager started as a food runner. Guidara says he never wanted to be a chef and always wanted to be in the dining room. "Connections with guests restore me, he says. "Service is more noble than just serving food. We take a meal and turn it into an experience – we create magic."