A career in catering can be quite rewarding and lucrative. If you are interested in this career track, you will need to develop a knowledge base of how to prepare and serve large amounts of food during special events and conferences. You will also need a strong foundation in business practice so that you know how to run a business successfully. Here are some tips to help you train for a catering career.
First, you should have experience working in the catering business. A good way to start is as a server for a catering company. This will give you a familiarity with the process of serving and preparing food for events. It will also allow you to interact with customer and clients as well as watch how your manager or the owner handles situations and remains professional. You can gain a lot of hands on experience from a catering job as a waiter if you express interest in learning the business from the inside out.
Over time you will need to develop a wide range of skills in the catering business if you would like to make it your career. You will need to learn to create menus, draw up contracts for clients, ensure that food is handled legally and up to code, market for your catering business to attract attention, and oversee staff in a managerial role. In some cases, these skills can be learned on the job if you have a boss who is wiling to allow you to work almost in an intern type role.
While not necessary, some individuals choose to go to a traditional school to pursue their catering career and get a strong basis and experience in the business. These programs in catering, the culinary arts, or hospitality will not only teach you about the food part of catering but also about the business managing skills. You will develop your abilities and understanding of the culinary arts so that you are able to cook and prepare menus properly. You will also gain experience with safety procedures and nutrition. This is often a great way to jumpstart your career, develop authentic experience, and even gain some helpful contacts.
Once you have worked with a caterer or attended a school, you will need to also get your catering license. This is necessary if you are planning to open your own catering business. The licensure assures the public that your business provides a food service that is safe and sanitary as well as up to code according to the Department of Health.
A career as a catering professional will allow you to pursue your passion of hosting wonderful events and preparing excellent quality food to clients and their guests. If you are interested in this career choice, it is helpful to gain hands on experience in the industry with a company such as Martin’s Caterers. You may also consider getting a degree in the catering field such as a hospitality or culinary art degree. These steps will ensure that you are well prepared to handle both the food and business sides of the industry effectively and successfully.