Every day, hundreds of Australians in Sidney flock the Tasmania Pizza Restaurant. The service, food, hospitality, and the ambience is breath taking that one forgets the daily hassles. The person behind the management of this classic restaurant is Catherine "Kathy" Kay, a 30 year-old Nutrition graduate from University of Wales.

Miss Kay and Her Career

Kathy says that she was interested in cooking ever since she was 12 years. "I loved cooking pancakes, cup cakes and even baked a birthday cake for my brother, Paul. However, the greatest thing that spurred her into the Nutrition career was a personality test. "I realized that I will perfectly fit into the hospitality industry," says Kathy with a grin.
After graduating from the School of Catering from the University of Wales, she worked as a clerk in a nearby Pizza Hut and rose through the management ranks. This is what launched her career. She left, Pizza Hut after five years and went to Australia to manage the Tasmania Pizza Restaurant.

Her greatest challenge in this place is designing a restaurant that helps in building sales. "People love dining out. They are looking for a value for their money and their health and keeping the business up this standard is a grueling challenge." However, I have managed to work with the crew, built a culinary expertise and that is what has made us to be successful. Building relationships with the guests is also important. This is one of the major ways of building sales. Our guests are encouraged to spend money on dinner. Visits from previous guests are tracked and we correspond with them through newsletters and e-mails. "Special cooking classes and local promotions have also encouraged people to dine in our restaurant. These classes help them to know what and how their food is cooked.

Responsibilities of a Restaurant Manager

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"I delegate almost all the duties and make sure that everything is its place. Some of the responsibilities include delegating accounts, supplies, keeping the restaurant clean and fresh." What are the most important skills for a restaurant manager like you? The most important skills are personality, patience, and good organization," says Kathy. This is a business where you interact directly with people. The turn-around time for a guest can only be shortened by a memorable experience. In addition to that, discipline is a virtue that should be embraced by all the crew. There has to be a basic process in place to aid in the running of this place. To be a manager, one has to be passionate about the job, love people and food.

Finally, Kathy would like to advice to persons who are interested in being restaurant managers. A person who has never worked in a restaurant cannot manage a restaurant. It needs a hands-on experience, which is very vital. It is also essential that a person aspiring to be a manager should have a mentor. Kathy encourages people to set up dates of appointment with general managers of restaurants. This will give someone an experience on how to start and prosper in this career. A couple of hours at a restaurant will help a person to know if they are making the right choice. If you observe all restaurant operations in detail, you will know what you want to be.

The Hospitality Industry has one of the highest turnover rates in terms of labor. Kathy attributes this to the high demands of the job although it is easy for a graduate to find a job at any level. Any time around the year, there is always a vacancy at one level or the other and this is what makes this industry to be very marketable. Kathy says, "In the near future, from the labor perspective, there will be no enough graduates to fill this industry." I therefore advise students to take up courses in this industry because one can never miss a job!

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