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Restaurant Manager - Training & Careers

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Restaurant-ManagementA great many people who have worked as chefs, servers, and bartenders at cafes, fine dining establishments, and hotels have thought they could do a better job than the person managing the business. Restaurant managers work under considerable stress, but the most successful ones enjoy great salaries, prestige, and the pride of seeing their establishments thrive and prosper.

While many experienced food and beverage workers move up into management positions, it is the specially trained professional with bachelor’s or an associate degree in restaurant and institutional food service management that has the best chance to take on the role in today's highly competitive dining industry.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there will be strong growth in the profession through the end of the decade, with most jobs going to managers in larger companies to run multi-outlet restaurants. For a top-level job with an elite eatery, you'll probably need to enter a college or training program.

Preparing for Restaurant Management

The BLS reports that restaurant managers held more than 386,000 jobs in 2002. Restaurant managers can be called upon to oversee the menu, wrangle complicated budgets, and interview, hire, train, (and occasionally) discharge employees. Restaurant managers may need to know the latest trends in food preparation, ingredients buying, and bookkeeping software. Many restaurants use order-tracking and employee-scheduling computer programs.

Many trade schools, community colleges, and universities offer 2 or 4-year programs in restaurant and hotel management, or in institutional food service management. Fine dining establishments and well-known national chains are especially looking for restaurant management graduates from these programs. You can expect to take classes in accounting, business law, nutrition, and sanitation regulations.

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