Overworked restaurant chefs reach boiling point

Two-thirds of Australian chefs say work-life balance ‘impossible’

Think all professional chefs enjoy great job satisfaction and lavish lifestyles away from the heat of the kitchen? Think again.

In reality, a quarter of Australian chefs (24%) work overtime at an average of 53 hours per week in the pressure-cooker atmosphere of the restaurant world, according to the latest research by social dining community, CHEFIN. More than half of chefs (54 per cent) feel they don’t have sufficient time to devote to their family, friends and personal commitments.

Work-life worries

It seems our overworked gastronomic gurus make plenty of other sacrifices. Twenty-nine per cent say they are too busy to take care of their diet, fitness and stress levels, 31 per cent have a minimal social life, and 17 per cent need to work multiple jobs to make a living.

The majority of chefs (66 per cent) also agree that work-life balance is an illusion, not a reality, while 73 per cent report constantly feeling like they’re racing against the clock.

Find the love

With these unhealthy ingredients forming a recipe for stress and frustration, CHEFIN Co-Founder Sukey Xu encourages chefs to rediscover that passion for cooking.

“Most chefs fell in love with cooking at some point in their lives. If working at intense commercial restaurants has become a burden instead of a joy, my advice would be to go back to their roots and cook creatively, cook when they feel inspired, and cook for people who appreciate their talents,” she said.

“That’s the benefit of being a private chef at dinner parties and special events. It’s a more intimate, authentic experience when you’re cooking in somebody’s home kitchen and creating your own amazing dishes.”

Interested in being a private chef? Contact CHEFIN and join the team for free.