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Dallas Chef Ji Kang Dishes the TRUTH About Restaurant Labor Shortage

Dallas Chef Ji Kang dishes the TRUTH about Restaurant Labor Shortage - The Lone Star Plate Podcast
Home / Podcast / Episodes / Dallas Chef Ji Kang Dishes the TRUTH About Restaurant Labor Shortage

We have a special episode today with Chef Ji Kang, who is joining us to talk about the restaurant labor shortage and what’s really going on.  

Basically, people are saying that, because of stimulus checks and extended unemployment benefits, restaurant workers aren’t wanting to go back to work, and this has caused a labor shortage. So there are jobs, there are people to do the jobs, but they’re not going to, and it’s affecting the restaurant industry.  

Ji Kang is a friend of mine, and the executive chef at Sloane’s Corner in Downtown Dallas, and he has experienced the consequences of this labor shortage, and has come out of it with a few stories to share with us.  

We’re going to give you perspectives from employee to manager of why these problems are happening, and what we can do to fix them…

“If you want to keep people give them the respect that they need.” – Ji Kang  

Time Stamps:
10:49 – The increased demand for labor in restaurants, and the difficulty to hire more staff.
14:26 – The number of people in the restaurant industry who have shifted to other careers.
19:05 – What opportunities people get from being on unemployment.
22:03 – The importance of having a good reputation in the industry.
24:48 – The number of restaurants that are re-hiring their old staff, and the premium people are paying for cooks.
27:37 – Why having a good working atmosphere is crucial if you want to retain your staff.
38:28 – The transient nature of the restaurant industry and how Ji runs his back of house.
43:24 – What Ji looks for in a manager.
47:00 – The difficulties even the best restaurants are having of keeping staff.
50:38 – Which areas of the industry have been hit the hardest by the labour shortages.
52:18 – The signing bonuses that restaurants have started offering to new staff.
56:51 – The importance of loyalty and the how people often struggle to get time off.
1:05:55 – Why we need to have compassion for those working in the restaurant industry.  

Resources: 

Sloane’s Corner
Texas Real Food

Connect with Ji Kang:
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More From The Lone Star Plate:
Documentary on Restaurants Reopening During the Pandemic
Ji Kang: Make a Sloane’s Corner Dish at Home
Eric Silverstein of The Peached Tortilla: Surviving the Lockdown

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Episode 147