What is it like to work as a restaurant or pub manager?

Steph  Baker our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 25 August 2020

Would you describe yourself as driven, friendly or perhaps a multitasker? Maybe you’re the go-to person in your friend group for organising get togethers, or perhaps you’re famous for your Hollywood film-worthy pep talks. If you tick any of these boxes, you might make a great restaurant or pub manager. But what will the average day look like and what can you expect to be thrown at you on your shift? Take a look below at the rundown of what it’s like to work as a restaurant or pub manager. Spoiler alert – you won’t actually get anything thrown at you.

You get to bring out the best in your team

Did you know that 9 in 10 managers started their hospitality career in an entry-level role? As a general manager, you’ll be the key piece in the puzzle, helping to build a business to be proud of and being there every step of the way as your team grows and smashes targets. Remember that manager who always recognised when you went the extra mile for a guest and never failed to sing your praises? Well now it’s your chance to do the same, only this time for your own team. The satisfaction you’ll get from helping apprentices find their feet will (almost) compare to the joy of eating a Toby Carvery roast.

You gain a work family

If you thrive in a fast-paced environment and love nothing more than working around other people, then a restaurant or pub manager job will be right up your street. The moment you step through the doors you’ll learn to embrace your second job title – Head of the Work Family. You’ll keep your team safe and remind them why they love coming to work every day, serving up positive vibes with a side of banter. So maybe you’ll get a reputation for your cringe jokes but your team wouldn’t have you any other way. Plus, positive work cultures are more productive meaning you’ll get to see your staff shine as bright as the wine glasses they’re polishing.

You’re the friendly face that greets the guests

What’s better than being known as the person who makes everyone feel welcome? Well, getting to do it each day as part of your job is the real cherry on top. You’ll greet every guest with one of your award-winning smiles and make them feel instantly at home so that every visit is as special as the last. Whether you’re managing a restaurant, pub or bar, great customer experience is one of your top priorities. As a manager, when you’re not helping your team or checking that every meal is plated to perfection you get the pleasure of catching up with the regulars.

You’ll wear many hats

Do you like a job where you have to think on your feet? Whether you take on a general manager or assistant manager role, you’ll act as the go-between, keeping the waiting staff, bar staff and the kitchen team all working in sync and making sure service is seamless so that no one has to go without their chocolate fudge cake. If your friends and family would describe you as the glue that holds everyone together then this part of the job will be second nature to you.

Even though you’ll have to think on your feet, don’t be fooled into believing you’ll be rushed off them all day. Working as a manager at Mitchells & Butlers, you’ll find yourself making last-minute reservations for our guests organising rotas, handling customer enquiries and showing off how business-minded you are when completing your sales reports. And if you give it your all when wearing each of your hats, you might just have what it takes to become an area manager.

Find your next restaurant and pub manager job with us

At Mitchells & Butlers, the sky is the limit when it comes to your career because working with us is about more than just a job. We have 13 brands and over 1,600 businesses across the UK and we believe in investing in our colleagues. Whether serving up steaks at Miller & Carter or finding the perfect table for guests at Premium Country Pubs, you'll get to flex all your skills and pick up more as you go. If you bring the can-do attitude, we’ll provide the support and award-winning training to help you reach your ambitions. 

Make sure to sign up to job alerts so your the first to know  about our next assistant manager or general manager opportunity.


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When you think of a pub and restaurant job you probably first imagine a chef in their white hat – or toque if we’re being fancy. But of course, there are also the waiters and waitresses, bar staff and general managers who are delivering excellent customer service whilst busying themselves behind the scenes too.To help you decide which restaurant job is right for you we’ve put together the different ingredients for success you’ll need for each role. Read on to discover which exciting career you could carve out for yourself:Kitchen assistantA kitchen assistant’s role boils down to food prep and keeping serving areas clean and safe. Sounds straightforward but the day-to-day tasks will change often enough to keep you on your toes. Whether you find yourself working in a trendy city bar like All Bar One, a well-loved Toby Carvery or a restaurant like Miller & Carter, known for their signature ‘steak experience’, a typical day as a kitchen assistant may also involve taking deliveries and organising the stock room.In this support role, you’ll pick up tips and tricks from chefs who’ve been in the business most of their lives so it’s a great stepping stone to work your way up to more senior restaurant jobs. With little culinary experience needed, a kitchen assistant job is a great chance to learn the ropes and feed off the atmosphere behind the scenes of a restaurant.If you’re a good team player, can listen and follow instructions carefully and have a passion for food then a kitchen assistant job could be just right for you.Head chefWith some years of experience under your belt where you’ve proven that you not only know your way around the kitchen but shown have strong leadership skills, you’re ready to climb to the next spot on the chef’s career ladder. The main responsibilities of a head chef job are to oversee the daily operations of the kitchen and lead your team to thrive in any situation.Most chefs learn on the job, so formal qualifications aren’t always needed to show you can stand the heat in the kitchen, but they do strengthen expertise and can help you climb the ranks faster. Instead, a strong skill-set is much more important if you want to prove yourself as a head chef – with leadership and delegation being the most essential. Aside from this, you’ll need excellent culinary skills, a good knowledge of produce and top-notch time management.The Office of National Statistics revealed in 2017 that women only accounted for 17% of head chef jobs and we’re working hard to tip this scale. This is why at M&B we’re proud to promote that hospitality is not just a man’s business.Waiting staffAs a waiting staff, it’s ultimately your job to keep guests happy, but there’s a lot more to it than that. In this customer service role you’ll pick up crystal clear communication skills and learn how to handle any crisis like a pro. These are just a few of the 5 transferrable skills you learn in a waiting staff job.If you love going the extra mile for customers, thrive in a fast-paced environment or want to build your self-confidence then a waiting staff job could be a great career move for you. But in case you’re still undecided read our 10 stories that every waiting team understands.Bar staffIf you’re someone who is passionate about customer service and building relationships then look no further than a bar staff job. Small talk with the customers is just as much a part of the job as pouring the pints and shaking the cocktails. Plus, the different people who walk through the door each day are a chance for you to really mix things up.Like those in most restaurant jobs, bar staff are experts are multitasking. While keeping up the conversation you’ll need to remember the customer’s order, keep tabs on who’s next and make sure the bar is stocked up. A bar staff job can be challenging at times but it’s one of the most fun and lively jobs to develop your resilience and organisation skills.Hear from some of M&B’s very own employees what’s the best thing about being part of a bar team.General managerDid you know that 9 in 10 general managers working in a restaurant joined the industry in an entry-level role? Climbing the career ladder gives a deep insight into the workings of a restaurant, something which can be hard to understand without experience in the industry.General managers in restaurants are responsible for keeping a lid on everything. On the surface, a general manager’s role is to bring the team together while ensuring quality control and customer satisfaction. Behind the scenes, you’ll be responsible for recruiting new team members, overseeing their training, organising deliveries, being aware of new and changing regulations, budget control and keeping your team safe by enforcing high health and safety standards.For some, a general manager role is the ultimate restaurant job because their team feels like a second family. You’re in charge of keeping team morale high but it’s also your duty to watch over everyone’s safety, meaning this job can bring you a great sense of pride and satisfaction.Learn more about a career in the restaurant and pub industryAt Mitchells and Butlers, a restaurant job is more than just a job – it’s a career. It’s our goal to find talented and enthusiastic people who want to grow with our brand and share in our values. Whichever pub and restaurant job you choose we’ll make sure you feel a valued member of the team and get recognised for what you do.Find out more about the rewarding careers we can offer you at Mitchells and Butlers by browsing our kitchen jobs here or explore our other roles.


To help you decide which restaurant job is right for you we’ve put together the different ingredients for success you’ll need for each role

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Steph  Baker


Steph Baker

Steph  Baker


Steph Baker


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