You Want That Now?

Everyone needs help from time to time. In my business we need the extra help on weekends and during holidays. So why is it that the owners of the business do not understand this? It is the same old stuff week after week. We get a ton of orders and we’re super busy.

This is the time that they want extra special cakes or sample cakes. I do understand why they want it, but can they not see that we just do not have the time? Sample cakes can be made in our down time, you know slow days that are not part of the weekends. Special cakes should be put in a special book so I can allow time to complete it properly.There should never be a fondant covered cake or a hand painted cake order in with all our normal sale cakes.

No matter how many times I try and tell the owners about this, it just falls on deaf ears. I can not do everything little thing you need me to do when I’m busy. Orders comes first not fluff work!

I’m The Boss So What’s He Doing Here?

I got hired as a pastry chef . I worked at a restaurant and had two employees underneath me. When I got hired I was told that I was in charge of everything that came out of the pastry area. The boss told me that I would be creating menus for parties and daily meals. I thought it was great.

However , I quickly realized this was not going to be the case.  There was another pastry chef that use to come in randomly. He use to work there, so they respected his opinion. I realized that I should just get along with him. Together we would be able to put out a better menu than alone.

He did not want to collaborate with. He felt that even though he work a few days a month, that he could call and boss me around from his home. When I asked the owners what was going on they just blew me off and said well he knows what were used to and what we want.

This did not sit well with me. I’m a team player and all but a semi part timer being my boss? What did they hire me for? They could have hired a lower paid person to take orders from this guy. The restaurant advertised for a Pastry Chef and that’s what they got. If they were not going to respect me in that fashion, I was just going to find someone that would. So needless to say, I moved on to better pastures.

Petit Four Decorations

This may be one of the worst jobs that I have to do. Petit fours are small one bite cakes. They are a huge seller with flowers but for holidays they need to be drawn on. Do you know how hard it is to draw on a 1×1/2 inch petit four? HARD especially when there are thousands of them at holiday time. Every season has there decorations but Christmas is the worst. Everyone wants the most detailed of all decorations on this tiny cake. Why can’t I spend just one hour of my time decorating petit fours with flowers on them instead of eight hours drawing on them? We only charge a mere one dollar more for drawings that take eight times as long to do. I understand that everyone loves them but it is not cost effective to do them this way. Do my bosses realize that the customers are going to buy them either way?

Prepaying for your Orders

When ordering a cake be prepared to pay for it. We now require a 50% deposit or full payment for all orders. It is  that we are now required to do this, but it is the way of the world. We do not have the time or money to lose, for people to place orders and than never come to get them. If you place a order for anything that is not our normal item we will charge you in full at the time of order. It is this way everywhere now. You can not get any speciality product now without prepaying for your order.

Proofing Rolls

My proofer is not in the ideal spot, actually it couldn’t be in a worse spot. It is right next to the back door. Now I have asked numerous times if it could be moved and I was told no. My proof box is nothing more than an old metal box with a hot plate in it. I add water to an old can, place it on to the hot plate, and close the door. I wait until the box gets warm so I can add my rolls and bread. Now if your employees keep the back door open so they can smoke in the middle of winter, how do you expect the proof box to get warm? It won’t, but than you look at me like where’s my rolls? Hello, what part of  can we move the box do you not understand? If you do not wanna move it, tell your employees they are not allowed to open that door and to use one of the other 3! This way I can do my job properly.

Going Beyond Your Duties

The bakery where I work I am always asked to go beyond my duties. I was hired as a cake decorator. This involves icing and decorating cakes. That’s it! We are not suppose to do anything  that is not relate to cake decorating. That means answering phones, taking orders, baking, or waiting on customers.

Recently, our one owner has being trying to change my duties. When the phone rings she wants me to get  it. She wants me to take customer orders. She basically wants me to start doing my job and the job of a counter girl. Now when I have to do both jobs my original job as a decorator gets put on hold. that means all of my timed cake orders have to wait until I’m done on the phone. So if a customer come in for their cake early it is probably not going to be done.  All this is fine to a point.

The point comes when my cake order is late because of me answering the phones. The customer gets mad and than the owner gets mad at me for not having the cake ready. Well guess what? It is all your fault for making me do others jobs!  Hire people for the job you need to fill. Do not under staff your bakery and expect people to fill in where needed and still rush around to get everything done. It is not going to happen like you want it to. The only  thing that is happening is that you are making people mad both customers and employees.

Baby Butt Cake

I am not a fan of this baby butt cake. I get the idea that the decorator was going for, but it is still just a baby butt cake with no head.

Directions

In order to create this cake the decorator used 2 cakes and set it up like a tradition tiered cake. On the top tier the decorator tried to round the cake so it was shaped more like a baby butt. She iced it white to look like a diaper, added some chocolate fondant legs, and added blanket to cover it all. She added polka dots to the entire cake to make it balanced and added a bow at the bottom.

I feel that at least some parts of this cake could have been done better, like adding fondant ruffles to the diaper area. This way it could cover up any imperfections in the icing. It would have also looked more realistic. The bow at the bottom could have been done better also.  The bows loops do not look to be the same size and it does not have that nice little wrinkle bows have or even ribbons.Baby Butt Cake

Lying in the Bakery

I do a lot of ordering at my work. What I do not order, someone else does. I always try to stay up to date on all the prices of the goods coming in reguardless of who is ordering them. This way if I ever open up my own business, I will have an idea of ingredient prices.

So when I heard the owner tell me that something cost a lot more than it actually does it annoys me. Why are they trying to lie to me? Do they not realize that I know how much everything cost?

Now I was told, maybe they were trying to get the point across that prices have gone up. Maybe they feel that we are being wasteful with product? Everything that is wasted in a day cost a lot of money in the end. I understand all that, but do not come to me and tell me that each batch of icing cost a thousands of dollars to make. I clearly know that its only hundreds. I now and always will see you as a liar  and how will that benefit your business?

No Wedding Cake Orders

Happy 11-11-11! Today is a huge day in the wedding world. Which means bakeries are very busy making and delivering wedding cakes. Everyone knew this day would come so they prepared for it! They went to bridal shows, ran ads, tweeted about it, and posted specials on the facebook walls.

My bakery did none of the above! We are for sale. We are losing business on a daily basis. This time last year, I could expect a 40+ hour work week. This year I’m barely making 30 hours.  We do not advertise or use any social media outlet to drum up business. This weekend I only had one wedding cake! ONE! Most bakeries are packed with wedding cake orders this weekend.

The owners just keep saying “No one has any money to spend that is why we are not busy.” Nope that’s not it! We did not do what we are suppose to do in order to get business. My co worker mentioned to the owner ” Do you know what today is? Other local bakeries have a lot of wedding cake orders. Where are ours at?”  The owner said “Really”. Yes really!!!!

Hovering Around in the Bakery

I work for someone like most people do. One thing I find especially annoying is when they hover. Sometimes it is okay with me, such as if they are waiting for me to write on a cake. Other times, I want you to get out of my room and leave me alone, especially when I am fixing something you screwed up on.

Do you realize that people in general do not like to be started at? Maybe you do not realize you are doing this or maybe you are trying to intimidate me in some way. Either way, realize that you are hovering and that I will never be intimidated by you.

If I wanted your input on something I would ask you. If you do not know how to do what I am, why are you telling me how to do it? Do you realize you should only give advice when you know about it or when it is asked of you.

Uniforms

Uniforms are great! They are basically a advertisement of where you work. People look at and read shirts with sayings. If I see a dirty, old, or torn up shirt, I will not be patronizing your business. However if I see an employee with a semi new, clean, not torn shirt I will patronize your place. I want to know that business owners care about how they and their employees look. So do me a favor the next time you see a employee with a ripped or old shirt, put out the money and buy new ones. It probably will help your business.

Not Opening on Time

I am always on time. I think it is a good character trait to have. It shows dependability and a willingness to work. So why when I show up to work do I always have to wait for you to get there? At first, I thought you over slept, okay one day is fine but why did you not call to tell me? Here I am, sitting in your parking lot waiting for you to come. Than you show up and say, oh I didn’t know you would be waiting for me. I do not have keys to go in so why wouldn’t I be? The next week and numerous times after this the same thing happens.  Other employees are with me these times, were all talking about leaving after your really late. Some do but I stayed because I’m getting paid to sit in the parking lot. The next time it happens, I have had enough and I leave to! Than you have the nerve to get mad at me for not coming to work! Show up on time and maybe your employees will not leave. This is no way to run a business!

Phone Usage

I know you do not want us to make personal phone calls on the bakery phone. We do anyway, so you have decided to end all outgoing calls. Now what happens when we need a line out? Oh, we have to use our own personal cell phones to call the bakery to get a line out. So now, I have to waste a minute to call the bakery, wait for the phone to ring, pick it up while hanging up my phone, than make a call out. God Forbid I have to call 911, I have to run to get my phone, call and tell the operator right where I am. She can not see my location like she could if I called from your phone! Now what would happen if one of your 15 year old employees had to call in a panic, do you think she could remember your address? Oh, she might not? Well my suggestion would be to get an outgoing line!

Halloween Cakes

I just love everything about halloween. The best part about it for me, is making halloween cakes. I’m so over candy, I just want cake!

This is a holiday where you can let your imagination take you anywhere it wants to go. Ghost, goblins, tombstones, and pumpkins are all perfect things to put on cake. You can make scary cakes or kiddy cakes, anything goes. Below are two examples of halloween cakes one scary the other not so much
Halloween Cakes

Do You Want to Learn?

learnWe all think that we are the best at what we do. Some of us are and others not so much. I always try and help people with what they are doing. If I know something and you don’t,  why should I not help you? I also wanna learn what you know. If you do not want my help just say so. I do not need to be wasting my time showing you the right way to do something if you are not gonna listen.