Andre Codrington on why he chooses to work Gig to Gig.
As a chef you’re constantly learning. The restaurant and catering industry continues to grow, and for the modern workforce this means adapting to new trends and taking on new skills and experience to support this.
The vast levels of responsibilities and new challenges make life as a culinary worker so interesting. Working in different kitchens means new environments to look forward to and new teams to work with. Talented chefs are always in demand and so it’s an exciting time to get started.
We recently caught up with Andre Codrington, GIG Seeker and chef of 18 years’, to find out how he got started in the industry, why he chooses to work flexibly and what his ambitions for the future are.
How did you get into being a chef?
I began as an assistant in the Duke’s Hotel, St James’s, London. Over a period of time listening, observing and supporting experienced chefs, I mastered the techniques that helped me become the chef I am today. It’s true what they say - we all have to start somewhere...
Patience and experience is key to any profession but in particular to this career as I’ve learnt so much from just being around different kitchens. All these experiences gave me the confidence and motivation to progress further, and this has been a huge part of my journey as a chef.
What attracted you to the flexible work?
The balanced schedule and the flexible work life are important for many reasons. For a chef, working in the same kitchen on the same menu can become repetitive, so working flexibly at different sites makes my work more exciting and fulfilling. I've been cooking for about 18 years and the industry is constantly evolving. The way food is prepared is always changing, so you're constantly learning modern techniques.
What do you enjoy most about life as a GIG Seeker?
Cooking for me is not just an occupation but a passion. I am able to fulfil this with the click of a button - and this suits my lifestyle. Getting paid for what I enjoy spending my time doing is something that many are in search of. The best thing is that I am able to find out about all these new, exciting opportunities - all from my phone!
What kind of venues do you enjoy working in the most and why?
The busier the better! It’s exciting to cook for so many people. There is significant responsibility when working in these types of environments but I have learnt to apply my knowledge and skill to support where I can. Kitchens can be pressure filled environments but I thrive on this pressure. Success rests upon remaining calm, working hard and being a good communicator.
What are your hopes for the future?
One day I hope to travel to New Zealand and continue working as a chef. Travelling across the world would mean that I can meet new people and learn different cuisines, both of which I thoroughly enjoy. Originally this drew me into this profession and still to this day I value this when looking for work. I’d always wanted a career in the catering industry and 18 years on I continue to be amazed and fascinated by food and cookery across the world.