Try and find a list of millionaire retired chefs!
If you look at the career path of your average chef it looks like this, they get an uncontrollable itch as youngsters to be in hospitality. Probably find a job as a kitchen hand somewhere and begin what will become the obsession, a career in cooking. After working there arse off in kitchens over weekends and holidays, they then get the opportunity of a lifetime, an apprenticeship. Well that’s how it was in the old days now it is some fast tracked half arsed course that gives you masters in boiling water.
The initial training part of your career will go relatively smoothly but you will long for that title of executive chef. The reality is the amount of true executive chefs in this country you could count on both hands, what we actually have is very well trained, creative, hands on head chefs that are made responsible for the whole kitchen and associated departments. This will not deter you though from seeking what seems to be the illusive title.
Eventually someone will offer you your big chance, a job as the executive chef, unfortunately it will come with a limited brigade and not quite the salary you were hoping for and the hours are about twice what you thought they would be but remember you do have the title!!
So you commence the job in the hope that one day the remuneration will meet the hours. You start having staffing issues, the boss is on your case about food cost and wage cost, and you decide he is an absolute prick and its best to leave. You have probably been there about 18months, taken a bit of cash in hand and have not noticed that your superannuation payments have not been paid but as you have been taking cash in hand your worried about the tax man getting you so you forget about it. You started at 18 or 19 you repeat this process over the next ten years and then realise you’re looking down the barrel of becoming a thirty year old serial repeater. Bloody hell I better get this sorted I have nothing to my name, I haven’t even had one divorce yet what am I doing with my life. Ok the plan, find a girlfriend and have a great time, marry her because she is so much fun, ensure she has a baby quickly so you can start to hate her because it is no longer fun, have an affair with a waitress and get divorced, at least your life is back on line and now you are heading towards forty. The small amount of money you did save is now split in two and you are paying child care. Realise that you are now heading towards fifty and have to make some changes, go into your first business, pocket all the cash and remove the stress form your life, hey at least now you have some money. Please do not pay tax or do any financial planning that is for rich pricks, things go along for a while until you get a tax bill you cannot jump over and the good times turn very bad very quickly. You shut the business down, you eventually find a woman who has finally found a solid man, by this time the sting has really gone out of you and you both restart your life at fifty and plan for your retirement.
However you can take another path, go to a sound financial planner in your twenties, shut your mouth and resist the temptation to tell them how good you are, I can assure that they have heard it all before. Allow them to give you some sound structure and financial advice. You stick to the cooking and let them look after your finances. If you do this you will most probably find that you get to your mid-fifties and have quite a comfortable retirement in site. Please please take this advice from one who knows, I have had the privilege of working with a fantastic group of guys over the past couple of years and have seen them turn the lives around of many of our industry brothers, take the time to look them up AS partners in Melbourne and ask for Leo.