Top meat cutter skills needed to get the job.

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Comments (12)


What are the top 3 traits or skills every meat cutter must have to excel?

Can you suggest any tips or insights to develop your meat cutter expertise?

Reply - Report abuse in Bloomington, Indiana

81 months ago

presentation,merchandising,andcustermer service

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joseph in Perris, California

80 months ago

Common people
tmj good suggestions but those will not get you anywere

1st trait Love your job and the three items above will come automatically, I PROMISE!!!!
2nd trait remember who you work for... this means your company has made the decision to trust you with hundreds of thousands of dollars to make money at the same time build a reputation know that when you are behind the counter you first cut should be the best cut on every piece of meat you handle

3rd and final be clean and organized this will keep your product fresh your customers safe your company will notice this almost immeadiately one of the most common failures in the industry is a lost meat cutter i can go into details but for you people who are in this industry you know what i am saying
good luck and remember your best experience will come from those grumpy old meat cutters that have been behind the knife for 20+ years, dont think for a minute they are not laughing on the inside thinking your a fool turn the table around become friends and let him open up to you he can teach you things you will never even imagine that was possible, he or she may be the reason you will need to get that promotion your looking for
godd luck

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Garry in El Cajon, California

80 months ago

On the contary Joseph. Presentation,Merchandising abilty,and customer service abilities are a valued asset to the Industry and under valued. As far as your comment of grumpy old meat cutters.. I have been a Qualified (Degree) Butcher with 20+ years and it is obviously you are tarnishing the profession.

The 4 Abilities that would assist in the trade (without experience or training) include;

Mathamatical Abilities - calculus

Manual dexterity

Forword thinking abilities

Customer service rapport.

Hope these tips are useful for an indication.

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Sam the Butcher in Redmond, Oregon

62 months ago

Joesph and Garry, you are both right, I would have to say from a long time in this field to someone else who wants to enter it is GO BACK TO SCHOOL, this is a career that is going away. It used to be a trade of skill and talent but as each year that goes buy the larger companies are moving away from letting the Meat Manager make any decisions, For example set schematics, more and more the decisions on how to merchandise meat products is being done from the main offices from someone who has not cut meat or interacted with customers in a long time. Anyone entering as an apprentice will be surprised to learn how long it will take to earn Journeyman level wages, it can now take 5+years compared to my 2 year apprenticeship back in the late 80's due to more part time status.
my response to the above traits or skills
1) Love your job = love your pay, if you love your job you never work a day in your life, this is a job that requires work, you dont have to love it, you just have to be able to keep coming back.
2)Remember who you work for= Joseph is wrong, you dont work for the company you work for the customer, the company would be broke without them.
3)Clean and organized= 100% TRUE heed this advice.
4)math skill= only if you are a manager (profit margin, optimal ratio, Profit & loss statements) other than management you dont need it.
5)Manual dexterity= Working in the cold, it can get very uncomfortable and your hands will get numb, you have to be able to work through this safely as not to cut yourself.(very important) and meat can get heavy, need a good back.
6)Forward thinking abilities= Manager again, I assume he means the ability to adjust to daily business changes(weather,holidays,ect.) thes affect what you need to cut, Hot weather= more BBQsteak cold weather = More stew and pot roast, Holiday= turkeys, prime ribs, hams, ect.
7)Customer service= #1 best thing you can give your employer, ability to help and serve your customer is your main goal

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Leon Wildberger in Dalton, Georgia

51 months ago


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Leon Wildberger in Dalton, Georgia

51 months ago


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jimhenry in Morgantown, Pennsylvania

51 months ago

As to math abilities I would add computer skills. Back in the 80s I was the only meat mgr in my company that actually put my cutting test results into spreadsheets. I had several templates for different methods of merchandising the same piece of meat, say, a top round (Inside) or a bottom round (gooseneck) etc.
Then by plugging in the week's price list you could instantly see the most profitable method to merchandise each sub-primal. I was consistently in the top 5 of my 150 store chain.

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cuban cowboy in Austin, Texas

20 months ago

I have a meat cutters test tomorrow to get a job at a nice grocery store. Ive dont alittle butchering with a steakhouse. How should i approach this hands on test because im sure there gonna be looking for perfection..

- Was this comment helpful? Yes / No (1) Reply - Report abuse in Dansville, Michigan

20 months ago

I would recommend going in there with the attitude that you don't need the job. That should help with nervousness and confidence. Be honest, if you don't know how to do something they ask, don't try to fake it. In such a case try to counter with "but I'd like to show you how I do THIS.."

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cuban cowboy

20 months ago

Thank you ive watched alot of videos and was calling the step before they could explain what they were doing plus my dad owned a butcher shop so ive been around meats my whole life. I definitely know most of every kind of steak cut there is and can quarter a chicken easy. But i would just hope that if there is something i could learn that they would still see potenal and take the time to teach me. But i am very dependable very eager to learn and very sociable that should be enough to get me in wouldnt you think?

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Jimmy the butcher in Brighton, Michigan

20 months ago

Well I hope you passed your test! Pass or Fail, I'd like to suggest that there are other trades that need new blood, and pay much better. Among them welders, machinists, lathe operators, heavy equipment operators.There are many companies willing to start folks at $30/hr right out of a 6 month trade school. I spent 28 years in the retail meat business and can tell you it is severely underpaid considering how hard you work and the skills required. I also recommend you check out this website for other opportunities:

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