How NOT to Have a Public Downfall as a Celebrity Chef

December 16 2013 – Robert Fiumara

It’s been a tough year for chefs. Sure, we’re getting some great airplay between all the fantastic new TV shows and the average-joe-of-the-chef-world type competitions you see on the food network. Unfortunately, more publicity for us means more of an opportunity for celebrity chefs to fall from grace.


Being a chef is a labor of love – and if you’re a good one, it can catapult you to next-level stardom. If your love of cooking sometimes blooms into a full-blown dream of future celebrity, it could be a good time to start practicing ways to prevent yourself from going the way of Paula Deen or Nigella Lawson. Here are some tips.


Don’t Become a Celebrity


Seem simple? Seriously, a high-paying job at a posh (or perhaps your own) restaurant is enough for plenty of folks without the high-stakes TV competitions. If you want to avoid being in the public eye, you really can just retreat to the kitchen.


Don’t Do Anything You Wouldn’t Tell Your Mom About


Gordon Ramsay’s alleged ex-flame Sarah Symonds is not just his professed mistress – she’s written a tell-all book and taken to her blog to help ‘other women’ out there cope with being attached to a man who’s attached.


Talk to Everyone Like a Camera is Running


Paula Deen’s long and illustrious TV career, lucrative endorsements and vast southern empire were dismantled with just a few remarks. Once former employees came forward with allegations of racist remarks and unfair treatment, Deen wasn’t able to deny the remarks. Cameras weren’t on her when she said them – but the remarks still damaged her career irreparably. It goes to show any chef that behaving like a pro can have long term rewards, regardless of whether or not you’re bitten by the fame monster.


Embrace Personal and Professional Goals


Knowing what you want in the future can determine whether or not any opportunities that come your way are a good fit. It never hurts to create a 5, 10 and even 20 year plan for your career and personal future. If an opportunity comes along that vastly goes against the grain of your plan, maybe it’s not the right opportunity. Knowing your goals and how your own values influence them can give you an idea as to what types of opportunities you should be looking for in the future.


Not everyone can be famous – but if you do get those 15 minutes of fame, make them happen on your terms! Here’s to your happiness and luck in 2014.


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