In order to efficiently run a kitchen, you need to be planned. Unlike what TV shows want you to believe, running a kitchen is more like running an army battalion or a football team.
Every small work in the kitchen needs to be planned and there is a proper hierarchy in place for a reason. The hierarchy in the kitchen was introduced by George Auguste Escoffier who developed a meticulous system of who did what in the kitchen.
In-spite of the planning and organisation, work does not go as per plan. In order to make your kitchen run smoothly, you need to have enough mise-en-place . This will help you dish out orders quickly and without fail.
I have seen many restaurants where the standards delivery time of a la carte food is around 30 minutes. The reason may be many however the culprit in most cases is the mise-en-place. Menu creep and low turnover of some dishes prompt restaurants to be unprepared for the dinner rush. By reducing your menu by doing a menu engineering analysis and keeping enough of those dishes you sell in the menu, you can attain efficiency.
Preparation list and Production chart
Another way to improve planning efficiency is to make a preparation list. A preparation list is like a tasklist that tells you what you need to make for that day. As a chef or a department head, it is your responsibility to tell your team what they need to make and how much.
A simple preparation list is a task list you give your team members on what they need to produce for the day.
A complimentary list that will help you plan your preparation list is a production chart. The production chart is a list of items that will help you identify what items are running short.
When you start your work in the morning, check your refrigerator and freezer to identify what item is running lower than required parstock and note it in the production chart. Use that to plan the day and put it in the preparation list.
Just by doing these two critical steps, you will be better prepared in the kitchen to handle any kitchen rush.