Assistant Production Manager

About Us
Dandelion Chocolate is a bean-to-bar chocolate factory in San Francisco's Mission District. We make chocolate from only two ingredients, cocoa beans and cane sugar, and travel to origins as often as we can to build good, trusting relationships with the producers who grow and ferment the beans we buy. We're always on the search for good cocoa beans, and now we're looking for an Assistant Production Manager to support the Production Manager in growing and shaping our production team as we scale up.

About the Job
At Dandelion Chocolate, we're in an exciting period of expansion, which means growing our teams and leadership levels, testing out new machines, improving processes, and building out a new space all at the same time. As our Assistant Production Manager, you will hone your leadership and management skills by working closely with the Production Manager. A typical day might start with assisting the Production Manager to create and communicate a daily plan with the team. You then order a new production table and research potential linen vendors to support production operations. After lunch, you interview an Apprentice Chocolate Maker candidate to assess their team skills and finish out the day training a new hire on how to pull a melanger. 

You'll be reporting to the Production Manager and working closely with the production team to hit production goals and make chocolate that meets the highest quality standards. Success in this role is when the day runs smoothly, we hit all daily goals, and the team is motivated and on task even when the Production Manager is not there.

About You
Our ideal candidate loves building a cohesive, positive team of chocolate makers by working tirelessly alongside the team to ensure they have the knowledge and tools they need. You easily build rapport with the team and find joy in reaching consensus. From production plans to storage bins to team schedules, you love keeping everything organized. You approach every situation with a can-do attitude no matter how sticky (or chocolatey) the situation might get. You keep your cool under pressure and maintain a healthy perspective on the daily ups and downs and amid changing priorities. Whether it’s guidance or a clean spatula, you love helping others get what they need to be successful. You’re good at reading character and you are looking to hone management skills like project management, interviewing and hiring, difficult conversations, and planning. You should have organization and planning skills to support the team and Production Manager to keep things running smoothly with whatever hurdles come your way. You accomplish this while maintaining a positive outlook that will make people want to work with you again and again. You'll be measured by your ability to successfully support the Production Manager and the team in their effort to hit goals, deadlines, and quality metrics.

  • Planning -- Assist in creating a daily production plan and ensuring that it’s adhered to and adjusted according to the team’s needs. Audit production and inventory plans on a weekly basis. 
  • Quality and Cleanliness -- Assist in helping set and maintain cleanliness and quality standards.
  • Hiring -- Assist the Production Manager in conducting interviews, training, and onboarding new hires.
  • Management -- Regularly check in with teammates throughout the day to monitor progress. Handle and adapt to hiccups in everyday production, including broken machines and spilled batches. Set an outstanding example for the rest of the team for professionalism and help keep the team motivated and focused on immediate and long-term goals.
  • Areas of Ownership -- Coordinate ordering and inventory of supplies to keep the team stocked and able to perform their duties. Work on special projects and R&D initiatives with production manager, head of production, and other departments as needed. 
  • Machines -- Have a basic understanding of troubleshooting each area. Troubleshoot machines, processes, etc and bring issue with suggested solutions to Production Manager.
  • Production -- Assist with areas of production, from roasting to tempering to foiling. 
  • Other tasks as needed

  • Food Experience -- You should have 2+ years of professional experience in the food and beverage industry or an educational degree in the culinary arts, with a minimum of 6 months to a year in a leadership role (eg. lead chocolate maker, shift lead.) Prior chocolate experience is a huge plus!
  • Leadership -- You have the desire to further develop your personal leadership style. You’ve led successful projects from the idea stage to completion. You are keenly aware of the production goals and set yourself apart as someone who helps keep the team motivated and focused on hitting our daily/weekly goals. 
  • Team skills -- You're known for your positive, team-oriented, can-do attitude and leadership. You can rally a group of people to make even repetitive tasks fun. You are excited to work closely with a small team and can easily handle day-to-day personnel issues. You draw upon personal experience to handle tricky personnel situations.
  • Adaptability -- You are excited to develop new processes and roll with the speed bumps that come with making chocolate: the power is out -- candlelit chocolate making, go! You must be able to create an effective plan and explain how it will change with potential machine failures or people out sick.
  • Always give 110% -- You are willing to go above and beyond to problem solve. You have good time management and prioritization skills -- you understand competing priorities and always try to maximize what you can accomplish with the available time and resources. You bring potential issues to the production manager’s attention along with several ideas of possible solutions.
  • Excellent communication skills -- Your communication style is approachable and clear, making it easy to give direction to the team, problem solve, and talk through any issues that arise. 
  • Organizational skills -- You're a motivated, buttoned-up person who likes to plan (and back-up plan, and to backup your back-up plan) to make sure all your t's are crossed and i's are dotted.
  • Technical know-how -- Well-versed in computer skills that including Gmail, Excel, Google docs, and Word so you can build a spreadsheet to track nib yields, or craft a google doc of the morning meeting agenda.
  • Natural curiosity -- You can be depended upon to pick up new skills as necessary for the role and team.
  • Bachelor's degree or relevant industry experience, legally authorized to work in the U.S.
  • Fluent spoken and written English.

Dandelion Chocolate constantly invests in its people and culture. We offer excellent perks including paid vacation and sick days, subsidized medical, dental, and vision benefits as well as the option to enroll in our 401k program. Our team members also enjoy employee discounts, commuter benefits, local gym discounts, and lots of chocolate tasting opportunities!

How to Apply
If you are interested, please respond with your resume and a cover letter. You will stand out from other applicants if you include a few sentences about the best team you’ve worked with and why. We do our best to respond to all serious applicants within 7-14 days.

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