The Pizza Hut branch in Makiki usually has two cooks on duty, but when the pace picks up, even the managers jump in and help. Above, assistant manager Yogi Kim spread pepperoni and cheese atop a couple of ladels of sauce as he prepared a pizza to go late Wednesday afternoon.

The protocols of pizza

Yogi Kim and his crew keep
Pizza Hut customers in the
Makiki area happy

YOGI Kim got his job as assistant manager at Pizza Hut the old-fashioned way: He sent in his resume and was hired after the company's corporate office called him in for an interview. Since then he's worked at the company's Moiliili branch and now its Makiki branch, where he manages the evening crew of 15 and keeps busy doing just about everything that needs doing at a pizza delivery/carryout branch. Kim, 30, is a graduate of McKinley High School. He also attended Kapiolani Community college for two years, majoring in business administration. He is single and lives in McCully.

Who: Yogi Kim

Title: Assistant manager

Job: Oversees the night shift for Pizza Hut's delivery/carryout branch in Makiki

Question: How long have you been working at Pizza Hut?

Answer: I've been working here three years and six months.

Q: Who's the manager of the Makiki branch?

A: Her name is Juliet Fermo. She works in the day shift and I take care of the night shift.

Q: Where did you work before Pizza Hut?

A: I was a kitchen manager at a Japanese restaurant in Kapahulu.

Q: At night, when you're in charge, how many people do you work with?

A: At night, probably around 15.

Q: What do those 15 people do?

A: Most of them are the drivers, so they take deliveries and like that.

Q: How many do the cooking?

A: We have two cooks.

Q: That's not that many, yeah?

A: That's enough most times. If they're real busy, then the manager helps them out.

Q: What time of the day do people start ordering pizzas?

A: The most busy time is 5:30 (p.m.) to 9 o'clock. That's the peak hours.

Q: What time do you open?

A: We open at 11 a.m.

Q: And do people start ordering pizzas right away?

A: Oh yeah, because it's just around noon time -- lunch time -- so we get a lot of orders from the corporate offices.

Yogi Kim, right, works with a crew of about 15 at the Makiki Shopping Village delivery/carryout branch of Pizza Hut, including Ray Okawa, left, who on Wednesday readied oiled pizza pans for use.

Q: What's the region that your branch covers?

A: Oh, we go far. (Laughter) We have a big area. All the way into Manoa Valley, all the way to Restaurant Row, to Ala Moana Center ...

Q: Have you ever been a pizza delivery person?

A: Not in this store. But in the other store (in Moiliili), I was driving a few times just to help out. The delivery was late and we had a lot of customer complaints, so I went on delivery.

Q: What's the protocol on tipping the delivery people? What do the drivers expect?

A: I hope they don't expect anything from the customers, because the tip is dependent on the customer's view.

Q: But really, they usually do expect something, right?

A: Yeah, you're right.

Q: So what do you advise them?

A: Just deliver the pizza as soon as possible and don't expect anything from the customer. If you expect too much, they may not give you a tip.

Q: Is there an average tip that people come forward with?

A: Not that I know of. (Laughter) I'm usually busy with doing something else -- helping out the cooks and prepping.

Without aid of a scale, Pizza Hut assistant manager Yogi Kim precisely cut pizza dough on Wednesday for pizzas that will be delivered to customers from Manoa to the Ala Moana area.

Q: What's prepping?

A: Like preparing the dough and the vegetables.

Q: Do you do much paperwork?

A: Yeah, mostly I do all of the above.

Q: Are you in charge of keeping track of the hours of the other employees?

A: Yes.That's one of the main things I have to do.

Q: What are the most popular pizza toppings right now?

A: Most people prefer the Supreme or pepperoni-mushroom.

Q: What's the Supreme?

A: The Supreme comes with meats and vegetables all combined.

Q: What's your favorite kind of pizza?

A: I like pepperoni-pineapple.

Q: Are you planning to keep working at Pizza Hut for awhile?

A: I'm satisfied working here. I've been here a long time and I'm familiar with the background of Pizza Hut. So I'm probably going to stick around a while.

Kim spread a layer of cheese over one of the pizzas-in-the-making.

"Hawaii at Work" features people telling us what they do for a living. Send suggestions to mcoleman@starbulletin.com.

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