Top Chef's Gail Simmons Explains How to Stand Out in a Male-Dominated Industry

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Women have made a lot of progress when it comes to gaining equal rights, but gender-based societal obstacles have still not completely disappeared. Gail Simmons knows exactly what it's like to work in a male-dominated business, and she has learned what it takes to succeed in such environments.

The Top Chef judge isn't one to run from a challenge, and instead embraces them in order to continue to move forward. In the video at the top Simmons admits that there were things that she couldn't do. "I couldn't lift the 20-gallon stock pot. I needed assistance, but I was determined to still do the best I can." Pushing through that added pressure is what helped the culinary expert thrive even in kitchens where she was the only woman. Watch the full interview above.

RELATED: Top Chef's Gail Simmons Shares Her Tips for Starting a One-Woman Business


I was so impressed the way that you spoke about the way you worked in the restaurants in New York City. You were in that kitchen with all men. They were treating you like men, they were telling you to act like a man. And you lasted and you thrived. I was in kitchens here in New York, where I was the only female. The behavior of men would change just a little bit around me because I was in their space. And there was certain things I physically couldn't do. I couldn't lift the 20 gallon stock pot. I needed assistance but I was determined to still do the best that I can. Put my head down everyday and do my work. Professional kitchens to this day are still very male dominated. Until we as women can figure out how men can breastfeed and birth our children That will be a fact of life. And so, that's not saying women can't do it, but it certainly changes the game a little bit. We have that added pressure. [MUSIC]
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