US restaurant owner condemns Kiwi hospitality staff as 'lazy', says immigrants are much better

A US restaurant owner says New Zealand hospitality workers are lazy and "unwilling to work" - and that he pays bottom dollar to his staff to try and make them work harder.

The man called into Magic Talk and spoke with hosts Leah Panapa and Danny Watson. Identified by the first name Mark, he said he has worked in and owned multiple restaurants, both in the US and Aotearoa.

He says hiring staff in New Zealand is "a nightmare" and immigrants are much better workers.

"Kiwis are unwilling to work - they've been raised with the ethic that the benefit is a viable career choice."

When asked what he paid his staff by Panapa, Mark revealed he always paid "as little as possible" - but would give bonuses for good productivity.

"A wage should not be based on what an individual needs - all individuals need more than what the value they produce for the company," he said.

He said by paying the bare minimum, bad workers would leave - and good workers would "make a lot of money" from the bonuses, therefore staying.

"Which is exactly what I wanted."

Both Panapa and Watson agreed they would never work for Mark - and were not surprised he struggled to find good staff.

"It just seems exploitative," said Panapa.