The first of a new series of posts shining a light on our biggest asset – our team – and their impeccable level of service, The Hidden Side of Hospitality has been created to break down the myths and stigma attached to working in the industry. And what better way to do that than by introducing some of our key team members, and letting their stories and experiences enlighten you.
Whether you are looking to enjoy a long, fruitful and fast-paced career in hospitality or have your sights set on a different career entirely, hospitality is the industry that keeps on giving. It opens so many doors, and gives back so much – if you aren’t afraid to work hard.
Choosing our first face in the spotlight, for us, was a no brainer. An incredible example of how hospitality can add to your skill set and bolster your academic abilities with social ones too – please meet Callum Barton, a supervisor in The Portman and The Pig & Whistle, who has been with us since he was 16 years old. A self-confessed introvert, at least at first, Callum has utilised the skills he’s learnt with us to successfully secure an extremely competitive internship at BAE systems, a world leader in Aerospace engineering, following his degree in rocket science.
Q: How long have you been working at Healing Manor?
C: I have worked at the Manor now for four and a half years. I started right after I finished my GCSEs.
Q: What role do you play in the Manor’s incredible team?
C: I am currently a supervisor, so I’m involved in running the day-to-day service of The Portman restaurant and The Pig & Whistle pub. Which really is the best of both worlds – being able to interact with and serve customers, and also gain managerial experience at the same time.
Q: Had you worked in hospitality before joining Healing Manor?
C: Working at the Manor was my first job. Everything I have learnt about hospitality and customer service has been gained here.
Q: How did you feel about the job when you first started?
C: I was very nervous! I was quite introverted when I first left school, so I was worried about interacting with customers.
Q: And how do you feel about it now? Has working in the industry given you a different perspective of what’s involved?
C: The job has given me a lot of insight as to how important teamwork is within a workplace. At school we were always taught about how teamwork is the most important part of any business, however I had been sceptical about this until I witnessed it first-hand. Every person working in hospitality from pot washers to waiters and managers has an immensely important role to play. Without everyone working in harmony things come to a grinding halt.
Q: What do you think are the biggest misconceptions about working in hospitality?
C: I think a big misconception about the hospitality industry is that it is very stressful and therefore for the same pay people would rather work in retail. During lockdown I worked in a supermarket and so, as someone that has worked in both, I can quite confidently say that for a young person hospitality is a great industry to work in. It can be very busy at times but that is not a bad thing, this means the time passes much faster! You also have a chance to form bonds and friendships with fellow staff which makes it a lot more fun to come to work.
Q: How do you feel being a part of the Healing Manor team has changed you as a person?
C: Working at the Manor has boosted my confidence when talking to strangers. Massively. Before I started working, I would have classed myself as quite shy, however now I would probably say I am an extrovert. Not only do I feel like a different person, people who have worked with me over the whole time have also mentioned how I am more outgoing and talkative now.
Q: What skills has the experience given you that you perhaps did not have before? And which of those would you say are transferable and why?
C: Because of this job I have successfully secured an extremely competitive internship at BAE systems, a world leader in Aerospace engineering. With my newfound social skills, and my increased confidence when talking to strangers, I found the interview process a lot easier and less daunting than it might have been.
Q: How has working in the hospitality industry aided your personal and professional development?
C: Working in hospitality has also demonstrated my ability to work in a high-pressure environment that requires teamwork, something that is key when working in engineering. I hope that the skills that I have learned as a supervisor at the Manor will be transferable and help me get promoted to supervisor at BAE.
Q: What has been your favourite part of the job, why so?
C: My favourite part of the job is the people I work with. One of the biggest reasons that I have never left the Manor is because I feel like I am part of an ever changing and expanding family. I have formed many new friendships with people I work with, and it is always a pleasure to see everyone again when I return from university. I will miss everyone greatly when I move on after graduating.
And a few silly ones… just because…
Q: Favourite dish
C: Fish and chips.
Q: Favourite dessert
C: Sticky toffee pudding – I order it every time I come in to eat.
Q: Biggest food dislike
C: When something is too plain, I like my food to be full of flavour.
Q: Favourite drink – non-alcoholic and alcoholic
C: I have a ‘slight’ obsession with Irn Bru, maybe it’s due to my Scottish heritage but I can’t get enough of the stuff. And my favourite alcoholic drink is a pina colada because it reminds me of being abroad by the beach.
Q: Favourite song
C: As a musician I find it hard to pick a favourite song to listen to, but my favourite piece of music to play on my saxophone is The Jazz Police.
Q: Biggest pet peeve
C: When I tell people that I’m doing rocket science as my degree and they respond by saying ‘haha at least it’s not rocket science’.
If you’d like to find out more about the current roles we are looking to fill within our team here at Healing Manor you will find all the detail in our regularly updated recruitment page.