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A New Start

As a hospitality professional with 35 years experience in both teaching and working in hospitality my main motivation is to get young people excited about our industry. I have a passion to help others see hospitality as a real career option with knowledge, training, progression and incredible job satisfaction as core to what this amazing and varied industry has to offer them.

What we need to do is open our businesses to education and show them what we can do. Our industry isn’t just about bums in beds and table turnover. Let’s face it the general public are fascinated with what goes on behind closed doors, the British are obsessed with food, just look at the number of food programmes on the television, and everyone thinks they are an expert on service, but ask them about wine and they generally look like a rabbit caught in the headlights held down by the Sommelier! How many people say to you “I would love to run a pub, tea shop, coffee shop...” without knowing that to run a successful business you have to also be a highly skilled businessman, human resource manager, IT specialist, accountant, sourcing specialist, have extensive legal knowledge as ignorance is no excuse AND possibly also be clairvoyant! It is definitely not a career for the feint hearted and yet can bring so many joyous rewards.

When I meet owners and managers who complain they can’t attract operational staff I ask them what their recruitment strategy is, often the local news paper and job centre is their first point of job posting. Few look to technology i.e. Face Book or Twitter stating they doubt it would work....but have they tried? We need to attract Millennials of all levels into our businesses, do you know what they want from us? How often in the last year did you invite local schools into your business to see the opportunities on offer in your sector let alone within your own business? Show them the variety of jobs we have to offer, yes we desperately need chefs and front of house staff but we also need engineers, health & safety expertise, good human resource specialists, trainers, PR specialists, IT analysts..... the list is never ending and even we so often forget. In an industry that out sources so many of our services WE need to raise awareness of how rewarding it is to be in hospitality as a career choice and not for people to look down on those that choose to work in our sector.

Lets face it how many people go to work every day with the sole intention of making sure the people we look after have a great time? We create experiences, we deliver dreams, we make memories, I am not sure working in retail can quite match that!


Suzanne Weekes has over 30 years of industry experience in teaching and training. She is able to relate to employees at all levels. Since 2017 she has been an independent consultant, offering practical business solutions, hands on training and advice to get the best out of people in the work place.