4 reasons why you're never too old to do an apprenticeship

Emily Smith our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 23 October 2020

Apprenticeships were once just for 16-24 year olds so when you think of the programme chances are you immediately think of young adults who are fresh out of school. But not long ago the maximum age limit was scrapped and just last year 46% of apprentices in the UK were over 25-years-old - a huge jump in the numbers. We’re here to tell you that the programme is for people of all backgrounds and experience levels and dish up four reasons why you’re never too old to do an apprenticeship.

It’s not about age, it’s about your attitude

In case we haven’t made it clear already, we’ll say it one more time – apprenticeships aren’t just for young people. These programmes give an equal opportunity to everyone, offering the chance to train in a new area of work and start earning a living – one of the five reasons you’ll love an apprenticeship with M&B. So, what’s your story? Maybe you’ve been switching between industries to find what you’re good at or you fancy a challenge. Whatever you background, you’ll be happy to know that it won’t affect your chances of getting onto an apprenticeship. All you need is to be a team player, have a can-do attitude and a willingness to learn.

You can rediscover your passion for learning

If you’ve been out for education or in a job for some time, chances are you won’t have been flexing your brain muscles as much as you could have been. You can still thrive in an apprenticeship and see it as your chance to rediscover your passion for learning. You’ll have better time-management skills and balancing your shifts with coursework will come much easier to you. Let’s be honest, classroom learning isn’t for everyone and if you’re anything like our apprentice Hannah then it can be a frustrating way to learn. An apprenticeship programme might be the perfect choice for you, placing you in control of how and when you learn.

You’ll bring a unique outlook

Teams that are made up of people from different areas, genders and with one age gap of 20 years are 87% better at making decisions – that’s an impressive difference but what makes them a dream team? Well, people from different backgrounds have their own way of doing things – a unique outlook. Those extra years may be just what an employer is looking for to add a little diversity to the team, so don’t let it put you off from applying! After all, they do say that with age comes wisdom.

Your communication skills are invaluable

Communication is one of the top transferrable skills that employers look out for when searching for the next member of their team. So, you’re a great talker and could give any salesperson a run for their money, but when it comes to communication it’s also about being a great listener. Yes, some people are naturals when it comes to communication but for most people, it’s a skill that comes with time. The great news for you is that those extra years can make you more qualified for an apprenticeship programme.

Fancy taking on a new challenge?

Some of our most talented and ambitious colleagues join the company through an apprenticeship programme and we’re looking for more fun and driven people to join the M&B team. If you’re ready to serve up some success, a bar and waiting apprenticeship could be for you, or apply for our chef apprenticeships and show us you know your way around a kitchen. And that’s not all we’ve got – our management apprenticeships are the perfect opportunity to show you’re a born leader.

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Is an apprenticeship right for you? Here's what our apprentice Hannah has to say

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Hannah completed her Level 2 Bar and Waiting apprenticeship at the Crown & Anchor – a Sizzling Pub in Birmingham. Sizzling is one of the 13 brands here at Mitchells & Butlers and we’re proud to share Hannah’s experience working there. No matter whether you’re fresh out of school or want to retrain in the hospitality industry, Hannah explains why an apprenticeship could be right for you:“I wanted to learn and gain qualifications so I could progress for the future”For Hannah, getting on-the-job experience and a qualification under her belt was the main motivation to do an apprenticeship. Our programmes are designed to put you straight to work and give you valuable experiences from the very first day. Not to mention you’ll have fun and enjoy the support of your new work family – one of the five reasons you’ll love an apprenticeship with M&B.“I don’t like being in classrooms, they get me really frustrated”Our apprenticeship programmes recognise that every person learns differently and for a lot of people classrooms learning comes with its challenges. Each of our three apprenticeships are split between coursework and practical learning – so all the information you read you’ll then get to apply on your next shift. If you know that you learn best by doing, this is experiential learning and means an apprenticeship is made for you!“After my apprenticeship, I can go on to do level 3 which is more of the management side”Hannah tells us that one of the best bits about her apprenticeship was knowing that there was a higher qualification available after. Clearly, Hannah’s very career driven and if you too then an apprenticeship is the perfect opportunity to pick up some transferrable skills and earn while you learn.“Managing my own pub is my dream job”At M&B, we love to hear that our colleagues have big dreams and we’re beyond happy that our apprenticeship programmes will help them reach their long-term goals. We’ll invest in your training and development right from the beginning and you’ll have a trainer to guide you every step of the way. And if you don’t know what your dream job is or have a clue where you want to be in five years, don’t worry. We’ll help you figure out what your strengths are, which pub and restaurant job is right for you and show you how you can carve out a rewarding career at M&B. “At my age, I didn’t think I could do [an apprenticeship]”Hannah is 22-years-old but her preconception of an apprenticeship is that you have to be fresh out of school to do one. If you thought the same as Hannah you’re not alone, many people believe these programmes are made for young people and they wouldn’t gain as much from it if they’ve already started working. So, we’re setting the record straight right here – apprenticeships are for people of all ages, backgrounds and experience levels. And, with around 75% of apprentices remaining in employment after completing the programme, it’s a great way to kick-start your career.Begin your apprenticeship journey with M&BWe’re looking for more ambitious people like Hannah to join our apprenticeship programmes and with over 1,600 businesses around the UK M&B are sure to have the local job you’re looking for. Join us an apprentice and you’ll gain a qualification and a second family too! View our apprenticeships here or to hear more stories like Hannah’s, check our apprenticeship experiences.

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5 reasons you'll love an apprenticeship with Mitchells & Butlers

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Are you toying with the idea of doing an apprenticeship rather than going to university? Or maybe you’re already working but you think a qualification will boost your CV? Whatever stage you’re at in your career we want to help you make the right decision for your next steps. Yes, we might be biased, but we truly believe our apprenticeship programs are the bee’s knees. They give you the skills you need to succeed and - bonus -  you’ll even have fun along the way! Intrigued? Here are five reasons you'll love an apprenticeship with Mitchells & Butlers: You’ll receive support every step of the wayAn apprenticeship is extremely flexible. Each day is structured differently, and on the days where you have a shorter shift you’ve got the time to get your head down and stuck into your coursework. Managing your time between the two might sound like a juggling act, but this is what your trainer is there for. Don’t believe us?  Take it from Sophia, one of our apprentices, who told us about the highlights of her course: "The relationship I had with Ellis my trainer from the get-go. She was always there and ready to offer help and support." Sophia went on to tell us how the program empowered her to help her colleagues, even the ones who weren’t doing an apprenticeship. This supportive environment is just what we love to see at M&B.You'll gain a second familyOkay, it might sound cliché to say this but it’s really true. Don’t take our word for it though, here’s what Gina – bar and waiting apprentice – has to say: "We’re not a team, we’re a family" Our apprentices make life-long friends - and some have even been lucky enough to find love -at M&B so it really is so much more than a job. What’s more, having a good support system at work is one of the key ingredients for job satisfaction.There's a great balance between fun and hard workAnother key to being happy at work is finding something that is fun and rewarding, and if working with other people gives you your buzz then you’ll love a hospitality apprenticeship. You get to interact with new people every day and make sure that every guest’s experience is as memorable as the last. Knowing that someone has walked out of one of the M&B pubs, bars or restaurants with a beaming smile on their face because of your work… well it just doesn’t get much better than that!You earn while you learnUniversity or work? Learning or getting out there to earn money? There’s no need to choose between the two because an apprenticeship is designed so that you can learn while you earn. Your time will be split between completing coursework and then using that knowledge to help you at work. "I don’t like being in classrooms, they get me really frustrated" - Hannah, bar and waiting apprentice What makes an apprenticeship a great option for people like Hannah is that it’s a different way of learning and unlike school. Learning on the job can be much easier because you understand why the skills are so important and what situation you’ll need them in.But don’t let this fool you into thinking an apprenticeship is only for those between 16- and 18-years-old. With our apprenticeships, there’s no age limit and you can gain a lot from the program even if you’ve started working.It opens new doors for youPerhaps you’ve been working in  hospitality  and you’re ready for a challenge, or you’ve worked in a different industry and you think this could be an exciting adventure. Whatever’s brought you here, we’re glad it has because an apprenticeship at M&B is a great opportunity to learn something new and go after a passion of yours. Many of our apprentices have big dreams for their future. For some, it’s the goal of running their own pub while others are set on rising the ranks at Mitchells & Butlers. But for those who haven’t had their eureka moment that tells them what career path to follow, or for people who are still on the fence, there’s no need to worry because this is where we can help. Check out our blog - how to choose the right hospitality apprenticeship – to get an overview of the three different apprenticeships we have at M&B.Find an apprenticeship with M&BSo, we’ve convinced you that an apprenticeship at M&B is just the ticket for you - now all that’s left to do is start applying. We have a limited number of spaces on our apprenticeship programs so don’t miss out – check out our management apprenticeships or browse chef apprenticeships here.

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Whatever stage you’re at in your career we want to help you make the right decision for your next steps. Here's why we think our apprenticeships are the bees knees.

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