Take your hospitality career to the countryside
Imagine working in a location where your equivalent of an office view is the rolling hills that make up the fine British countryside. Where you get to breathe in that fresh air and where your commute to work takes you through the winding country lanes. Sounds idyllic right? Well, that’s exactly what you can get with a job at Mitchells and Butlers (M&B) at one of our many locations tucked away in the more peaceful and tranquil spots across the UK.
In fact, that’s one of James Hicks’ favourite things about working at The Shy Horse in Chessington. As a General Manager at one of our charming country Vintage Inns pubs, James welcomes guests who are passing through from all over.
Read on to hear why James loves working in a rural location and why it could be the perfect spot to take your career:
1) Why did you join the company?
I was looking for a career in pubs and restaurants, and I knew the M&B brands well from going as a guest. I knew it would be a great place to work, and I recognised there was the potential to progress at M&B as long as I put the effort in.
I started 11 years ago in a sister pub as a kitchen porter doing Saturday shifts. Within two years, I was promoted to kitchen manager. Then I saw an opportunity to support the front of house (FOH) team, and before I knew it, I was an assistant manager. Since then, I’ve steadily built my FOH career and was appointed general manager this year.
2) What is the best thing about working in a beautiful rural area?
We get a lot of new faces passing through due to our location. There is nothing better for our guests than stopping for a nice hearty meal, sitting by a warm fire, and watching the sun go down over the hills. We're surrounded by nature and the countryside, making it the perfect spot to relax.
3) What does an average day at work look like for you?
I start by entering the business from the guests’ perspective. I stand in the car park and make sure my business looks great from the outside. I move to the inside and do the same. I light the fires so we get that warm cosy and warm feel, ensure the flowers look bright and welcoming on the tables, and then I welcome and brief the team when they arrive. We consider the business performance, talk about our daily specials, and I find out how their weeks are going. I will then float around the business, spot-checking the team, speaking to the guests, and always think about how I can inject some fun into the day. When it's time to leave, I take a minute to watch the sky turn pink as the sun dips over the hills behind the farm opposite.
4) What do you love most about your job?
I love passing my knowledge on to the team. After all, they’ll be running the show one day. I want to give as much guidance to our future leaders as I can, so they have everything they need to help the business succeed.
5) How do you spend your time when you're not at work?
I spend my time with my two children, who are five and eight years old. They keep me on my toes as we go hunting Pokémon and exploring nature.
6) Why would you recommend a job at M&B at any of our more rural locations?
Because they are surrounded by beauty – you might wake up on the wrong side of the bed in the morning, but then you see the view. We have so much nature around us. We get deer in the car park and gardens, hedgehogs that live in the bushes, and a robin that comes to say hello most days.
Are you ready to take your career to the country?
So, do you like the sound of working in one of our charming country locations? At Mitchells and Butlers, we have over 1,600 pubs, bars and restaurants scattered across the UK, meaning your local M&B business is closer than you might think. Browse our countryside jobs and check out the dos and don’ts when writing your hospitality CV for our top tips.
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Would you describe yourself as driven, friendly or perhaps a multitasker? Maybe you’re the go-to person in your friend group for organising get togethers, or perhaps you’re famous for your Hollywood film-worthy pep talks. If you tick any of these boxes, you might make a great restaurant or pub manager. But what will the average day look like and what can you expect to be thrown at you on your shift? Take a look below at the rundown of what it’s like to work as a restaurant or pub manager. Spoiler alert – you won’t actually get anything thrown at you.You get to bring out the best in your teamDid you know that 9 in 10 managers started their hospitality career in an entry-level role? As a general manager, you’ll be the key piece in the puzzle, helping to build a business to be proud of and being there every step of the way as your team grows and smashes targets. Remember that manager who always recognised when you went the extra mile for a guest and never failed to sing your praises? Well now it’s your chance to do the same, only this time for your own team. The satisfaction you’ll get from helping apprentices find their feet will (almost) compare to the joy of eating a Toby Carvery roast. You gain a work familyIf you thrive in a fast-paced environment and love nothing more than working around other people, then a restaurant or pub manager job will be right up your street. The moment you step through the doors you’ll learn to embrace your second job title – Head of the Work Family. You’ll keep your team safe and remind them why they love coming to work every day, serving up positive vibes with a side of banter. So maybe you’ll get a reputation for your cringe jokes but your team wouldn’t have you any other way. Plus, positive work cultures are more productive meaning you’ll get to see your staff shine as bright as the wine glasses they’re polishing.You’re the friendly face that greets the guestsWhat’s better than being known as the person who makes everyone feel welcome? Well, getting to do it each day as part of your job is the real cherry on top. You’ll greet every guest with one of your award-winning smiles and make them feel instantly at home so that every visit is as special as the last. Whether you’re managing a restaurant, pub or bar, great customer experience is one of your top priorities. As a manager, when you’re not helping your team or checking that every meal is plated to perfection you get the pleasure of catching up with the regulars.You’ll wear many hatsDo you like a job where you have to think on your feet? Whether you take on a general manager or assistant manager role, you’ll act as the go-between, keeping the waiting staff, bar staff and the kitchen team all working in sync and making sure service is seamless so that no one has to go without their chocolate fudge cake. If your friends and family would describe you as the glue that holds everyone together then this part of the job will be second nature to you.Even though you’ll have to think on your feet, don’t be fooled into believing you’ll be rushed off them all day. Working as a manager at Mitchells & Butlers, you’ll find yourself making last-minute reservations for our guests organising rotas, handling customer enquiries and showing off how business-minded you are when completing your sales reports. And if you give it your all when wearing each of your hats, you might just have what it takes to become an area manager.Find your next restaurant and pub manager job with usAt Mitchells & Butlers, the sky is the limit when it comes to your career because working with us is about more than just a job. We have 13 brands and over 1,600 businesses across the UK and we believe in investing in our colleagues. Whether serving up steaks at Miller & Carter or finding the perfect table for guests at Premium Country Pubs, you'll get to flex all your skills and pick up more as you go. If you bring the can-do attitude, we’ll provide the support and award-winning training to help you reach your ambitions. Make sure to sign up to job alerts so your the first to know about our next assistant manager or general manager opportunity.
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When you think of a pub and restaurant job you probably first imagine a chef in their white hat – or toque if we’re being fancy. But of course, there are also the waiters and waitresses, bar staff and general managers who are delivering excellent customer service whilst busying themselves behind the scenes too.To help you decide which restaurant job is right for you we’ve put together the different ingredients for success you’ll need for each role. Read on to discover which exciting career you could carve out for yourself:Kitchen assistantA kitchen assistant’s role boils down to food prep and keeping serving areas clean and safe. Sounds straightforward but the day-to-day tasks will change often enough to keep you on your toes. Whether you find yourself working in a trendy city bar like All Bar One, a well-loved Toby Carvery or a restaurant like Miller & Carter, known for their signature ‘steak experience’, a typical day as a kitchen assistant may also involve taking deliveries and organising the stock room.In this support role, you’ll pick up tips and tricks from chefs who’ve been in the business most of their lives so it’s a great stepping stone to work your way up to more senior restaurant jobs. With little culinary experience needed, a kitchen assistant job is a great chance to learn the ropes and feed off the atmosphere behind the scenes of a restaurant.If you’re a good team player, can listen and follow instructions carefully and have a passion for food then a kitchen assistant job could be just right for you.Head chefWith some years of experience under your belt where you’ve proven that you not only know your way around the kitchen but shown have strong leadership skills, you’re ready to climb to the next spot on the chef’s career ladder. The main responsibilities of a head chef job are to oversee the daily operations of the kitchen and lead your team to thrive in any situation.Most chefs learn on the job, so formal qualifications aren’t always needed to show you can stand the heat in the kitchen, but they do strengthen expertise and can help you climb the ranks faster. Instead, a strong skill-set is much more important if you want to prove yourself as a head chef – with leadership and delegation being the most essential. Aside from this, you’ll need excellent culinary skills, a good knowledge of produce and top-notch time management.The Office of National Statistics revealed in 2017 that women only accounted for 17% of head chef jobs and we’re working hard to tip this scale. This is why at M&B we’re proud to promote that hospitality is not just a man’s business.Waiting staffAs a waiting staff, it’s ultimately your job to keep guests happy, but there’s a lot more to it than that. In this customer service role you’ll pick up crystal clear communication skills and learn how to handle any crisis like a pro. These are just a few of the 5 transferrable skills you learn in a waiting staff job.If you love going the extra mile for customers, thrive in a fast-paced environment or want to build your self-confidence then a waiting staff job could be a great career move for you. But in case you’re still undecided read our 10 stories that every waiting team understands.Bar staffIf you’re someone who is passionate about customer service and building relationships then look no further than a bar staff job. Small talk with the customers is just as much a part of the job as pouring the pints and shaking the cocktails. Plus, the different people who walk through the door each day are a chance for you to really mix things up.Like those in most restaurant jobs, bar staff are experts are multitasking. While keeping up the conversation you’ll need to remember the customer’s order, keep tabs on who’s next and make sure the bar is stocked up. A bar staff job can be challenging at times but it’s one of the most fun and lively jobs to develop your resilience and organisation skills.Hear from some of M&B’s very own employees what’s the best thing about being part of a bar team.General managerDid you know that 9 in 10 general managers working in a restaurant joined the industry in an entry-level role? Climbing the career ladder gives a deep insight into the workings of a restaurant, something which can be hard to understand without experience in the industry.General managers in restaurants are responsible for keeping a lid on everything. On the surface, a general manager’s role is to bring the team together while ensuring quality control and customer satisfaction. Behind the scenes, you’ll be responsible for recruiting new team members, overseeing their training, organising deliveries, being aware of new and changing regulations, budget control and keeping your team safe by enforcing high health and safety standards.For some, a general manager role is the ultimate restaurant job because their team feels like a second family. You’re in charge of keeping team morale high but it’s also your duty to watch over everyone’s safety, meaning this job can bring you a great sense of pride and satisfaction.Learn more about a career in the restaurant and pub industryAt Mitchells and Butlers, a restaurant job is more than just a job – it’s a career. It’s our goal to find talented and enthusiastic people who want to grow with our brand and share in our values. Whichever pub and restaurant job you choose we’ll make sure you feel a valued member of the team and get recognised for what you do.Find out more about the rewarding careers we can offer you at Mitchells and Butlers by browsing our kitchen jobs here or explore our other roles.