Graduate Storeys: Our first month with BaxterStorey

Starting this month, our graduate trainee managers will be sharing their experiences on our Graduate Programme. Follow their journey in their monthly blogs as they learn all about our business. This month Anna and Emily share what they have been up to:

 

Anna Vaughton

After completing my International Hospitality Degree at Oxford Brookes University, I was eager to put my knowledge and skills into practice and to get stuck in to the world of work. I have always been a massive foodie – I remember scrolling through BaxterStorey’s Instagram page seeing posts about baking bread using potato skins and I thought, that’s the company I want to work for.

I was keen to develop my strengths in all areas of the business, and BaxterStorey’s Graduate Programme gives you the opportunity to experience various exciting job roles. It wasn’t until my first week on the job, I realised how much there was to learn over the next twelve months!

The first month I spent working in the kitchen, in the salad and deli bar, breakfast, stove and hospitality sections. It’s been a real eye opener, seeing how the kitchen ticks and I’ve certainly had to learn self-control when it comes to tasting everything. I have a real sweet tooth so found it hard to resist the coconut and jam flapjack. I have also had the opportunity to do some baking of my own, from lemon drizzle tarts to chocolate marble sponge cake.

My manager Julia has taken me under her wing, I’ve learnt so much from her already, from health and safety procedures, due diligence, effective team management and the importance of attention to detail. Next month I’m moving to front of house so I’m excited to see what they have in store for me.

 

Emily McLoughlin

I began the Graduate Programme with three fun-filled weeks spent in the kitchen. When I was given my schedule for the first week, I quickly realised how busy the next few months were going to be.

I have been working alongside sous chef Kris on the salad section and practicing my piping technique in pastry. Every day I’m learning new skills, from completing food safety paperwork, to understanding the importance of communication in a team. I must admit, I soon realised how hard the chefs in our business work to ensure service runs smoothly every day. I’ll be honest, trying to keep up was exhausting!

My second month has been spent in retail management, managing the café and dining room. The front of house team is brilliant – we have such a laugh together. I’m working closely with my general manager Dan, helping with health and safety audits and themed marketing. This has been my first management experience and I’m loving it so far.

Outside location, the training courses are coming thick and fast. It’s great that we’re exposed to every aspect of the business, from allergens and managing safety, to barista skills. The training provides great opportunities to catch up with the other grads and compare experiences. Everyone’s journey has been so different so it’s good to be able to share experiences and learn from each other.

In the next few weeks I’ll be supporting at the Regional Chef of the Year final and food festival, which will be great fun. There are so many exciting opportunities to get stuck into.

Sharon and Stephanie have been great mentors, offering me support as and when I need it. I’m loving being a part of the BaxterStorey family and can’t wait to see what the rest of the year has in store!

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