Part of an impressive team

Whittlebury Hall

1st September 2019

Recruitment & Training

Whittlebury Hall

SOMEWHERE like Whittlebury Park - which has so much to offer in terms of accommodation, events, food from fine dining to afternoon tea, golf and luxury spa - needs a well-organised and customer-focused team to keep everything running smoothly. Whittlebury Park takes pride in employing, training and developing its staff to ensure guests and visitors get the best possible service. Here, we speak to three key players in the Whittlebury Park team about what their roles involve.

 

Sue - Whittlebury Park's Afternoon Tea Supervisor

What do you enjoy most about your job?

My customers are the best part of my day; I genuinely look forward to welcoming people and giving them a great experience. We serve a range of people from couples enjoying a quiet afternoon to large groups of hen parties. Whatever the group size, I do my best to be attentive but not overpowering.

What is a typical day like?

When I arrive, I will check how many tables I have booked. Then I'll polish the cutlery and get the tables set up. I serve behind the bar before my first guests arrive and when they are here, I take them to their table, have a chat and get their drinks. We offer unlimited tea and coffee and I am quite good at guessing when guests need more without them asking, which has been commented on!

What qualities do you need to work in a Food & Beverage role?

Good product knowledge is essential, so you can be helpful and informative to guests. It can be busy, but if you go the extra mile in such a customer-facing role, the job satisfaction is brilliant. Many people have remembered me by name and even sent me Thank You cards. Other comments, such as about my personable approach and willingness to make their day special have been fed back to me too. You also have to be organised and preparation is key, as guest expectations are high.

 

 

Bethany - Whittlebury Park's Spa Guest Relations Manager

How long have you worked at Whittlebury?

I've been here just over a month and it's been great! The industry itself is one I am very familiar with as I have worked within spas and hotels in a customer-facing role for seven years. I'm a qualified beauty therapist, which is helpful as I have lots of knowledge which I can share with guests, such as recommending treatments or products.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I love helping guests and resolving things. There's something really great about going home and knowing that I have made a difference to someone's day. I am a very practical person, which is good as 85 per cent of my job is out on the 'floor', so although I am part of the spa team, my role is primarily guest-experience led.

What's a typical day like?

They truly are never the same as it depends how busy we are. First thing in the morning, I will check my emails. Then I head downstairs to meet and greet at guests at the leisure and spa reception until around 11am. Then I'll check my emails again briefly and from midday until 3pm I am hosting the lunch sittings. At these points, when I am customer facing, I introduce myself and let guests know that they can ask me questions at any point - which they do and I love that part of my job! Then from 3pm until 4pm I am at my desk again until Sunset Spa greetings. If we are really busy, I will also help at hotel reception, as I am new I want to assist where I can in different teams, I find that this is a very beneficial way to learn about the business.

 

 

Kyle - Enquiry Specialist

How long have you worked at Whittlebury?

I have been working at Whittlebury for five years in September. I started whilst on my apprenticeship scheme when I worked in different departments including Food & Beverage, Reception, Conference & Events and Housekeeping.

What were you doing before working at Whittlebury?

I was working at Whittlebury part-time within the Food & Beverage department whilst at school, then I started an NVQ apprenticeship at 17 in Multi-Skilled Management and have been here ever since.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Throughout my career at Whittlebury Park, I have worked with different departments and I have enjoyed being part of teams that can make a real difference, as they have all been customer facing. Another reason why I enjoy my job is the impact I can have on guests and clients. I strive to make their day by going one step further to help them and seeing them happy with that extra effort is very rewarding.

What is a typical day like?

In my current job role as an Enquiry Specialist, I go through our email enquiries and speak to the clients themselves about their requests, and then propose these to the team. Following that, I load the events onto our system. Alongside my current role, I am on a training programme to become an Event Planner so I am also shadowing that team so I can eventually take responsibility for client proposals.

Whittlebury Hall