Martin is one of the friendliest chaps you will ever meet and has been a part of the SMITHS
team for the past 6 years. He started his journey as a demichef
de partie. He eventually progressed to Chef de Partie then senior chef de partie and now has settled into his current role as a Sous Chef. He is no stranger to the phrase ‘hard work pays off’.
“SMITHS saw my drive and rewarded me. I like that they want you to progress within the company. It’s not just that at the end of the day. One of the key ingredients to a good working environment is if the team can all work together. And we can. We work hard, yet enjoy each other’s company. You know, we have banter.” he says with a grin. “Plus, I can be myself here. I don’t know if you knew this, but I sing all the time. I sing so much that my team sometimes joins in.”
His passion about being a Chef hasn’t changed for over 12 years “I will be doing this until the day I die. Oh… and I forgot to mention that I like that I get Sunday’s off!”
Rachel is yet another one of our star team members. She has been with us for 5 and a half years and started out as a waitress at our former Spitalfields location. There she worked hard and progressed to a manager position. When Spitalfields finally closed its doors she came to join the Smithfields team with gusto as the Dining Room manager. She too advocates the great opportunities that SMITHS as a brand shows its dedicated team members. “There is a lot of opportunity here at SMITHS. The company lets you grow, progress and develop; which is amazing. It’s one of the many reasons to work for SMITHS.”
Rachel has loved working here from the very beginning with one of the reasons being… “The team here is second to none. Everyone is really great.” As a manager who came from being a waitress she knows what her staff needs and goes through. Therefore she supports, cares and listens wholeheartedly.
And what does this awesome human do when she’s not being a superwoman? Well… she’s a sudoku master of course!
Simon who originally hails from Russia has been with SMITHS for 6 years now. He started his career path in Goodsin where he learned about all the beverages that we stock. The SMITHS brand appealed to him right from the start. “I loved the environment and couldn’t help but fall in love with the team as a whole”. His bubbly personality fit right in and soon was able to gain knowledge and progress. He honed his skills as he moved from each bar and eventually took up a position as Bar Supervisor at our Spitalfields location. He later left to join the flagship venue where he now Supervises the Ground Floor and Craft Bars as well as assists with the beverage management.
“I believe that if you work hard, are loyal with a good attitude then you too can progress at ‘SMITHS’. I feel like they not only reward their team but also listen and help when it’s needed. I mean, look at me! I started out from the bottom and have worked my way up. I know that I can achieve, learn and grow even more. Having a great support system here makes it a happy environment to work in. I for sure wouldn’t want to work anywhere else!”
We asked him if there was anything else that he liked to share and his short but to the point response was…. “I’m single!” So… any takers?
There are certain people when you meet them that have an effect on you and Maria is one of those people. Her calmness and positivity oozes out of her, that you can’t help but emulate it. She’s been with SMITHS for the last three years. Her first position was at the Spitalfields location as the Cafe Manager in which she also did training sessions. She then moved to the Flagship building where she was presented with a unique job role as hosting and banking/safe counting for all the floors.
“You see, I had a slipped disc at the time and wasn’t able to lift things or be as mobile as I always used to be. I’m a very active person! I would do hula hooping and poi practically every day not to mention cycling everywhere. However even despite my little set back theyvalued me enough, to the point of helping accommodate my situation. For me feeling appreciated is the most important thing and SMITHS not only appreciated me but acknowledged my hard work. I can’t tell you how much that means. If you shine, they take notice and want you to continue shining even more. They nurture your growth and are very approachable. Honestly, it’s a great place to work and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else!”
Ben started at ‘SMITHS’ a year and a half ago under an apprenticeship. He worked his way through the Ground floor cafe, Dining Room and finally the Top Floor which is where he decided to settle in permanently. Ben was able to learn each kitchen and take those skills forward to the next. Now he makes sure everything is prepped, that all the stations are kept tidy and that there’s a smooth running of service on the Top Floor. “It was great to see the inner workings of how each kitchen runs. After learning so much I want to keep going. If someone wanted to work here I would say go for it. If you put in the work, you do get acknowledged and progress further. The environment is more relaxed than what you would think working behind the scenes would be. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s easy work. It’s not. You have to be dedicated and disciplined. But it does take a load off when you know that your workplace isn’t as highly strung as some other kitchens out there.”
We asked Ben our last question…”Can you tell us something that we don’t know about you?” “Huh…good question! Well…” Ben responded in a pondering fashion. “ I guess it would have to be that I took Ballroom and Latin dancing for 4 years at University.”