Chef Apprentice Gets a Taste for Top Job

On Tuesday 4th March, to mark National Apprenticeship Week 2014, chef apprentice Michael Donovan, 28, from Hilton Avisford Park swapped jobs with Hilton Avisford Park hotel’s manager – Darren Walsh – to learn more about the wider hospitality business. Michael spent half the day in meetings with various teams and Head of departments. The second half of the day was spent shadowing Darren Walsh, gaining experience and insight into the top job.

Michael started his Apprenticeship last May and has thoroughly enjoyed the experience to date. He said:

“Previously I worked for a private Pub chain working my way up from being a Kitchen Porter but was really interested in a career in hospitality. I found out about the Apprenticeship through an online recruitment agency. I’m so pleased I did it. It’s given me so much more confidence in my abilities. After my Apprenticeship I hope to further my career within Hilton.”

Hilton Worldwide Apprenticeships have been enhanced with Master classes, Development Workshops and Day in the Life work shadowing activities. All apprentices are urged to take up as many learning and development opportunities as possible throughout their training – and the manager job swap is no exception. 

"Today apprentice, tomorrow General Manager. Who knows what could happen?" - Michael Donovan

Michael adds: “I know that managing a hotel is a huge task. There are so many elements of the operation that need coordinating to ensure the very best guest experience. The job swap has been an eye opener to say the least and has inspired my own hospitality career. Today apprentice, tomorrow General Manager. Who knows what could happen?”

Darren Walsh, hotel manager at Hilton Avisford Park hotel, commented:

“Michael should be very proud of his achievements. He’s shown excellent initiative throughout his Apprenticeship to date and, through continued learning and development, has proven to me he is more than capable of achieving his career goals.” 

We actively encourage apprentices to find out about all the other roles within the business and how each team works with one another. This will make them more valuable team members and allows them to contribute more to the Hotel and influence changes across the group.” 

The Hilton Worldwide National Apprenticeship Chef Academy, delivered by national training provider and hospitality specialist Lifetime Training, was named Best Chef Strategy 2013 by the Springboard Awards for Excellence.

Four Apprenticeship cohorts are taken on at Hilton Worldwide every year. For more details please speak to a Lifetime Training adviser on 0870 120 1207.

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