I’ve owned my own company for 7 years, close to 8.
I’ve worked in it for 4 (well, full time without being thrown in jail, getting cramps all night from running service from dusk till dawn every weekend as well as a 9-5 (5-9 job 7 days a week) & skiving the odd sunny day -‘ sorry boss’, I’ve turned a shocking pub into a cracking one, then int0 2, 3, 4, 5 soon to be 6……)
Its been the hardest 4 years of my professional life.
Its also been the most enjoyable 4 years of my professional life.
(If everything goes to s*!t tomorrow, I’ve done it, I’ve built a business to be proud of…until it goes to s*!t of course….then I’ll say its been shocking, can’t believe I did it, Yummy what?)
But, i’m the oldest in Yummy….with the exception of Mummy P and Daddy P (Anthony’s mum and dad) who ‘technically’ are ‘contractors’ – so, I’m still the old git. If my old mum was still cleaning the pub (as she did at the beginning) i’d be the half oldest in Yummy by default, but I’m not, I’m the old git at 37 years old. I am however, the most fun. This is my blog and I’ll write it as I see fit. I’m a feekin’ loon. Head of Being Awesome? Come on!? I should be a Co-founder / company director (Propel Chicago delegates list) Q. who on earth has the talent to be Head of Being Awesome in print? A. Me. It’s my blog :)
To say I actually turned “professional” at 18 is a lie, in reality at 13 years old, if you can call a 13 year old; spotty, incredibly handsome (for his age) 13 year old a professional I was mixing it up in the horticultural world (moving stuff around in a garden nursery), sold stuff (worked for the old man in the auction rooms in Brighton, moving stuff around)……thats 25 years….of talent. In reality I would, should, could, run my own company.
Everyone believes they can run their own business.
In reality, they’re wrong. With the exception of a few.
Even Richard B. aint doing it alone. Nor is Sugar, or Paphitis or Cowel, they’re all doing it with help.
It takes talent.
It actually takes guts, and it takes a sheeeeeeeeeeed load of bravado.
A special kind of non consuming, non emotional, non self promotional, non idiotic, non advantageous, non self consuming, non self profiling, non…. thesaurus kind of explanation (not that I had to use a thesaurus, well, sort of ) talent. To run your own business. You need belief & luck, a shed load a’luck.
You also need mates.
I have two amazing boys by my side. Together we have built an amazing business to be proud of and we’re still building…
This is Theo.
He’s one of my boys, but he’s not one of the boys I’ve built Yummy with, christ, he’s only 13 months old! He’s a boy I’ve developed during Yummy…not that I had much to do with it, most of the ‘development’ was taken care of by Lucy…
…However, he’s the future of Yummy Pub Co.
He’s my boy.
He’s not the future because he’s my boy & we’re a family business. Technically, we’re not a family business. We all have different mummies and daddies, but in reality we are, we’re a family. My boys are my boys. We started this business as partners, we’re running it as brothers. This squidge (above) is the future, because he’s my customer, and future pot wash. This was a snap chat of him during a 121 catch up with my right hand girl, one I couldn’t be without and one I won’t be without as long as I treat her well (I could actually pay her in Space Invader crisps) . Ellie is my Loony marketing Exec. She was still travelling between London and Surrey when we were scheduled for our 121, so Theo had some fun looking at himself on the computer.
He had a lot of fun.
Without Ellie my days would be missing something special, that little bit of ‘loon’. Don’t get me wrong, she’s a total pain in the arse on 99% of the occasions, but she knows that. What makes her special is that she cares, really, really, really, genuinely cares about Yummy & I love that, its rare, in most businesses. Those businesses would give their right arm, left arm and a leg for the loyalty that Ellie gives Yummy. That’s why she’ll be running it one day, or maybe something else, maybe a hippy commune, or a weird fashion boutique you never know, pyjamas are in right now, they could stay on trend?
(print this and show it to your mum kid, black and white, or even colour print don’t lie, even in the North…)
The kids done good & she has an amazing future ahead of her.
But she’s not unique (well she kinda is, but not, sorta thing), she’s not alone in the love of Yummy & its terrifying…..
They’re everywhere these, crazy people. Yummy is doing something that nobody else can quite grasp, its motivating talent, it’s inspiring, its creating confidence, not in a business, but in people, my people, because, terrifyingly we really do care about our people. Its not a mission statement or a memorandum or some other poxy ‘strategy’ it’s fact. That has only really come home to roost with me in the past week months as I recruit new people in, we are a true people business, I love it.
Part of why I’m doing / running Yummy is because I can see my kids, they’re a massive part of my life, why would I spend 15 – 20 years seeing them at weekends, the odd night in the week? I don’t have too. I’ve got a work / life balance although I’m always working, I genuinely am. I wake up thinking pubs, I go to sleep thinking pubs. Lucy called it an obsession last night, I call it a passion, but it gives me balance, because I never stop, I actually appreciate what I have.
I keep reading this crap about a chef skills shortage, the industry is f*%ked… not in Yummy its not. I’ve got some of the most amazing talent here. Giles, you missed a trick. When you have an interview, you come to meet the Head of Being Awesome, or you can get a nice easy job, close to home, you’ll just, in 8 – 12 months be wanting more, I’ll be watching, I’ll guarantee it. That’s the issue.
Chefs that jump.
Chefs that worry about what’s ‘going to happen’ if…
Chefs that don’t talk….
Chefs that think they’re the chosen ones….
Cooks that think they’re chefs…
Its total shite.
Creating a menu, serving a menu is an art. Those that think it’s a slog should get out, find another profession. My chefs are artists, not work horses, but they need to learn how to look after my people. Actually, everyone in my business apart from the three of us, needs to learn how to look after people, my people, with a few exceptions. They’re the business, not the poxy buildings, the new shiny things, my people are Yummy, the issue is I can’t be there to cuddle everyone of them, its time for everyone to cuddle.
That’s business. A great business is a people business.
Chef’s shortage? Bollocks, I’ll breed them, I’ll inspire them, Jay will train them (I won’t literally breed all of them, this one can pickle, grow tomatoes, strawberries, runner beans, ‘cook’ crispy cornflakes for breakfast, but give him a break, he’s only 5, his brother is 1, I have no intention of breeding more….) . For the big boys out there wanting to chuck food on plates, not knowing where it’s truly from, what farm grew what, that the next opening is actually the most important thing, crack on. You’re missing the bigger picture, we’ll grow organically.
We’ll inspire great chefs of the future.
Nurturing talent, thats the greatest quality of my business, the thing I’m most proud of.
Yummy has roots.