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Acorn winners 2017: Afees Bello

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Written by:
Acorn winners 2017: Afees Bello

Back of house manager, the Beaumont, London

Nominated by Jannes Soerensen, general manager, the Beaumont

Proudest moment “The induction session at Brasserie Zédel, where I sat with people who were greater, smarter, wiser and older than me, while listening to Jeremy King’s address. I still get goosebumps thinking back.”

Greatest inspiration “Jeremy King. Before I started, I didn’t know much about hospitality, but his values are now embedded into my management style. He appreciates that even the lowliest members of staff can make the biggest difference, which is a rare quality.”

Ambition “To be the best at everything I do and to be the best version of myself. I am still learning about my capabilities and enjoy taking on challenges, hoping one day to be at the top.”

When it comes to qualities such as being quick to learn and having a positive attitude, Afees Bello is hard to beat. But it is his ability to revolutionise his role that impresses the most.

Bello joined Corbin & King in 2012 as assistant back of house manager for the opening of Brasserie Zédel – a step up from his previous role as goods receiving executive at Hilton London Heathrow Airport Terminal 5. He was quickly promoted to back of house manager, overseeing a team of 40 and responsible for a monthly budget of £85,000.

At only 24, Bello was hungry for further development and took up his current position at the Beaumont. He set up his department from scratch and its stability is reflected in the fact agency staff represent only 25%.

Since joining Corbin & King, Bello has become involved in building contracts, taught himself to read spreadsheets and manage the P&L, taken responsibility for consumable lines, wages and equipment, and manages the maintenance log.

He also implemented waste management measures, which has reduced monthly costs from £1,700 to less than £1,000, and renegotiated all F&B contracts and back of house cleaning contracts, achieving savings of 15% and more than 20%, respectively.

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