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Acorn winner 2007: Neil Rawlings

10 May 2007
Acorn winner 2007: Neil Rawlings

Age: 24
Position: Sous chef, Hilton Glasgow

Career to date

Rawlings began at the five-star Hilton Glasgow in 1999 as an apprentice chef. After a gap of one year, he returned to the hotel in 2003 as demi chef de partie. In his current position as sous chef at the hotel he is responsible for a brigade of 35 chefs and 15 stewards and oversees an F&B operation that generates £6m of revenue a year.

Why is he a winner?

At the age of just 24 Rawlings is responsible for the day-to-day running of an operation that spans two restaurants, 24-hour room service and a banqueting operation for 900 guests.

In addition to demonstrating flair in key areas such as ordering, forecasting and budgeting, Rawlings is highly organised and has proved himself to be an effective leader and a cool head in a crisis - for example, when he took on added responsibility last year in the run-up to the Christmas period to help fill the breach when the executive chef for the Glasgow cluster broke his arm.

Rawlings has also excelled in recruitment and selection for the kitchen team and in recent months he has been busy developing his people management skills. In addition to coaching the commis chefs, he has assisted with visits by school and college students around the site.

As a result of his career progression to date, Neil has proved to be an inspiration to the apprentices and new chefs at the hotel and he looks set for a rosy future in the industry.

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