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Acorn winners 2016: Marta Chwiloc-Filoc, 28

01 July 2016
Acorn winners 2016: Marta Chwiloc-Filoc, 28

Catering manager, Lexington, London

Nominated by Katharine Lewis, director, Lexington

Proudest moment

Greatest inspiration "My mentor Emma Shutler, a past Acorn. I admire her work ethic and passion for great food and service. Her management style is worth learning from as she has a positive can-do attitude, is approachable and has a clear decision-making strategy."

Ambition "I would love to become an operations manager, but my long-term dream is to open my own café."

Despite having no formal hospitality training, Marta Chwiloc-Filoc's potential was clear. Within a year of joining Lexington she was promoted to hospitality supervisor, managing a team of four.

Her leadership qualities meant that by 2014 she had skipped up the ladder to her current role as catering manager at the Ofcom contract, managing a team of 11. The team cater for the 1,100 people on site, handling 600 transactions a day and generating sales of £650,000 a year. This challenging site has a tight budget and had a high staff turnover. Chwiloc-Filoc, however, has turned it around, increasing turnover by 30% and reducing absenteeism by 62%. The client has subsequently renewed the contract.

There are numerous examples of how Chwiloc-Filoc has introduced innovations and little tweaks. Moving the vending machines to a more visible location has increased sales by almost 50%.

Last year, Chwiloc-Filoc was selected for Lexington's Aspiring Leadership Programme. She gives up her own time to mentor new graduates, she drives graduate recruitment and helps to run Lexington's graduate assessment day.

In addition to her day job, Chwiloc-Filoc has helped manage projects for Lexington. These include supporting Lexington's Barista of the Year Competition and catering for 100 at Hotelympia.

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