Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

Mark Blacker – My Worst Job

24 November 2009 by
Mark Blacker – My Worst Job

Mark Blacker is the marketing manager at Charlton House.

What was your worst job?

Working for a small bakery when I was 20. I had trained as a chef for two years at what is now Thames Valley University (City & Guilds 706) and worked as a chef at the Hinds Head hotel in Bray, Berkshire.

I don't know what prompted me to take the bakery job. I was taken on initially as a "dough boy" and had to do all of the donkey work, like carrying sacks of flour, but after three years, I was making bread, croissants, Danish pastries, doughnuts etc.

What was so bad about it?

My social life was in tatters. I started at 4am three days a week. At 20 you just want to be out partying, but I was always the one who had to go home to get a few hours' sleep. Thursday and Friday nights were the worst because I started work at midnight, so I used to go straight from partying to work.

What did you learn from the job?

Few chefs get a good grounding in making bread so those skills will stay with me forever. When I have guests around for dinner I still make my own bread rolls.

But beyond the obvious craft skills gained, the greatest life lesson was that I had to be reliable and dependable. That bread had to be made and I had to be there, day in, day out. It was very hard but it taught me a lot about commitment.

What is the best bit of your current role?

Every day is different. I get involved in a huge variety of projects, from designing and managing websites to menu design, organising exhibitions, e-mail campaigns, brochures and newsletters.

My chef background has really helped me in this role because our chefs know that I understand food.

What's next?

There's never a dull moment at Charlton House. As the company continues to grow there are more and more marketing opportunities to be explored.

My ultimate goal would be to take on a more strategic marketing role.

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Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.


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