Vas Lazarou is the operations manager at Pabulum Catering.
What was your worst job?
It has to be when I was working as a chef at a nursing home in London. I was with another national contract catering company at the time and thought it might make a useful addition to my CV. How wrong could one person be?
What was so bad about it?
The small matter of my customers dying on me! On one particular occasion I'd baked what I thought was a wonderful cake for a resident, John, who was about to celebrate his 101st birthday party. I was so proud of it and I just couldn't wait to go into work the next day to present my masterpiece. Unfortunately, John passed away peacefully the night before. I was so upset because I'd got to know him really well, and loved hearing his stories about his family. I left the job about a month later as I just couldn't cope any more.
What did you learn from the job?
That, as a nation, we should care more for our senior citizens. We owe it to them, considering the sacrifices they have made for us. I certainly now make more time for my own parents and my elderly neighbours, something I don't mind admitting I didn't do before. We will all be in their shoes one day so why not look after them in the same way we would like to be treated at their age?
What do you enjoy most about your current role?
The people. They are a special bunch and they all go out of their way to support each other. It's a rare thing, especially in our industry. Working for Pabulum is unquestionably the highlight of my career to date, especially working for my immediate boss, from whom I have learnt a huge amount. I also enjoy the variety of the role (no two days are ever the same and that keeps you on your toes), as well as bringing other people in my team along and watching them develop successful careers of their own.
To continue developing our offering while at the same time going all out to exceed our clients' expectations. On a personal level, I would like to expand my area and if possible add some very large sites to my portfolio. My ultimate aim is to stay with Pabulum until I retire and perhaps, like John, have a few tales to tell.