Acorn winners 2016: Edward Fitzpatrick, 25

01 July 2016
Acorn winners 2016: Edward Fitzpatrick, 25

Operations manager, Chewton Glen, New Milton, Hampshire

Nominated by Mark Bevan, general manager, Chewton Glen

Proudest moment "Joining the team at Chewton Glen and being swiftly promoted."

Greatest inspiration "Chef Michael Caines, because his passion, drive and forward vision is truly unbelievable."

Ambition "My short-term aim is to develop the new cookery school brand at Chewton Glen. Long-term, I aim to become a general manager of a five-red-star property by 30."

After moving to Chewton Glen, Fitzpatrick was promoted to assistant manager then, in late 2014, food and beverage (F&B) manager. Keen to harness his talents, the hotel has since elevated his role to operations manager - still overseeing F&B, but allowing him to continue to influence the operation as a whole. At the age of 25, then, he manages a team of 60, delivering £6m in annual revenue.

It's no wonder they want to keep him involved in F&B. Over the past 18 months, Fitzpatrick's strategic purchasing and efficiencies have boosted profitability by 17%. He has also championed F&B training by writing a three-stage personalised training plan. And he has championed five-minute team coffee chats, so issues or ideas can be discussed.

His contribution to the 96% guest satisfaction score is undisputed. He gives his mobile number to regular guests and those who need special attention and is uncomplaining when disturbed at 4am to deal with a request.

And he has even found time to raise money for industry charity Hospitality Action by joining Chewton Glen's team for Le Tour de Cuisine, a gruelling 100-mile cycling challenge.

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