M Restaurants has launched M-indful days to give its employees the opportunity to take a break and recharge.
The days, which are given in addition to annual holiday, are the brainchild of operations director Andre Mannini (pictured), who was shortlisted for the Cateys 2018 Manager of the Year award.
Mannini said: "M-indful Days are part of a broader initiative. We have a focus on mental health and are making sure employees have these days at their disposal to control stress levels. They're not holiday, they are completely separate, and can be used for anything: needing to rest, knowing a loved one needs you for some reason or a friend is not doing to well. Things you normally would not plan holidays for."
Contracted employees have been given four M-indful days a year, although Mannini would like to see this increased.
He said the reaction from staff has been "great" adding "I can see a lot of appreciation, it's a small thing but makes a big difference".
In a bid to look after its staff M Restaurants has also given managers increased holiday with the proviso they have a three week break during the year to "completely switch off". It has also given staff access to an anonymous counselling app.
Mannini said such steps are much needed in the industry. He added: "There's a silent revolution happening in our industry and it's very much needed. Our industry needs to better itself and make itself more appealing, especially to the younger generation. It needs to leave behind outdated systems and management styles that are prehistoric: the bullying, belittling and shouting. Hospitality has historically been so far behind and it's for us to try and pioneer a way to create a better hospitality industry so it will become as appealing as other fields to a young workforce."