Nurture staff to grow business

Ongoing training can have multiple benefits, say firms

Operators could be missing a trick when it comes to running a successful venue if they neglect staff training.

016_shutterstock_231576676That was the message from training providers contacted by SLTN, who said ongoing training can increase staff retention – and the increased knowledge and confidence it brings can benefit sales.
Beyond the mandatory training required by the Licensing Act and other legislation, encouraging staff to complete additional courses can pay dividends, firms say.
Martin Duffy, managing director of Solid Liquids, said that developing staff and building profits go “hand in hand”.
“A good operator will realise the value in making a training culture mandatory in their business,” said Duffy. He added that training should be “wide ranging” and “flexible” to allow people to learn at their own pace.
Director of Twist Training, Joanne Worrall, said that “more and more operators are investing in training above what’s legally required”.
She added that those who do go above and beyond are seeing the benefits as good training “sets one operator apart from another”.
And knowledgable staff can “improve the customer’s experience and ultimately improve sales”, according to Stephanie Wade of Tennent’s Training Academy.
Helen Willis at pubco Punch Taverns agreed, saying “quality and attentive service” is one of the key benefits of regular staff training.
She said investing time and money in training will “ensure you’re viewed as an employer who goes above and beyond for their staff”.
Mike Clist of the BII took a similar stance on the benefits of training – namely investing in the front of house team, who, when equipped with knowledge about the food and drink they are serving, “pass on their enthusiasm to the customer and create a buzzing atmosphere”.
And not all training needs to be formal, according to Jo Graham of the Whisky Ambassador, who said that “on the job training, team meetings, coaching and giving feedback can be just as effective in closing a skill or knowledge gap”.
Specialist training can also benefit licensees, according to Donna Pisani of CCE, who said that soft drinks are playing “an increasingly important role for licensees”.
In response to this, CCE has launched a free online training programme for bar staff, which focuses on demonstrating how pubs can increase their sales through the ‘perfect serve’.