As I write my annual blog to sum up the year, it struck me that 2022 was still a bit weird, with the after effects of the pandemic and nothing being quite normal – but sort of getting back to being normal!

And within the #bmFamily💜💚 I’m happy to say that this year  – despite every effort to prevent it – things seem to be getting back to normal. Our turnover is back up, team members are returning and once again the estate is growing – and most importantly we still feel like a family with fundamentally food at our heart; along with our other FOODIES values, of course.

Unscathed and Unchanged

Who would have thought we have got through all that relatively unscathed and unchanged.

We started the year on a bit of a go slow; as without the critical mass and normal pandemonium it just seemed odd and in slow motion. We of course didn’t recognise this until we started fast forwarding in life, as customers returned.

During the year the numbers – and the way we work has had to change. Monday is ‘the quiet day’ and is all about prep in readiness for the manic days  – TWT-  as it’s known.

The midweek days are ones of stress and the unknown, especially working out the numbers to cater for and with hospitality maxed out, as everyone comes in on the same days.

Friday is a much needed recovery day for all that was left undone midweek – this is the day that has died, in catering terms, but thankfully for us, it gives us time for much needed recuperation.

The problem is without some policy change this pattern will solidify. People really don’t want to come in to empty buildings, when their work colleagues aren’t there, and without that sense of buzz and belonging.

2022 has become the year of TWT

Bizarrely on TWT days the restaurants overflow and meeting rooms are over booked, causing all to be frazzled as everyone crams five days into three! The best solution I’ve heard is where client companies management teams are asked to hold meetings on Mondays to get people to spread the days out a bit better, (god forbid to ask people to come in on a Friday!)

Thankfully also the biggest change this year is all the ‘Green’ aspects of life are returning – disposables are once again disappearing and this has become a priority.

In the main though this year I do believe people, especially the younger generation, are missing out big time in not gathering together, networking is critical as is a sense of belonging and building a culture.

Fortunately in the #bmFamily💜💚 we know how to build a remote culture – and know it’s not easy and needs a great deal of work. We have always had to work remotely from each other as we are very spread out geographically. We work hard to make sure everyone feels connected and that seems to have strengthened in the last year. People work better together when communicated with and supported by each other and I continue to be very proud of our culture and how its strength has been retained.

Joint MDs

This year we had one big change, and that was in our leadership team, with our regional MDs becoming our Joint MDs. It was one of the best examples of nurturing your team and giving them opportunities – we were all very delighted.  The new MDs, Angus and Antony, are very much focusing on building on the values of the #bmFamily💜💚. So it’s a continuity of onwards and upwards and we are all looking forward to 2023.


Share on:

Facebook Twitter

My earliest food memories are of my mum’s baking; coconut pyramid cakes were my favourite.

More from Wendy Bartlett