What’s it like working at the Support Centre for Revolution Bars Group? We ask our very own experts for a snapshot of their career stories so far.
Let’s start easy. What’s your name and how long have you worked for Revolution Bars Group?
My name’s Ollie Tootill (OT) and I’ve been at RBG for 3 years now, but I did have another 3 year stint whilst I was at University working at Revolution Sheffield as a bartender.
I’m Matthew Gough (MG) and I’ve worked at RBG for around 8 years in total, but this has been across two stints as I had a couple of years away working elsewhere.
My name is Lauren Cassells (LC) and I am up to about 12 or 13 years but I forget exactly how long it is now if I’m honest.
Give us a brief history of your RBG journey.
LC – I hope you’ve got lots of space? I started when I was 18 as a bar tender and I did this for 4 years whilst studying at university. I then became a Sales Manager at Rev Sheffield managing pre-booked revenue for the site. I made the move into marketing at 22 where I was a Music and Marketing assistant. I managed the bars playlists and supported the team on projects such as updating the website or proof reading menus.
From there I worked my way up, with Revolution supporting my education putting me through various qualifications including my CIM diploma in Marketing. I’m now Head of Marketing for RBG, which basically means I look after a team of people dedicated to acquiring and retaining customers for both Revolution and Revolucion de Cuba.
MG – My time with the business started way back in 2009 on the bar in Sheffield. I was trying to fit it in alongside studying and playing hockey. I was quickly hooked to the industry and decided to venture into management through the companies careers path. I moved over to Manchester in a Deputy manager role before leaving to move into recruitment and HR. I spent a couple of year’s away from RBG adding a different string to my bow before coming back to the company as the Recruitment Manager setting up an internal recruitment team.
I spent a couple of years as the Recruitment Manager whilst I was put through my CIPD HRM Level 5, supported entirely by the business. When an opportunity arose to move into my current role as a HR Business Partner I jumped at it and have never looked back.
OT – You’ll see a bit of a link here…. I started working at Revolution Sheffield when I was at Uni there. I loved working there and made some incredible friends for life (including Lauren and Matt). I graduated and started working in finance, training to be an accountant. A couple of years later, I heard from some friends that there was a job open in Finance at RBG so I jumped at the opportunity! It’s now been 3 years and it’s one of the best decisions I’ve made. I finished my studies and went from Management Accountant to FP&A Analyst and I’m now one of the Commercial Finance Managers.
Matthew Gough – HRBP
Can you tell us your proudest moment within the company?
MG – It’s so hard to pull out one moment from what has been such a fun and memorable time. From a professional point of view it has to be the creation of an internal recruitment team. The business had previously relied solely upon recruitment agencies to find it’s incredible external talent. Fast forward 2 years and we had a brand new, 3 person team finding the most talented external managers in the industry, all whilst cutting the cost for the business by around 75%.
OT – I think the thing I’m most proud of is how quickly I’ve been able to progress within the business. I came in with the intention of putting my own stamp on things as well as developing my skills. I’ve been able to do that at every stage of my RBG career and I’m proud that my development has been recognised and rewarded.
LC – I’m really proud of loads of things so it’s difficult to pick just one, seeing your first ever campaign printed and live in the venues is always exciting and will be a moment I’ll always remember.
But I have to say I’m really proud to work for a company that treats its people so well. The current crisis with COVID-19 has only emphasised this. The exec team have lead with the utmost integrity, ensuring that all of our team members have felt supported at every twist and turn, making decisions that don’t just support the future of the business but also the stability for it’s people. The leadership team have also made an unbelievable effort when it comes to keeping everyone informed and ensuring we are all keeping in touch and looking out for everyone’s well-being. Super proud!
Lauren Cassells – Head of Marketing
What do you enjoy most about working here?
LC – Everyone says this but I genuinely work with some of my best friends, and I really do have a Revolution family. I lived with Tina, our Head of Food for a few years when I was just out of university, Ollie was the best man at my wedding and my Husband works in the people team. I get to spend my days with some of the best people. Cheesy!
OT – The best thing about working at RBG has to be the people, and how passionate everyone is about the company. There really seems to be such a diverse group of people throughout, but everyone really cares about the company and wants to help it succeed. I’ve got a lot of close friends within the business, which makes me look forward to coming into work every day.
MG – I’d say the people for sure. But not wanting us to sound like a scratched record I’ll say the way in which the business genuinely cares for its employees. There is a definite focus on well-being, support and quality of life. The industry is a tough one to be in as it demands a lot, but when you feel supported and part of something greater it makes it a joy not a chore.
Oliver Tootill – Commercial Finance Manager
Why did you join RBG in the first place?
OT – I joined initially because I knew Revolution was the best party in town and I knew it would be so much fun to work there whilst at University. I joined again because I wanted to work for a company that I knew and loved, in an industry I was passionate about. My friends within the company couldn’t speak highly enough of how great it was to work here so it was a no-brainer for me!
LC – I knew I wanted to work in a bar but I’m not going to lie – it was across the road from my apartment and at the interview they asked me what music I was into and where I went on nights out in Manchester. It seemed pretty cool, so I took the job over a another one 3 doors up the road.
MG – Initially it was because I was told by so many people that “everyone needs a bar job at some point in their life”. Revolution in Sheffield was somewhere I loved to visit as a customer and I thought if working there was going to be half as fun as a night out there then I’d be in the right place. I came back because of my experience first time round, there’s almost a magnetic nature to the business that pulled me back.
What’s the hardest thing about your role?
LC – It’s pretty full on, there isn’t really a 9-5pm attitude, understandable given our venues are open morning to night. It can be difficult to switch off at the end of the day when our guests are just gearing up for the start of their experience. It’s all or nothing, but that’s what’s so great about it. Not many industries allow the flexibility in the way you work, which being a mum means I can be there for nursery pick-ups or Christmas concerts etc.
OT – I think one of the hardest things is making sure I’m prioritising the needs of the business. There’s always so much going on, it’s important I’m thinking about what will add most value and support the Operations teams in making the best decisions.
MG – Spending time during the week away from my family can be challenging at times. It can be tiring spending a couple of nights a week from home in hotels, but it’s not all bad as some of the beds are super comfy! I am in a fortunate position that I manage my own diary and my own priorities, which means that if I feel it’s getting too much I can pull it back in and take some time back.
Finally, can you describe your role in three words?
LC – Fun, creative, challenging
MG – Exciting, rewarding, stretching
OT -Interesting, challenging, rewarding.