Jobs round-up

Diageo tops female leadership representation review, BrewDog achieves B Corp certification

By Stuart Stone

- Last updated on GMT

People moves: the latest news on people moves, jobs and training from across the pub sector
People moves: the latest news on people moves, jobs and training from across the pub sector

Related tags Jobs Finance Diageo Environment

BrewDog and Diageo have earned recognition in the past week for their respective approaches to sustainability and representation, while Star Pubs & Bars, Toggle and Airship have provided updates on how they're helping staff prepare for post-lockdown trading.

Diageo named best FTSE 100 company for female leadership

Drinks giant Diageo has been named in the Hampton-Alexander Review as the top company in both the FTSE 100 and in the beverage sector for representation of women at board, executive and leadership level.

The Hampton-Alexander Review is an independent, business-led framework supported by the UK Government which has set recommendations for FTSE 350 companies to improve the representation of women on their boards and in leadership positions. 

Initially published in 2016, it set a minimum 33% target for women on FTSE 350 boards and in the two layers of leadership below the board by the end of 2020. 

According to the annual review, women make up 60% of Diageo’s board and 37.4% of staff members in leadership roles (executive team and direct reports), surpassing the target.

As well as being top in the FTSE 100 Overall Female Representation, FTSE 100 Board Representation and Beverage Industry categories, Diageo was also one of only two FTSE 100 companies ever to have majority female Board representation.

“We are driven by a core belief in the power of diversity,” Mairéad Nayager, Diageo’s chief HR officer, said. “We are very proud of our position in the review but remain ambitious and will continue to shape leading policies and practices, to improve representation at every level.”


Drinksology Kirker Greer hires new chief commercial officer

Premium spirits distributor, Drinksology Kirker Greer, has announced the appointment of John Soden as its new chief commercial officer.  

In his 25-year career, Soden has worked as a business unit director at Pernod Ricard, managing director at Castle Brands, vice president strategy and development at Edrington, and vice president sales and marketing at C&C International. 

"I am super excited to be joining the team at Drinksology Kirker Greer at such an important inflection point in the business,” Soden said of his new role. “There are enormous growth opportunities in key global markets for their premium spirit portfolio.  

“I also really look forward to working with such an enthusiastic and dynamic team,” he continued. “Drinksology Kirker Greer is such a unique drinks business, the Drinksology Creative arm of the business really sets them apart from everyone else.  

“Not only are they developing innovative spirits, but the packaging created is truly eye-catching and I look forward to helping introduce these exciting brands to a wider audience in the future.”

Steven Pattison, CEO of Drinksology Kirker Greer added: “John’s global experience is of great value to us.  

“He has successfully created routes to markets for some well-known brands and worked on the development of brands like Jameson and Tullamore Dew.  

“As we set our sights on continued growth and expansion, he will be an invaluable asset to us. We look forward to working with him on elevating our premium brands portfolio not only in Europe but globally.” 


Toggle and Airship team up to launch free hospitality masterclass series 

Hospitality CRM and gift card platforms Airship and Toggle have launched a free training platform to support the sector to “come back swinging” once lockdown restrictions are eased. 

Delivered in partnership with industry professionals and technology partners, the series is targeted at furloughed staff in particular, allowing operators to keep them engaged and offer upskilling opportunities. 

Webinars will take place every Thursday at 1pm with sessions confirmed so far covering subjects including how reservation tech is responding to changing consumer behaviour and ensuring your business is environmentally sustainable post-Covid. 

More sessions will also be announced in the coming week on the topics of social media, sales and more.

The free masterclass series is part of the #ComeBackStrong knowledge-transfer campaign, which aims to educate and inspire hospitality professionals whilst the sector is shuttered. 

“It is a real pleasure to be able to offer such a diverse range of training opportunities to the hospitality industry as part of our #ComeBackStrong campaign,” Dan Brookman, CEO at Airship and Toggle, said. 

“We know lots of hospitality staff have been on furlough for a long time now and are keen to help engage and motivate them through opportunities for learning.

“We’re looking forward to the public getting reacquainted with our incredible sector post-lockdown, and we’re keen to support in every way that we can." 

Star Pubs & Bars virtual forums to shape reopening plan 

Heineken’s on-trade arm, Star Pubs & Bars, has hosted the first of a series of February virtual forums – consisting of 12 operators on a Zoom meeting with Star operational and support staff – for its 130 Just Add Talent operators as it seeks feedback on proposed reopening plans.  

Previous Just Add Talent forums following the emergence from lockdown one in July highlighted the need for better use of social media and digital platforms to inform customers of what to expect when pubs reopen and the need for more comprehensive, earlier staff training.

What’s more, Star has pledged to introduce new training modules, including enhanced customer service including conflict resolution, upselling opportunities and hosting sport safely, while also streamlining systems and procedures including simplifying risk assessments and reviewing supplier performance. 

To help remind customers of social distancing regulations, Covid-19 safety point of sale will also be refreshed and reissued to all Just Add Talent pubs. 

“The forums are invaluable,” retail concepts manager, Beki Davies, said. “They allow us to listen to operators’ concerns and share national and local insight with them, and in this case discuss our reopening support plans.  

“Starting the process early means there is time to factor in changes resulting from feedback.

“We know our pubs have the potential to have a great summer, and we want to support them to make the most of every opportunity.” 

Vicki Gaffey of the Duck Inn in Redditch, Worcestershire, added: “When it came to the first lockdown the reopening support was excellent.  

“I had Zoom calls with my business development manager and the Safe to Trade audit we went through was really good.  It gave me confidence that we were organised.  

“We were also given Covid safety signage, and the reduced menu made running the kitchen much more manageable as we had to factor in zoning in the kitchen,” she added.  

“Ever since I took on the Duck Inn there have been Zoom meetings where operators have been able to provide feedback about suppliers and suggest improvements, which I really welcome. I am looking forward to providing input for the coming reopening plans.”


More than a third of hospitality firms plan recruitment drive

Some 36% of hospitality employers intend to recruit new staff in the next three months, according to new research.

While around a third of pub, bar, restaurant and hotel businesses planned hires according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and recruitment firm Adecco, healthcare, finance and insurance, education and ICT were the sectors with the strongest recruitment intentions. 

Overall, more than half (56%) of the 2,000 firms surveyed planned to take on new staff in the first three months of 2021.

The survey also found that the number of businesses planning to make redundancies in the first quarter of the year fell from 30% to 20%, versus the previous three-month period.

"Our findings suggest that unemployment may be close to peak and may even undershoot official forecasts, especially given the reported fall in the supply of overseas workers," CIPD’s Gerwyn Davies said.

The findings come after figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) found that hospitality was the hardest hit by redundancies in 2020​​.

Read more here

BrewDog announces B Corp certification 

Scottish craft brewer and bar operator BrewDog has achieved certified B Corp status, which it claims makes it the biggest beer business in the world to be awarded the accolade to date and the only hospitality business in the UK to achieve said status.

Certified B Corp companies meet the “highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose”, according to The Morning Advertiser’s​ sister title MCA Insight​. 

Only a small handful of similar business in the UK hold B Corp status, including craft beer companies Stroud Brewery, Toast Ale, Brewgooder and Small Beer Brew Co as well as foodservice supplier Vegetarian Express, Azzurri Group backer TowerBrook, food waste platform Winnow, meal kit producer Mindful Chef and Innocent Drinks.

BrewDog’s B Corp status is part of its wider commitments to ensure that it is a “planet first business” as follows an announcement in August 2020 that the carbon negative beermaker takes twice as much carbon out of the air as it emits.​  

“After decades of inaction we have a climate crisis on the horizon, and our certification as a B Corp business is another huge part of BrewDog’s commitment to considering the impact of our business decisions on the global community,” BrewDog co-founder James Watt commented. 

“B Corp is the future of business and we are proud to join an aspirational group of businesses like Patagonia and Allbirds in achieving B Corp status. 

“Through the certification we have committed to joining the community of business leaders, who want to use their businesses as a ‘force for good’. 

“The business landscape is changing so much and the impact of C-19 is only going to accelerate that change. The future of business is B Corp”.


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