00:00:03 My name’s Geoff L, and I work as Concierge at the Coppid Beech Hotel in Bracknell. A Concierge looks after anybody and everybody that’s in the hotel, whether they’re guests stopping in the hotel, whether they’re day visitors, whether they’re contractors. Anybody who needs assistance, generally should come through a Concierge. Anything that a guest needs to make their stay at the hotel more comfortable.
00:00:30 I didn’t really know what I wanted to do when I was at school. Most of the things that I did at school, that I was happy about doing, were hands on things. Whether it was hands on Science, hands on Arts and Crafts, woodwork, that sort of thing. And my father wanted me to become an apprentice, and be a skilled man, with a City & Guilds Certificate. When I left school I started an apprenticeship, and I did that for five or six years, and finished with a City & Guilds certificate – a Diploma of Merit – in the printing industry.
00:01:10 And I really really really loved that job. Not many years afterwards I got married, and at the time money was a big issue in our lives, and I stopped doing the printing trade, and started to chase jobs with careers and prospects, and some more money. I saw an advert for a Trainee Assistant Manager with a supermarket group. I stayed in the retail sector with that particular company for about five years, then I moved to an even larger group in the retail sector. And I sort of slightly changed careers, in so far as I then moved into managing public houses. My wife and I both joined in as a management couple. Managing the pub is a very challenging job, because you’re literally responsible for the – everything for 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
00:01:58 And we had a great time running pubs. So much so that we actually stopped managing the pub and bought a lease from the company, and ran our own business within it. Unfortunately it was at a time that the Government had instructed all the pub companies to start disposing of some of their pubs, and we saw it as an opportunity to sell the pub and make some sort of a profit. As well as selling the pub we got divorced, so the money that we’d made out of it, and in our working likes, went half each. And we went our separate ways. I quite literally just had a few months off, and just chilled out and relaxed. And had a few holidays, and sat back and thought what I wanted to do.
00:02:43 And as my previous life had been involved in working with the public, I decided to look for something where I was working with the public again. So of all things I went into Department Stores.
00:03:00 I probably worked in that retail sector, for me, whether it’s running pubs or whether it’s working in Department Stores, for more than 30 years. And I’m very happy dealing with them, very happy to meet customers and talk to them, and get them to enjoy their day and their shopping experience, or whatever they happen to be doing for the day. As long as I enjoy the job, and as long as people enjoy me helping them out, I’m happy doing what I’m doing.
00:03:30 I’m a little bit sad that when I was younger, I chased money, my father told me to chase career opportunities. I probably should have listen to him a little bit more. But I chased money once, I’ve never done it since.
00:03:45 If I could do absolutely anything in the world, I’d probably do exactly what I’m doing ’cause I love talking to customers, I love people. Everyone’s different, and everybody’s individual. And there’s some fascinating and really nice people out there, just waiting to be met.