Mark Tobin is General Manager of the Best Western Plus Swan Hotel in Wells, the longest serving member of Best Western with 45 years under its belt. We spoke to him about life at the top, and his career in hospitality so far.
What does your job entail?
I oversee both the operational and business management of a city centre 4 star hotel. That means I get equal exposure to the coal face of the business and the planning and management side. I manage everything from cleaning and maintenance to events and catering, as well as the wider sales and revenue strategy and things like HR and Personnel.
How long have you worked in hospitality?
I’ve been working in hospitality for 31 Years (now I am giving my age away!!), and I’ve done just about everything in a hotel you can think of in that time. There are few if any careers that can furnish you with this much range or scope of training and development.
How did you start in the industry?
I started in hospitality about as entry level as you can get, at 13 years old, peeling potatoes for my local fish and chip shop. One of the best things about working in the hospitality industry is that there is genuine scope for advancement if you’re willing to learn, and so many different opportunities for you to put your skills to use.
What do you most enjoy about your job?
The social life. I’m lucky that I get to spend as much time dealing with the everyday running of the hotel as I do behind a desk, so I’m always working with my sensational team to solve problems. I also enjoy meeting the general public every day, and hearing about the great work my staff do first hand.
What do you most enjoy about working in hospitality?
Working in hospitality is more of a lifestyle than a job, no two days are ever the same. It keeps you on your toes all the time, and there’s often a lot of pressure, but I can confidently say there is nothing boring or monotonous about working in hospitality. It is a vibrant, fun and engaging life that keeps throwing new challenges at you, whatever stage of your career you’re at.