The thing I love about The Cake Nest is the team. We all have our ups and downs but we also have each other. I know sickly isn't it! lol. Actually, it's been a really important part of building our company. It's part of our vision and values. The majority of us have to work but that shouldn't mean we hate it or the people.
What's this got to do with Natalie?
She's our head baker... but not for the next 6 months. She's taking a sabbatical and moving to France for 6 months to run a chalet. Fear not she's coming back (hopefully!). And if you go ski-ing you may come across her!
Why is this important news?
Well, because we are a small business. These things are big and require planning. I think it's fair to say that Natalie was nervous about telling us she was going and that it was a shock to all of us. However, my first reaction was GO! Originally, she offered her notice and promised to find her replacement but we gave her an alternative option. Take 6 months off and live your dreams. Why? Because if one of our daughters had this opportunity we would want them to go, how could I stop someone else's? Equally, we love Natalie and would love her to come back. She said "yes" and we were all a bit emotional.
What to do?
So the wheels were set in motion and we began to advertise for her position. We interviewed and realised how spoilt we were (no offence to anyone who came in!). But truly Natalie has worked for us for a few years and we realised we were asking a lot of someone new. They would have to learn a temporary job at peak season and we weren't sure how doable that was. Then one person applied... Victoria. Our own wonderful apprentice. She's been with us a year now and knows exactly what Natalie does.
A natural choice maybe but she's only 19 and is just completing her apprenticeship. With Natalie's help we came up with a plan. For the last few months Natalie has been training and handing over. The next part was managing the kitchen and people. This is difficult for anyone and for Victoria it was slightly daunting as her team consists of Steve and our new apprentice, Katie. To put this into context that's a director and someone only a few days younger than her. Oh and it's coming up to Christmas and Katie needs training. She's a star for applying especially knowing what she was up against! We know she's up to it though, Victoria is fab.
Onwards and Upwards
Personally, I can only see this as a positive move. Promoting from within, looking after our apprentices and allowing Natalie to take the opportunity of a life time. So it's not Adieu Natalie, simply Au revoir. We enjoyed our early Christmas do starting at Marden Cocktail Lounge, going on to Moveable Feast on Saturday and then had a staff lunch on her last day.
Hugs as she departed but À bientôt. Thank you for all your hard work, have a fabulous Christmas and remember to post lots of photos. Love you loads and hope you have an amazing time x