Modou is Senegalese, but spent many years of his life in Spain. Modou came over by himself to Glasgow with only £150 in his pocket to look for an opportunity in life at the age of 18. He slept rough for 10 days until he found shelter in a church that helps the homeless and eventually he found a permanent shelter to stay at.
He spent a year continuously applying for jobs with no success as he had very poor English. He then stumbled across my ad when he was applying for jobs online and applied within 3 minutes of the ad being live for a kitchen porter.
I hired him in June 2014 on a part time basis and within 2 months I noticed he had an unbelievable work ethic, a healthy respect and a positive attitude towards work; exactly the qualities that I look for in any employee. I started to then teach him the fundamentals of kitchen hygiene, to understand basic food ingredients, to hold a knife, develop more complex knife skills and eventually the basics of cooking.
Modou was given a unique opportunity and grasped it with both hands, gaining more and more knowledge on a daily basis, absorbing it all like a sponge. I took Modou into my personal circle, introduced him to my friends, family, and he even spent Christmas with me.
“I’d love to have 5 Modous working for me”
This was my thinking after a while and then the penny dropped – if these are the type of employees I want to have working for me, I need to do something about it. My training Academy will be a platform to recruit like-minded individuals such as Modou and give them every opportunity to be successful, like him.
Modou’s hard work and dedication has been rewarded – he is now Head Chef of 111 and will be working with Nico to help train other aspiring chefs.