Jean-Marc Poumel, General Manager at Radisson Blu: Giving young people a flavour of the future

Jean-Marc has just started mentoring at Ysgol Bro Ederyn. Proactive in the ‘People Industry’, Jean-Marc is keen to give young people in his community the same level of support he had growing up. 

Tell me a bit about yourself:

My name is Jean-Marc Poumel and I am the General Manager of the Radisson Blu Hotel based in the centre of Cardiff. We are part of larger pool of hotels and report to a Management Company, the Owners and the Radisson Blu brand. We consider ourselves to be in a ‘People Industry’, looking after people, clients and guests. Part of our ethos is to ensure we engage with the local community as a responsible business, and we work with many charities regionally, nationally and internationally.

Why did you want you want/your company want to get involved with 1MM?

As General Manager, it was my choice to be part of the 1MM programme but it’s a choice that is also supported by the company. The hospitality industry is struggling in terms of recruitment so the more we can do to promote the industry the better, whether that is bringing people in to the business, greater exposure, ensuring we are reachable and also going into the community to promote our industry. This programme is a great way of possibly identifying talent and recruiting young people. We are also working with the Cardiff Commitment so this was a natural fit.

I have also had many mentors, who have often brought something to my life so I want to see if we can do the same for young people today.

What challenges do you see facing young people/our future workforce?

I think young generations today have so much done for them, and when they have to make decisions they sometimes find this challenging. I also think that sometimes young people have a vision of what they see as their future, but this often isn’t a true reflection of reality. I hope the mentoring programme will help young people understand that they will soon have to work hard at making their own decisions.

I want to be able to give young people a flavour of what’s out there and understand how the next few years will impact on their future.

Have you enjoyed your mentoring experience?

Yes, I have definitely enjoyed my experience so far. It has helped me reflect on the way I do things in work and apply different ways of working. I am trying to get colleagues to make more decisions themselves.

Have you noticed the impact that mentoring has had on your mentee?

I have received some positive feedback from the teacher of the school which is really encouraging. The student I am working with is very keen, so I think this makes a big difference, I have also offered him the opportunity to come and shadow our Financial Controller at the hotel which I think would help him to perceive the work ethics of the finance industry. The more we meet the more open and honest he is, I think he understands that I am not there to judge him and that I am just giving him my time.

I would recommend the scheme to any business, you have nothing to lose and the commitment is more than manageable.