Archive for Staff

Meet our staff – Gavin Taylor

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This staff member profile will hopefully give our customers more of an insight into our business and help improve the relationship we have with you. Let us know what you think!

Gavin Taylor, Stock Control
Parachutist, aspiring produce buyer and mountain biker.

Gavin is the first point of contact when deliveries arrive to our dry store. When he’s not unloading pallets of premium soft drinks, craft beers and other cooking ingredients, he’s organising where our product range is stored and rotated so it can be quickly retrieved when orders are placed. Gavin works closely with our buyers to make sure goods are replenished at the right time and in the right quantities.

Q. How did you first learn about Williamson Foodservice?
A. My friend Louise, who is a Field Sales Rep here at Williamson’s told me about it and that was just over 3 years ago now!

Q. What do you like most about your job?
A. It’s great that I get left to get on with my job without much interference but I also work closely with others who deal with stock to ensure it is organised effectively across different shifts.

Q. What are three words that best describe Williamson Foodservice?
A.Busy | Challenging  |  Efficient

Q. What’s the most challenging part of your job?
A. Peak times of the year means stock is coming in quickly and going back out to customers quickly. This means having to be well organised as I can have several delivery lorries coming in at once. Stock then needs to be safely stored, especially perishable items like refrigerated or frozen goods.

Q. What does a typical day look like for you?
A. I start at 3am when I organise the warehouses and move stock about to make it easily accessible. Deliveries start from 4am onwards and it’s a case of unloading goods quickly and storing them. I can take delivery of an entire articulated truck load of soft drinks one minute or a couple of dozen pots of artisan yoghurt from a van the next.

Q. What products can customers expect to be hearing more about?
A. Even in the three years I’ve been here, artisan products from premium soft drinks to cheeses have increased dramatically. Uplift in craft beer has also shown significant growth.

Q. What are your hopes or ambitions for the food and drink industry?
A. I hope it continues to thrive and despite others in the UK foodservice sector closing down recently, that Williamson’s continues to grow, develop opportunities and service our customers well.

Q. What might someone be surprised to know about you?
A. I completed 24 parachute jumps during my six years in the British Army!

Q. If you are eating out, which style of food do you prefer?
A. I like a lot of different foods but if it’s on offer, steak and chips always puts a smile on my face!

Q. What’s your passions in life or what do you like to do in your spare time?
A. Like several folk here at Williamson’s I love mountain biking. I cycle to work every day come rain or shine!

Q. If you could swap jobs with anyone else, whose would you want?
A. I’d love a spell doing Mark Williamson’s (Director) job. Buying all our fruit and vegetable produce from local farms and other parts of the UK to Continental Europe must be fascinating.

Q. Do you have a favourite holiday destination and what’s so special about it?
A. Florida. There’s lots to see and do and they do the whole family thing so well there.

Q. Is there a celebrity you most look like?
A. No, but Mark Wahlberg looks like me!

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Meet our staff – Nigel McEwan

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This staff member profile will hopefully give our customers more of an insight into our business and help improve the relationship we have with you. Let us know what you think!

Nigel McEwan, Warehouse Supervisor
Darts supremo, tapas eater and long distance pancake tossing champion.

Nigel is in charge of production on the floor of our main warehouse where orders all come together before they are dispatched to customers in our fleet of 30 vans and lorries. He makes sure customer orders are palletised and then loaded up with the right invoices so that customers receive their goods on time and in the right place.

Q. How did you first learn about Williamson Foodservice?
A. I started at Williamson’s about five years ago having seen their vans around Inverness when I was working for a rival company.

Q. What do you like most about your job?
A. I like the fact my job is challenging and demanding but I try to meet these pressures with determination each day.

Q. What’s the most challenging part of your job?
A. As we approach a very busy summer, getting customer orders organised, made up and loaded in time for vehicles leaving for destinations around the Highlands and Islands is a big challenge. We deliver as far as the Isle of Skye, Lochaber and the Western Isles as well as the north west Highlands, Inverness and Moray too!

Q. What does a typical day look like for you?
A.When I get into work at 10am, I will pick some special fruit and vegetable orders when stock arrives on the daily articulated lorry from Glasgow. These are orders customers request to satisfy specific menus, specialisms or seasonal offerings. We can just about source any produce a chef needs these days with a little notice but we carry a warehouse full of produce that is always available!

Q. What products can customers expect to be hearing more about?
A. Hopefully a warm summer will see local soft fruits flourish including strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants and brambles.

Q. What might someone be surprised to know about you?
A. I once tossed a pancake, the length of Church Street in Inverness!

Q. What’s your earliest food memory?
A. I hated onions as a kid and would ping them off my knife, much to my parents displeasure!

Q. If you are eating out, which style of food do you prefer?
A. I do enjoy a good steak or tapas where there’s plenty of choice/variety.

Q. What’s your passions in life or what do you like to do in your spare time?
A. I play darts in the local Inverness league and have recently won two titles! I also once beat professional darts champion Michael van Gerwen, the current world number 1 player!

Q. If you could swap jobs with anyone else, whose would you want?
A. I’d love to have Irving’s job as he is finishing his deliveries and going home each morning at 10am just as I am about to start my shift.

Q. If you had one meal to choose what would it be?
A. Steak with scallops!

Q. Are there any words or phrases that you either overuse or people know you for?
A. I’m always using cockney rhyming slang for a laugh.

Q. Which food do you wish had no calories?
A. I’ve got a bit of a sweet tooth, so any dessert!

Q. When are you happiest?
A. I enjoy trips to the racecourse to watch horse racing. A beer or two and winning a few quid always rounds the day off nicely.

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Meet our staff – Lyndsay Fraser

Focus on Williamson staff

This staff member profile will hopefully give our customers more of an insight into our business and help improve the relationship we have with you. Let us know what you think!

Lyndsay Fraser, Sales Advisor
Cheese aficionado, champion disco dancer and aspiring bomb disposal expert.

Lyndsay works in our sales team with several others. She is the first point of contact for many of our customers taking orders, providing product information, answering queries and advising on product availability. It’s safe to say she likes cheese!

Q. How did you get into the food and drink industry?
A. I’ve worked in bars on and off for several years.

Q. How did you first learn about Williamson Foodservice?
A. I regularly saw Willaimson’s vans delivering orders. We now have more branded vehicles than ever.

Q. What are three words that best describe Williamson Food Service?
A. Reliable | Teamwork | Thriving.

Q. What do you like most about your job?
A. My customers and the friends I’ve made since I started working at Williamson’s really make my job :))

Q. What’s the most challenging part of your job?
A. Not indulging in the huge variety of cheese we have in stock!

Q. What does a typical day look like for you?
A. Taking orders is a big part of my job. We have schedules to suit customer needs which means I call for their orders at a time that is most convenient to them. Other calls often come through in between the schedule which manages to keep me busy most days!

Q. What’s the most interesting thing you have learned in the past 12 months?
A. Finding out what a finger lime is! It has a caviar ‘jewel like’ pearl inner that really explodes in the mouth with citrus, sweet and sour.

Q. What might someone be surprised to know about you?
A. I used to run for Scotland, was a champion disco dancer and loved to play basketball.

Q. Name something that would surprise people about your role?
A. Just how busy we get in the summertime. It gets busier every year!

Q. What food can’t you resist?
A. Cheese and wine – a match made in heaven!

Q. If you are eating out, which style of food do you prefer?
A. I love food but Scottish is best!

Q. What’s your passions in life or what do you like to do in your spare time?
A. I love going to gigs, seeing local bands, and visiting Edinburgh to stay with my brother.

Q. If you could swap jobs with anyone else, whose would you want?
A. Being one of our sales reps would be great as I’d get to meet customers face-to-face more, but I do love my current job 🙂

Q. If you had one meal to choose what would it be?
A. Sunday roast every time!

Q. Tell us a fact that most people don’t know.
A. A flock of crows is called a ‘murder’!

Q. What did you want to be when you grew up?
A. I wanted to go into the army as a bomb disposal expert!

Q. Do you have any hidden talents?
A. I absorb the most obscure pieces of information. No use most of the time unless I’m at a pub quiz!

Q. Which food do you wish had no calories?
A. Err, cheese – bit of a pattern emerging here!

Q. When are you happiest?
A. Family dinners, a few laughs and a drink or two!

Q. What would you like to be famous for?
A. Inventing a line of calorie free food/wine that tasted just as good as the real thing.

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Meet our staff – Simon Stewart

Focus on Williamson staff

This staff member profile will hopefully give our customers more of an insight into our business and help improve the relationship we have with you. Let us know what you think!

Simon Stewart, Marketing Manager

Mountain biker, goats cheese fanatic and ‘belt and braces’ man.

Simon handles a wide range of marketing activity from the production of our regular promotional brochure and other printed or display material to social media, public relations, writing blogs, sponsorships, advertising and organising events like trade shows. He works closely with suppliers on joint promotional activity and ensures branding and visual content is accurate.

Q. How did you get the job with Williamson’s?
A
I was self-employed offering public relations and copywriting services but fancied a change just over a year ago. My marketing experience and a general interest in food and drink as well as a pretty close affinity with the Highlands sealed it for me

Q. What are three words that best describe Williamson Foodservice?
A. 
Committed | Loyal  |  Friendly

Q. What do you like most about your job?
A. 
I enjoy creating messages that let customers know how wide our product range is. When I started, I was amazed at the sheer volume and variety.

Q. What’s the most challenging part of your job?
A. 
Probably keeping on top of a continually changing digital and social media landscape.

Q. What does a typical day look like for you?
A. 
First thing I look at Twitter and respond or share anything that is relevant like our daily produce stock sheet and market information. For the rest of the day I can be working up a new promo brochure, organising a trade show, scheduling social media posts or writing a blog for our website.

Q. What gives you the most satisfaction in your role?
A. 
Learning about new and existing products and effectively communicating this to our customers to help them achieve their food and drink goals.

Q. What products can customers expect to be hearing more about?
A. 
Local and Scottish products are what consumers are most interested in and what we as a company are always looking out for. Watch this space!

Q. What are your hopes or ambitions for the food and drink industry?
A. 
I hope essential investment in infrastructure like roads and basic visitor amenities in many areas is progressed as soon as possible so that the North of Scotland’s tourism/food and drink industry can continue to grow sustainably whilst realising its full potential.

Q. Name something that would surprise people about your role?
A. 
I’m often found snooping about the produce warehouse looking for interesting fruit and veg pics to tweet about!

Q. What’s your earliest food memory?
A. 
Churning milk into butter in primary school!

Q. What’s your passions in life or what do you like to do in your spare time?
A. 
Mountain biking, off road triathlons, trail running, reading sports autobiographies and whisky.

Q. If you could swap jobs with anyone else, whose would you want?
A. 
Mountain biking or snowsports journalism would be pretty nice!

Q. Do you have a favourite holiday destination and what’s so special about it?
A. 
Banff in Canada is my all-time number 1 for great outdoor sports, great food and great people.

Q. If you had one meal to choose what would it be?
A. 
Anything with goats cheese!

Q. Are there any words or phrases that you either overuse or people know you for?
A. 
I’m a bit of a ‘belt and braces’ man!

Q. What’s top of your bucket list?
A. 
Get back to Banff, Canada asap!

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Meet our staff – Louise Beattie

Focus on Williamson staff

This staff member profile will hopefully give our customers more of an insight into our business and help improve the relationship we have with you. Let us know what you think!

Louise Beattie, Field Sales Representative

Chatterbox, wannabe food inspector and world traveller.

Louise is one of two field sales reps at Williamson’s. For many of our customers, she is the face they see the most and is out on Highland roads all year round covering everywhere from Inverness City to the Isle of Skye. She helps customers including chefs, owners and other staff to understand how our product range can help meet their needs in a cost effective and profitable way.

Q. How did you get the job with Williamson’s?
A. I was made redundant by a competitor and got a job in telesales at Williamson’s. This post was a great way to get to know the product range and my 17 years of food industry knowledge also helped when Williamson’s was expanding – especially their ‘dry’ goods range.

Q. What are three words that best describe Williamson Foodservice?
A. Loyal | Local | Potential

Q. What do you like most about your job?
A. I work with a great bunch of people, customers are so friendly and the scenery isn’t bad either!

Q. What’s the most challenging part of your job?
A. I’ve always been rubbish at getting up in the morning!

Q. What does a typical day look like for you?
A. Visiting customers and helping them find products that meet their needs as well as doing dry goods comparisons for them are the big ones but meeting suppliers regularly to improve product knowledge is another.

Q. What gives you the most satisfaction in your role?
A. Promoting or discussing new product lines with chefs and business owners helps generate new menu ideas that hopefully excite customers.

Q. What products can customers expect to be hearing more about?
A. During 2017, new coffee ranges aimed at different parts of the market have been launched as well as great tasting wines and local products including Aberdeenshire yogurt, Spey Valley craft beers and different artisan cheeses.

Q. What are your hopes or ambitions for the food and drink industry?
A. I hope the growing hospitality sector manages to attract new and talented staff to help meet demand. We are currently sponsoring a local Schools Masterchef competition to help promote hospitality with young people.

Q. Name something that would surprise people about your role?
A. I’m not big on fruit and there are certain cheeses I’m fussy about too! Apart from that, I eat practically anything!

Q. What’s your earliest food memory?
A. ‘Happy Faces’ biscuits and salad cream sandwiches!

Q. What’s your passions in life or what do you like to do in your spare time?
A. Badminton, eating out, gigs (especially 80s and 90s), travelling and a wee flutter on the football or horses.

Q. If you could swap jobs with anyone else, whose would you want?
A. I’d love to be a food guide inspector.

Q. Do you have a favourite holiday destination and what’s so special about it?
A. Croatia is absolutely stunning from its fabulous beaches and food to amazing islands, and terrific nightlife.

Q. If you had one meal to choose what would it be?
A. One of our customers makes incredible lamb croquettes with pea puree. Delicious!

Q. Are there any words or phrases that you either overuse or people know you for?
A. My colleagues say I use too many words in general! I’m always yapping!

Q. What’s top of your bucket list?
A. I’d love to take time out to travel by train through Europe.

 

 

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