Mission: To give every member of The Alchemist a subconscious understanding of the foundation of their professional role, thus allowing all conscious thought to be focused on a personalised approach to customer awareness and interaction. Vision: To create a professional journey that gives individuals the opportunity to progress their career whilst working for a good boss, but all of this can and should be done whilst having fun!
ALCHEMISTS SEEK TO turn base metals into gold — and this bar and restaurant group brings out the shine in its staff. Its establishments are all about showmanship, with dry ice, foam and smoke, and like magicians’ apprentices, employees learn fast.
Based in Knutsford, Cheshire, the business was set up in 2010 as a subsidiary of Living Ventures, which ranked ninth in The Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For survey in 2013, and provides this operation’s core management. The Alchemist ranked 20th in The Sunday Times Fast Track in 2014, and Palatine Private Equity now owns a majority stake.
Employees at its nine venues prize the training they receive (83% positive). Almost half the 297-strong workforce joined in the past year, and the young staffers consider the experience they acquire here is valuable for the future (85%). They also learn a secret code of “numerical calls” for fast and discreet communication: 118 means “answer the telephone!” while 700 warns: “babe (male or female) just walked in”.
“We are expanding; people can see a clear progression path,” says managing director Simon Potts. “People who were bartenders are now general managers.”
Male : Female