Epic Studios Hospitality Manager Profile
Welcome to our crew feature for August! This time we’re talking to highly regarded member of the team, Epic Studios hospitality manager, Molly Hamilton.
Molly manages all catering, bar and related staff and it’s her job to ensure that everything runs smoothly and safely in our hospitality sector. This is no easy feat. It relies on meticulous planning and a lot of quick-thinking in an often hectic, noisy environment. During a busy week Molly and her team may work on up to 6 diverse events, from roller derbys, darts, boxing and even televised wrestling, to conferences, dinner dances, theatre and, of course, live music – with crowds of up to 1000 people at a time that need to be kept comfortable and happy. What’s that really like behind the scenes..?
Hi Molly, I thought it was time to introduce you to our readers after four years with the company! You’ve helped to deliver a huge range of successful events at Epic Studios since joining us in 2014. If you had to name a most enjoyable event and a most challenging one, what would they be and why?
I enjoy a lot of events here at Epic Studios but the one I find most enjoyable to work at here is Bad Manners. Douglas Trendle (Buster Bloodvessel) brings a lot of energy every time he performs and creates a great atmosphere for the customers.
The most challenging events we host at Epic would have to be our charity boxing events. They have increased in length and attract lots of customers who are supporting their friend or family member in boxing to raise money for charity. This makes things pretty demanding for us in the hospitality team – with a full and very busy venue and both a standing audience and customers at tables to serve.
Anyone who has worked in hospitality will know how challenging the role can be – it means being on your feet for hours at a time and you are front line when it comes to dealing with customers. You seem to have a sixth sense when creating rotas and getting the right stock in for our events but how do you go about crisis-managing issues like unexpected staff absence or higher numbers of customers than expected?
Unfortunately, like most businesses, there is not much we can do if we have staff members fall ill, or let us know last minute that they can’t make it in on the day of an event. Because of the nature of the business and many bar staff working events part time it can be hard, sometimes impossible, to find a replacement at very short notice. However, our recently updated, additional section of bar will make it easier in future, as we now have more draught taps and bottle fridges for staff to use with faster pouring and easier access.
How do you manage appropriate ID checks with so many borderline-looking customers to deal with at a busy bar?
We operate the ‘Think 25’ policy at all our events. This can add time to serving customers, making it a longer wait for others, but is unavoidable. So, if you are lucky enough to look under 25 have your ID ready guys – as you will be asked to prove you are aged 18 or older!
What’s your secret to staying ‘zen’ when managing our events?
Years of practice at working under pressure! If any challenges come up during busy events it is a lot easier to deal with them if you can keep calm and take each challenge step by step.
What is the best live band that you have seen at Epic during your time with us?
There have been so many great live bands perform at Epic! If I had to pick one it would be Lower than Atlantis back in 2015.
What do you get up to when you’re not at work?
Read, I like to read a lot, I also listen to a lot of music and go to many music events myself.
Aside from Epic, what’s your favourite music venue at the moment?
I go to lots of venues in London as the kind of music I love is house, DnB and bassline. My favourite venues right now include Lightbox and XOYO.
What do you look for in a great bartender?
Someone who is bubbly and enthusiastic when talking to both customers and staff. Our bar staff also need to be able to use their initiative and be versatile as every event is different. You could be working the bar at a gig one day and then serving tables at a sporting event the next.
If you’re interested in Epic Studios events, please visit our Epic Studios Events page for updates.