Author Topic: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"  (Read 21514 times)  Share 

Offline beermaker

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #15 on: Jun 13 - 2009 »
Thanks for that .
I've no great axes to grind, but the way Hump appears to be destroying this company saddens me. To be honest though, I would be happy to see him squirm. He is a power crazed person. He cannot accept that the days of cap doffing and total power of the landed gentry are now gone.  His treatment of women, especially, has been very bad. Especially if they have become divorced . Divorced men, however, do not seem to be a problem to him.  Like a lot of the ruling classes, he claims to be a christian, but in reality, shows the christian traits of his class.......do as I say, not as I do.
The real question has to be asked. He is destroying this once wonderful company. So for what reason? As far as I can see, there are two alternatives;

1 He's doing it to spite the rest of the family....especially Oliver.

2 He has really lost it.

I cannot see any other answers. If anyone has any theories I'd love to see them.

Offline minsterman

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #16 on: Jul 9 - 2009 »
Maybe he's just bored!  :D
These are sad times :(

Offline yank ale drinker

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #17 on: Jul 11 - 2009 »
Are there any journalistic exposes (should be accent mark over the second 'e') on this clown?   How old is he?  When will he kick off?

Offline 357maddog

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #18 on: Jul 12 - 2009 »
Hello Yank Ale Drinker, and welcome to the SS forum website.

It must be pretty unbelievable for you to read some of the postings, they are all sadly a pretty accurate reflection of what is happening.
As an ex SS employee I can say without contradiction that I have experienced many of the things that people are reporting here.

Sam's do NOT have an official website, Mr. Smith does not have to answer to share holders, he is, in business terms virtually a "sole trader",  albeit an extremely wealthy one, he seems to shun ANY publicity be it good or bad.
They spend virtually nothing on marketing budgets for the UK, they probably DO spend quite a lot promoting their pruducts in the US...maybe you can confirm this because I do know that certain Sams products are well known in the states.

I can only describe Humphrey's approach to business as "Dickensian"...(at best), in fact he was recently quoted in an emploment tribunal to comment that many of his bar staff only work for "pin money"..you may not be familiar with this term but it could translate as "pocket money".

Doubtless, some bar staff will be the younger generation perhaps paying their way through university, but in the main you will find that lots of people rely very heavily on subsidising poor primary incomes with the minimum wage that SS pays.

You would fully expect a large company to value their long serving staff and cherish their experience in the middle of this world recession.....Do you know what Humphrey has done?
He has either sacked or edged out scores of long serving management couples, who knows why...only him, like much of the issues on here, only Humph knows the real reason, we are only left to speculate.

Some will say it is to save him paying out on lump sums on retirement, if so it wouldn't take a genius to work out that the money he is currently wasting taking on managers who cannot and will not ever be able to do the job..(and that is NOT all of the new managers,) will pale into insignificance in comparison... there is plenty of evidence on here to prove that he is getting it wrong.

It is very difficult to try and explain exactly what is going on, the managers are as mystified as us all, he had a good food trade across the UK,  he has almost completely ruined that and is not even big enough to admit he's f--ked up, instead he prefers to re-introduce another menu that on the face of it looks an improvement from the microwaved rubbish but is virtually the same thing again.

No one knows where this will end, Humph is around 60/65 years of age I think, so isn't about to pop off just yet, some say he has got mental health issues, could be true, and maybe the reason for this eccentric behaviour.
What I do know for a certain fact is that Sams products are fantastic, they have some very wonderful and quirky lold English pubs and also had an army of enthusiastic and loyal workers, it would seem he will only be content when he totally wrecked it all.
   
Beware the toes you tread on today are not attached to the leg that supports the arse that you are gonna have to kiss tomorrow.

Offline yank ale drinker

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #19 on: Jul 12 - 2009 »
Certainly most of the pubs I visited in London were staffed by young people who are not in it for the long haul.  Still, very respectful and almost always a superb pint.

I did also talk w/ a couple of SS landlords in length and they were very pleasant and this gave me a overall satisfying experience of the pub.  Though Mr. Smith is an obvious tightwad to an extreme degree, I appreciate the lack of video games, music, tv, etc....  Little did I know that this was to not pay fees, etc.

SS beer is probably available in all 50 states and for an import it is a quality beer and a good deal.  A large bottle (18 or so oz.) runs $3-4   and a 4-pack of 12 oz. bottles runs around $10.  But, as you say, there is never any advertising at all.

I always root for the independent, the local, but it seems that this guy is on a different planet.

Offline jboycott

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #20 on: Jul 12 - 2009 »
Well put Mr Maddog. Can I also welcome our American friend and also emphasize that most of us cherish (and some of us, might I say, love?) the beers, pubs and traditions which Sam's have maintained over the years and are not just knocking for knocking's sake (if that makes sense). Something is going wrong and many of us are bewildered and worried for the future of our favourite pubs and ales. Without this website we might not have known the bigger picture or had any opportunity to voice our views - which surely must get through to SS who are otherwise famously (fatuously?) immune to customer opinion. Can you get Obama on the case?

Offline yank ale drinker

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #21 on: Jul 12 - 2009 »
My frustration (as a former journalist) is that this forum seems to be the ONLY reporting of what is going on.  There seems to be no articles in the big English newspapers.  Is it still thought of as only a small regional issue?

Pubs in general seem to be dropping like flies - are the papers also scared to upset Mr. Smith?

Ah, Obama.  Well, he has his hand in a number of concerns at the moment - he'd probably rather work on this one then face the media in Wash. D.C.

Offline jboycott

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #22 on: Jul 12 - 2009 »
The SS empire has a large property and land portfolio and they are notoriously litigious. They have cost my local council lots of money in legal fees and hold up planning processes and development for years. sometimes there is some sense in their protection of ye olde england, at other times they seem vexatious (arsey). Tadcaster is like a personal fiefdom. As a large landowner and rich family they will no doubt have a lot of "influence". Welcome to the UK and it's arcane post-feudal hierarchy.
ps send Obama a bottle of Oatmeal and he'll soon realize there are more important things to save than the world!

Offline yank ale drinker

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #23 on: Jul 12 - 2009 »
Well, that pretty much explains it. Tradition and a team of lawyers generally trumps all.

We have the same thing in the U.S., but it doesn't involve centuries of land-holding, just good 'ol $$$.  Litigation is great if you have the dollars to keep fighting and scaring off the opposition.

On a somewhat different tangent - I am off for a conference in Sacramento, CA - and excited to visit a British Pub.  http://www.foxandgoose.com/ SS in bottles, but I am hoping their Fullers is the real hand-pumped stuff!

Crossed fingers common sense and some fairness enters into the situation.

Offline blueboy

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #24 on: May 28 - 2010 »
Well its been a long time since I posted on this site, mainly because I have grown to hate everything and anything to do with the Smiths or O'Brien.
To read the posts as I have just done, after such a long absence, brings it all back to me again, working for peanuts all hours of the day as senior barman. I was actually the manager, but as I could do nothing on my own without permission from the Fuhrer or his henchman O'Brien I demoted my title to senior barman because I wasn't managing the pub I was just selling beer.
I read of sackings relating to percentage sales, and of Bonds which when I was working for Smiths increased illegally to ?1000.
Since I have left the Smiths employ (ammicably serving my full notice), I am 100% happier. I have a new job which I enjoy, and when my shift ends I clock off and thats it until next day. No worrying come holiday time as to whether or not a relief will turn up.
I very rarely visit any pubs now, the 16 years experience with Sams has completely taken my interest away from the licensed trade even as a customer.
To be honest, when I do have a beer, I would sooner pay the extra for a little accompanying music or television sport, and it gives me comfort to know that I am contributing nothing to Smithy's coffers.
To all of you discontented employees (as I was) get out and get out now, the grass is much greener believe me.
My wife and I had no house so we contacted our housing authority and local councillor to explain how the job was making us so unhappy and we just had to get out as it was affecting our health. Whilst this was being considered we each sorted a job out and walked from Smiffy's grasp to a new life.
I have had so many friends at Smiths dealt with at tribunals, or sacked that someone out there needs to take up the story of the Smiths empire and break him.
I have read F-ing Obrien has finished. I would love to meet up with him to wish him well.
Good luck to you all

Offline fishy

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #25 on: Sep 10 - 2012 »
the crazy world of Humphrey Smith,
my partner & I worked for Sams for 2 years, and i have to thank Humph for teaching me a few important things, We now have a free house serving whatever beers my customers want, we serve home cooked, locally sourced food, we have live music nights & an open Mic night, and we have a TV (only one, sound usually off unless sports on) so i'd like to thank H. W. Smith for showing me the wrong way to run a pub.

Offline OldBreweryDrinker

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #26 on: Sep 10 - 2012 »
the crazy world of Humphrey Smith,
my partner & I worked for Sams for 2 years, and i have to thank Humph for teaching me a few important things, We now have a free house serving whatever beers my customers want, we serve home cooked, locally sourced food, we have live music nights & an open Mic night, and we have a TV (only one, sound usually off unless sports on) so i'd like to thank H. W. Smith for showing me the wrong way to run a pub.

It is definately the most interesting of the pub groups in the united kingdom. With the scale of the companies and it's different operations besides brewing. Did you work for SS a few yearsa go when the training course lasted over a 6 month period, rather than the 4 days of training you get nowadays. This include the personal license to.

Once out of the SSOB regime, running your own pub with music, tv's and homemade food it is a big change. Good luck to you in your new venture.
The opinions that I express are my own !! A Fan of SSOB products. Time for a pint of OBB

Offline Oddedd7

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #27 on: Dec 8 - 2013 »
I used to work for St Humph as well , also had the untrammelled joy of him as my area manager!!
 One evening he walked into my pub and while i was in another room one of my regulars , on seeing his well turned out person " if you're skint love , I'll get you a half " and did so!!!! (before anyone could tell her who he was .Genuinely one of the funniest things i've ever seen and heard in a pub.

Offline suzyapril

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #28 on: Jan 16 - 2014 »
I worked at the Rugby Tavern in Hull from 1986 - 1990. my manager was Dave Roberts who moved to the Sun Inn in Long Marston. I thoroughly enjoyed my time there

Offline Regular

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Re: "I used to work for Sam Smiths"
« Reply #29 on: Jan 16 - 2014 »
I worked at the Rugby Tavern in Hull from 1986 - 1990. my manager was Dave Roberts who moved to the Sun Inn in Long Marston. I thoroughly enjoyed my time there


You're lucky to have worked for Sam's when you did, and then got out when you did. It used to be a great company to work for, before the mad tramp lost his marbles, compassion, humanity, and common decency. Personally, I think he should be locked up (or extradited) for his own safety - and to stop the constant suffering he's putting decent people through.

History will eventually show this individual for what he truly is - and the rest of the family will have to endure the shame, for letting things continue the way they are - proving either their complete ignorance, or similar lack of humanity and compassion.

I'm sure, society will look back on these gloomy days, (as they have with other serial offenders) and ask; "..how the hell did he get away with it for so long?"