Ben Ngubesilo has worked at Spier for the past 15 years. He loves interacting with different people – which is just as well because, as banqueting manager responsible for the smooth running of the many events held on the farm, he certainly encounters a lot of them!
What’s the best thing about Spier?
It’s a very supportive environment where you’re really encouraged to reach your potential. The family owners are true custodians of the farm – they take a very long-term approach that prioritises value over profit.
What do you love most about your job?
I love meeting with different people all the time. We host many different kinds of events at Spier – everything from weddings and conferences to intimate private dinners – so you get to interact people from all sorts of different backgrounds and parts of the world.
What is your greatest strength?
I’m good at sharing information with people and patiently teaching them until they understand.
How do you make a positive difference to the environment?
I encourage my team to sort the rubbish bins accordingly: we take recycling very seriously at the conference centre, with less than 2% of waste sent to the landfill: we’re currently on a mission to get this to 0.
What’s the most valuable advice you’ve ever received?
A positive attitude can make you a CEO of the company.
Who inspires you?
The former Spier Hotel GM Andrew Dietrich gave me the foundation I needed to become a leader.
What do you get up to when you’re not at work?
I watch sport and comedy movies.
Where is your favourite part of the farm?
The food garden. This is where herbs, fruit and vegetables are grown for Spier’s restaurants – without any harmful artificial fertilisers or harmful pesticides. It reminds me so much of my father’s garden.
What’s your favourite season?
Summer. You can go for picnic, play outdoors and cool off at the beach.
What’s the key to being happy in life?
Take any complaints as a challenge and see them as learning curve.
What are you proudest of having achieved?
Being appointed Banqueting Manager. When I first joined Spier I was a runner.
What advice do you have for someone trying to get into your line of work?
Skills will never fall from the trees – you’ve got to seek out learning if you want to progress.
Visit the Spier Website: http://www.spier.co.za