A Vatel 2013 alumnus, Alexis Jebejian in now the Area Operations Manager of Maison Kayser in the USA.
A “Parisian” company that New Yorkers love and one that is growing by leaps and bounds, as 10 shops were opened in the US in only five years and seven others are scheduled to open in 2017.
Heading a team made up of 20 managers that he supervises every day of the week, Alexis tells us more and explains his managerial vision. Portrait of a young and dynamic man, wise beyond his age.
“I’ve always been attracted by jobs in the hospitality and tourism management fields. When I was little, I was more impatient to discover the hotel we’d be staying in than where were actually were going on our vacation.
I hesitated for a long time between a general and a technical high school diploma. I finally decided to to a general one with the idea of applying for a hotel management school later. The younger generations still often think that you can’t do quality higher education courses in a professional environment.
But that’s exactly what we do at Vatel. This prepares us for a host of jobs in the hospitality industry thanks to courses that blend theory and professional experience. Just read Vatelien Success Stories, they all say the same thing!
Each day our different kinds of work gain credibility and prestige and headhunters understand what the name Vatel means on a resume.
Our theoretical courses develop and hone our critical and analytical spirit. When you mix them with practical experience, you can become the one who knows, applies, manages and conveys.
Vatel trains us in the “French Art of Hospitality”, in a very international educative environment. When we graduate, our profiles are interesting for recruitment officers, as we can:
- do different kinds of work,
- any place in the world,
- with all types of clients,
- while managing teams of multiple nationalities.
Our internships are always important moments in our curriculum. My first one in Courchevel confirmed that I had made the right decision and the last one at Potel & Chabot, where my Director congratulated me, is when I finished my life as a student and I was ready to go to work as a professional.
An opportunity in New York
I graduated from Vatel in 2013 with the ambition of working either in North America, England or the Middle East to keep on improving my English. And one day I stumbled upon a job vacancy in New York that the Vatel Alumni network had posted: the Maison Kayser was looking for managers ready to take on the challenge of managing bakeries, pastry shops, restaurants and cafés that were opening in the country.
That very same year I was hired as the Floor Manager for the Kayser Colombus Circle shop, which has 2,000 clients per day. I worked for the entire time they were getting ready to open, from the construction stage, to the hiring stage and when they first opened their doors.
I took care of:
- weekly order forecasts with the company’s three Corporate Chefs
- payroll management for employees
- supervision of the restaurant (50 seats)
- managing the bakery and cafe
- general facility maintenance.
New York is a city filled with very communicative energy. Like we say here: “Paris is breathtaking, but New York is still the most vibrant city in the world.”
Americans always “think big” and constantly question themselves. Even though Americans admire our prestige and traditions, they don’t really understand our managerial system. I consequently learned never to impose, but always to propose, while explaining my decisions and managing any changes.
I work hard and that’s what allowed me, at the end of 2015, to be hired as the Manager of five of the ten Kayser shops in New York. And I’m not going to stop there! But that’s another story that I’ll tell you later ;) ” Alexis Jebejian