Robin Goodchild

Department Manager (Ride)

“I first worked with Merlin Entertainments Group in 2000, when I joined the Admissions team at Thorpe Park on a work placement from University. I enjoyed it so much that I returned there the next year after gaining my degree (a 2:1 in Tourism and Business Management). Over the next few years I worked in the admissions team at Chessington World of Adventures, and then as Area Team Leader back at Thorpe Park, where I picked up many of the skills that have helped me in my career so far.

“When I first came in as a work placement student, it was because I'd decided that commercial experience of the leisure and tourism industry would benefit me most. And to be honest, I couldn't think of anywhere else where I thought I might have nearly as much fun. Sure, I'd joined to gain valuable commercial experience – but it turned out to be much more than that. I did not expect to make so many new friends, or for there to be such variety in the work. Every day is different when helping customers, and that's what inspired me to pursue a career here.

Real opportunities- real development

“My life suits me more than I could have imagined. I've never wanted a desk job, and Merlin Entertainments Group has provided me with the opportunities to get out there and enjoy myself. I never expected to be offered as many opportunities to develop, either through progression within the company or through any of the numerous training courses on offer. I have learned and developed many new skills over the last six years, and it's all thanks to those courses.

“On the Coca-Cola London Eye, there's no such thing as a typical day. I actually perform two roles, the first being that of Ride Department Manager. There are three of us, and each is responsible for a different area of the operation. I look after the day-to-day-running of the Waterloo Millennium Pier, and also the running of the ride. My responsibility is to provide support for the pier controllers and the ride team leaders, so that they can all do their jobs to the best of their ability.

“Department Managers also rotate the responsibility of being Duty Manager. This involves ensuring that all areas of the daily operation run smoothly. As and when a live issue arises which affects any part of the operation, the acting Duty Manager makes the decision as to how to resolve it. It's a role I really enjoy, as it encourages you to think on your feet. It's also as an excellent way to get to know different parts of the business.

The people that make the difference

“The best thing about this job is undoubtedly the people! In my six years with the company I have met and worked with some fantastic people from all walks of life, many of whom are now firm friends. And having moved to the Coca-Cola London Eye, I can honestly say that it's the people here who keep the wheel turning.

“Merlin Entertainments Group invests a lot in staff training, which in turn encourages people with very diverse backgrounds and different personalities to express themselves and develop their talents. Personally, I enjoy working with people that can get the best out of me. I would go insane if I had to work alongside de-motivated, uninspired individuals. This has never been the case with Merlin Entertainments Group. The company lives and breathes its values and I can honestly say that this rubs off on the staff. There is a fun element to everybody's work ethic but also a professionalism that ensures we achieve results!

High standards – consistently achieved

“I will always go out of my way to make the customer's experience more special. I strongly believe that if you lead by example then others will follow, so I'll always make a point of speaking to guests in front of my colleagues. We set ourselves high service standards and if I ever see any of these standards slip then I'll ensure that the next guest receives the best possible attention.

“The Coca-Cola London Eye is a fantastic place to work – it's a modern icon of London. I am proud to be associated with the company that runs it and hope to enjoy many more years of working here.”

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