Manchester based hospitality recruitment specialists Sixty Eight People have added to their internal talent roster. The move comes ahead of plans for national expansion, along with the launch of their new training and development arm, Class of 68.

Cally Bannon-Smith joins Sixty Eight People as Head Coach. Her previous 14 years heading up training at Living Ventures saw her playing a key role in developing material for showstopper brands such as Australasia, The Alchemist & The New World Trading Co.

Class of 68 will look to supplement Sixty Eight’s established recruitment offer by adding wraparound training services, both for existing recruitment clients and beyond.

The intention is to help businesses create happy, successful teams – feeding directly into their mission to help the industry grow, re-stabilise and face the challenges caused by the ‘mass exodus’ of the workforce following the pandemic. With a projected 120,000 vacancies currently in the sector, Bannon-Smith intends to support operators create their training frameworks and deliver industry leading management workshops.

Class of 68 will help companies attract and retain a diverse cross section of team members, increase representation across marginalised communities, and ensure that leadership teams are equipped to deal with the reality of operating in a people-first sector. 

Bespoke programmes are on offer, as well as a selection of ‘off-the-peg’ courses such as ‘Radical, Candid Leadership’, ‘Wellness in Hospitality’ and ‘Searching for Superstars’

Bannon-Smith says of her appointment;

‘I’m so excited to join a team as innovative and passionate as Sixty Eight. Together, I think we have something really unique to offer – there’s a huge gap in the market for hospitality focused management training that gives leaders the tools they need to retain talent. We have the expertise to help the industry we adore find a way to be a more attractive career option’.

Their upcoming Sixty Eight Exec division will look to source director level appointments, launching in tandem with the company’s advance into northern cities such as Newcastle and Edinburgh. In preparation, Sixty Eight has added their first non-exec director to their existing board.

Joining Founder Abi Dunn and MD Charlotte Kemp is Manchester based hospitality and marketing consultant Lucy Noone Blake, whose experience in the North West and national hospitality sector will serve to help navigate their next steps.

Dunn says;

‘We are delighted to have Lucy join us a non-exec. Her straight-talking approach, industry expertise and wealth of connections can really help us in the next stage of our growth. Having an unbiased third party feels like the right thing to be doing, and I couldn’t think of anyone better than a long-term 68 supporter and our friend Lucy.’