We're diving back into our Staff Spotlight series with a bittersweet entry - Martin, one of the pillars of TNG•Snelling is making moves and we've got to say goodbye.
We asked him if he was leaving because he didn't love us anymore - but he promised that wasn't the case! "I've been accepted to a Professional Naturalist Fellowship at Eagle Bluff Environmental Learning Center in Lanesboro, where I'll be an educator for students from elementary to high school for a year."
Marty started at TNG•Snelling way, way back in April 2017 - primarily because one of his good friends (Jessie!) was working here. "I grew up in a restaurant family, so I knew what kind of work was involved - it was an easy fit for me. But really the coworkers were the strongest draw." Since then, he's worked nearly every position, from dishwashing, to the counter, to making pitas. "The dishwashing was actually great, until I realized I couldn't keep up!" But his favorite role at the shop? "Since I started working in the back-of-house, I realized how much I missed the customers! People get used to having totally mundane experiences with other people, and I love to challenge myself to make every single interaction more than just transactional. Like, real conversations - those are important, and nobody has them when they go into whatever place to get food!"
Okay, but what was his favorite part? He couldn't pick! Here's his top three:
"1. Dedication to authenticity & education - you get to learn, help customers learn and stay true to the cuisine.
2. My coworkers! Even the people I didn't know before - more than any other job I've had, here I'm actually good friends with the people I work with.
3. The food, really. Like, the food. It's so good."
We asked Martin for some parting words before he goes off to pursue his passions. We'll let him take it away --
"Look for my name on the ballot when I run for office on a single-issue platform: every 18 year-old should work in a restaurant for a minimum of 2 years!"