Guest excellence is at the very heart of what we do a Merlin. Whether someone's working at a theme park Resort, LEGOLAND, Madame Tussauds, or in an office, we are all connected by our guest obsession. That's why our Guest Excellence teams are vital to providing top-class service, and Bethany Bairstow-Morris is an example of a fantastic Team Leader at Alton Towers Resort! 

Wicker Man Alton Towers Resort

So Bethany, when did you first start your Merlin career? 

I first joined Merlin in 2019 working at the Alton Towers Resort as a seasonal Sales & Customer Services Host in the Resort Box Office. Five months into the role I was promoted to Team Leader, which is the same role I am in now, although the department has changed slightly and I am now ‘Guest Excellence Team Leader’. I wanted to work for Merlin because I am passionate about creating fun, memorable experiences in the entertainment industry.

And what does a 'day in the life' look like for you as a Guest Excellence Team Leader? 

A day in the life of a Guest Excellence Team Leader can be SO different day-to-day! I come in and brief the team ready for the day and we always try to do an energiser activity to get us all motivated. We’ll then open up Guest Services ready for when the park opens at 9 am. I attend a morning briefing to report on the Resort’s KPI scores from yesterday and WTD, and catch up with any important info from other department contacts for the day. For the rest of the day, I am on hand to assist the Guest Excellence Team who supports our guests throughout their visit with any accessibility needs as well as resolving guest feedback on the day.

I am also often on call for any other team members around the Resort who may require assistance resolving on-the-day guest feedback. In between all this, I respond to guest feedback that has come in via email and support our feedback team with their cases too. At the end of the day, I will cash up Guest Services and help the team close up and tidy ready for the next day!

And what's the biggest challenge in your role? 

One of the biggest challenges of the role is never quite knowing what to expect. It is incredibly important to be able to really listen to the guests who come to see us and be able to think on our feet to create a resolution that has a positive outcome for both the guest and the business.

So what would you say is the most rewarding part of your career? 

I am truly passionate about being able to help completely turn our guest’s experiences around. We know how great Merlin can be at creating magical and memorable experiences, but sometimes things don’t go to plan. This is where we step in and it’s really great knowing that your input has been able to restore a guest’s faith in the business!

Alton Towers House

Is there anything you've learned so far? 

I have learned so much in my role over the last few years, however, I think the area I’ve learned the most about has to be accessibility! Merlin as a whole has been on a huge learning journey in terms of accessibility and I’ve really become passionate about ensuring the Resort is as accessible as it can possibly be. I am one of the Resort’s Accessibility Champions and I’m enjoying taking every opportunity to learn about the changes we can all make to create a world that is accessible to all.

And what would you say is your proudest accomplishment? 

I am really proud of a project I am currently working on… the Alton Towers Resort Guest Obsessed Ambassador Scheme! It’s still my little baby at the moment, but I’m very excited to see what we can achieve once it’s launched!

So what's your favourite perk working for Merlin? 

Well… I think most people would usually say TICKETS! However, I am so far from a thrill seeker it’s actually funny that I work at the UK’s favourite theme park! But the free tickets are a really great perk of the job, getting to visit Merlin’s other attractions with family and being able to let friends use my free theme park tickets and knowing they’ve had a really magical day out.

Merlin Magic Pass

And finally, what skills are needed to be successful in your role? 

Good listening skills and empathy are incredibly important in this job. It’s important that our guests feel they can trust you and put their family holiday or romantic weekend away in your safe hands. You then need to be able to think on your feet and put yourself in the guest’s shoes to work out what the best options are to make sure the guest leaves you knowing their problem is resolved and their faith in the Resort is restored.