THE manager of a Poole branch of McDonald’s is among the company’s top one per cent.

Sam Birks, of the company’s Wessex Gate restaurant, was one of only 67 McDonald’s managers in Europe to receive the Ray Kroc Award for outstanding customer service. The winners represent the top one per cent of staff in Europe.

Sam was handed a cash prize and trophy at the gala event in Barcelona hosted by Doug Goare, president of McDonald’s Europe.

She has been working for McDonald’s for 15 years, joining as a shift manager in Southampton and became business manager of the Poole restaurant in June.

She has completed several courses over the years and the McDonald’s Foundation Degree in Managing Business Operation, which combines study with workplace learning.

Sam said: “I have been part of the McDonald’s team for 15 years now, and feel more passionate than ever about the work that I do. I’m really proud of myself for being rewarded for doing something I love and it’s inspiring knowing you are making a difference, not only to the business, but to your community as well.”