How to be the perfect hospitality job candidate in 2018
The hospitality industry is booming but there is always fierce competition for the best jobs, especially in the high-end luxury and resort markets. Employers are looking for candidates with specific skills that set them apart and allow them to succeed in a demanding, fast-paced environment.
Below is a list of skills that many hospitality employers are looking for. Take a look and identify which skills you already have and what you should focus on in your application and interview.
- Number one on every list is customer service. Hospitality is all about people and ensuring they have the best possible experience at your property. Meeting customer expectations and making sure they’re happy ensures they will give your hotel, restaurant or resort positive reviews and come back again when visiting your area.
- Next on the list is great communication skills. That means not only being clear when addressing customer needs but also the ability to actively listen and understand what the guest is telling you. A miscommunication can result in consequences that can affect your property’s reputation. This is an area you can work on to improve to make it one of your strongest attributes.
- Understanding other cultures, customs and behaviors is key in this industry. You’ll be working with and serving people from all over the world. Being aware of cultural differences can help you avoid misunderstandings.
- Organizational skills are a must. You’ll often be juggling several things at once and need to able to prioritize your tasks to get things done efficiently. You’ll need to demonstrate that you can handle a fast-paced and varied workload with confidence.
- Enthusiasm, flexibility, patience and confidence are all “soft skills” that are critical, especially in a leadership position. Your interpersonal skills are not something that can be specifically measured, but are integral to helping you to be a productive team member, act responsibly and adapt more easily to a dynamic environment like hospitality.
- A strong work ethic is another “non-technical” skill that will see you through the long shifts and peak times when the hospitality business can be chaotic. You might be overbooked, understaffed or be facing an unusual challenge, but having a commitment to excellence and a “no-quit” attitude is a highly desirable trait.
- Language skills can also set you apart when competing for jobs in the industry. Knowing another language makes you a stand out when communicating with guests and providing a bonus for the company’s customer service. It may also mean better opportunities for moving up into management sooner than later.
- Problem-solving is a crucial skill in helping you develop solutions that satisfy guests who are tired and/or frustrated. Showing initiative in identifying and solving issues and learning to plan ahead for routine problems that crop up makes you a desirable employee in all areas of the hospitality business.
- Knowing your industry is more than just being a “hotel employee” or “restaurant server or chef.” You have to keep up with the trends, know what your competition is offering and what guests are looking for. Show that you’re interested in more than just one job by demonstrating an understanding of the big picture and willingness to learn and read about the wider world of hospitality.
There are so many opportunities in an industry as diverse as hospitality, but the skills that are key to your success are often very similar. It all depends on providing the highest level of customer service, demonstrating your understanding of the business and being a productive team member.