The main traits required for any hospitality job are strong motivation, a sociable personality, flexibility and hard-working determination. The best hospitality jobs involve working your way up through hard work and good customer service skills. Since customers are coming to live with you for a night or longer, you have to be prepared to meet or exceed their expectations. It has often been said that hospitality people are “Type A”- outgoing personalities.
Many Hotel General Managers have started their hotel career as a line employee. Some have been bellmen, night auditors, front desk clerks, restaurant managers, housekeeping or maintenance managers. Some have been Executive Chefs at their hotels prior to becoming a General Manager. Since great Chefs can make as much or more than a General Manager, it is often a switch they decide to make when they get burnt out on the kitchen and food departments. Line cooks can often work their way up or take culinary school to advance their career, and there are often school placement programs to assist in finding a job as a Chef.
Hospital Hospitality Jobs offer some of the same positions as a hotel, in that they have a food and menu planning department and customer service departments. You can find hospitality jobs any place that there are customers to be served. Restaurant Managers also can make over $50,000, whether working for a stand alone franchise restaurant, or a five star hotel dining facility. These types of jobs can be found on the internet in general and specialized job search sites.
Food and Beverage Directors oversee the kitchen, restaurant and banquet facilities, as well as the Catering Director, Restaurant and Bar Managers. They have a budget to keep food costs and labor costs in line, and are responsible for overseeing department schedules before posting. Some banquet facilities serve several thousand people in large convention halls and hotels, so they may be paid very well and have a lot of people reporting to them. They are often offered bonus incentive plans to make sure their department meets budget. To find hospitality jobs in this area, it helps to have some type of food management or chef experience. Often, you can work your way up to this position, or find these positions on a hospitality or restaurant jobs website.
Front Office Managers oversee the front desk, bell staff, concierges and night auditors. This is the heart of the hotel, and the most important guest perception of a property, above cleanliness. Reservations, as well as check in and check out make them the first and the last people from the hotel that a guest has contact with or brings a problem to. They are able to set rates, availability and handle any guest complaints that don’t require a General Manager to handle. Front Office Managers have generally worked their way up to their positions by having first been a front desk clerk, night auditor, or reservation agent.
Another of the best hospitality jobs is Director of Sales, who oversees the group convention sales people and generate the high-volume, discount-rated business for the hotel. Many convention hotels depend on usually at least 70% group business, which often includes banquets and food receptions. They are responsible for offering hotel benefits and features that meet or exceed the guest’s needs. If these expectations are not met, a group may not re-book business for the following year. They often have to oversee their group’s conventions from start to finish encouraging re-booking. They also can make very good money with bonus incentive programs in addition to a lucrative salary.
Director of Catering is another of the best hospitality jobs, and they are responsible for overseeing any catered functions, such as banquets or receptions. They are involved in planning, decorating, menu selections, and recommendations to assist a client that wants to impress a group of people. Since often a meeting planner feels personally responsible for the success or failure of a convention, the Director of Catering is there to make sure everything goes off as they planned to make the meeting planner and the hotel look good. Many Director of Catering positions require some banquet, kitchen or sales background.
All of these positions can be worked up internally too through proven experience and successes. Networking in the hotel field is an excellent way to find a job at a competitor of your existing employer, since most employers prefer experienced managers. You can find jobs across the nation, at any location on a hospitality career jobs website. It can be a very lucrative career field to go into without a college degree if you like customer service and don’t mind a little hard work.