Top 12 Qualities Hotel Employers Look for in New Hires
When it comes to hospitality and customer service, “soft skills” are often the difference between a good hotel employee and a great one. Yes, you need the “work skills” to do the job and those skills are often gained through training and experience. But, the soft skills are just as important and you usually gain them through life experience, not just job experience. It makes you better at your job and it’s worth exploring them and developing your abilities in those areas.
Some of the essential traits employers look for in new hires are:
1. Being approachable: Guests need to be comfortable talking with you and letting you know what they need to have a terrific experience at your hotel. You want them to feel at ease interacting with you.
2. Working well under pressure: The hospitality industry is anything but dull. Every day is different and presents new challenges. You have to be able to appear calm amidst the chaos and still get the job done.
3. Having a positive attitude: Maintain a positive attitude when dealing with guests and providing the best possible customer service to everyone. This is a critical trait in all teams, it makes you a pleasure to work with and builds better relationships overall.
4. Being open and aware of cultural differences: You’ll be interacting with guests from all over the world who may not share your cultural beliefs or values. In order to make them comfortable, you’ll need to be open to differences and aware of cultural barriers.
5. Being empathetic: As the industry embraces more technology and automation, it’s important to remember you’re in a service-based career and people are your focus. You can provide personalized service by actively listening and understanding what the guest needs and how they may be feeling (tired, frustrated, etc.) when they arrive at your hotel.
6. Being able to communicate effectively: In addition to actively listening, being able to communicate clearly ensures better customer satisfaction. Your goal is to create repeat business by giving your guests a wonderful experience at your hotel.
7. Being organized: You’ll be multi-tasking all day as a busy, hotel employee and being organized at your station will allow you to do your job more efficiently. Employers want to know that you can handle the fast-paced, varied workload and still offer excellent customer service.
8. Being flexible: You’ll often have to work unusual or longer hours than you planned so you have to be able to switch gears when unexpected situations arise. You’ll be more valuable to your manager if you can work in multiple areas and expand your skill set.
9. Being a good problem-solver: Being able to think on your feet and contribute to good solutions is a valuable skill. You’ll need to think creatively, act independently and resolve issues within company policies and procedures.
10. Showing commitment: This is at the top of the “soft skills” list of many managers. Being willing to do what it takes to keep customers happy and create repeat business shows you are thorough and understand the importance of customer service.
11. Being a strong leader: In the hospitality industry, being a leader is important. Demonstrating the ability to get projects done and make positive contributions to the team makes a huge difference in the success of the hotel overall.
12. Sharing your enthusiasm: Great hotel employees love what they do and are warm and inviting. They care about giving guests the best possible experience and truly enjoy serving others.
Certifications and education are also very important, but the soft skills and personality traits that draw you to the hospitality industry will give you an advantage in your future success in the industry.