Being a manager is a job that requires special qualities and qualifications and being a manager in the hospitality sector requires particular ones. This is a sector which demands absolute customer service excellence. Hotels have to provide accommodation, food and tourist information. As a manager, you have to ensure that your customers’ stay is comfortable and stress free. With the average salary of a hotel manager in the US being $47,249, it is an attractive and competitive field. Here are the qualities, skills and qualifications you need to get into this role.
Determination and dedication
Being a hospitality manager will require you to work unsociable hours in order to keep your business running effectively. Expect to work weekends, evenings and during holidays. Your customers will be on their vacations, but you will be working hard to ensure that they have a great time. You will have to make sacrifices in other areas of your life, so determination and dedication are two qualities that you will need.
Planning and organisation
As a manager you will have to plan all aspects of the hotel’s management. That includes staff rosters, recruitment, spending and budgets, while dealing with contractors and even meeting and greeting customers. You have to know how to organise your time and how to plan the tasks and work schedules of your employees.
An eye for quality
Hospitality is all about making the customer feel welcome and relaxed. As the manager, it is ultimately up to you how good a customer’s stay tends to be. You need to be able to identify high-quality hospitality staff who provide the best possible service, as well making sure that the accommodations are comfortable, and that all public areas look nice. Of course, not every hotel can be The Ritz-Carlton, but you should aim to offer comfort and quality at every price level.
Friendliness and communication
As a hotel manager, you will need excellent people skills. As well as dealing with employees on a regular basis, you may also need to talk to customers who have complaints or even just to welcome them to the establishment. When important decisions are made, you must be able to tell employees so that they can carry on with their jobs in light of these decisions.
As well as making day to day decisions about the general running of the business, you will also need to make strategic decisions about the direction of the business. It will be up to you to pursue a particular marketing campaign or to go for a maintenance contractor or to refurbish the interior of your hotel. You will need understanding of budgeting and forecasting to ensure that decisions benefit the customers and the business.
As well as the right personal qualities and skills, you need to have experience in hospitality and customer service in order to be effective in a hospitality management role. You have to be able to understand your customer service employees and you must have experience of dealing with customers in a polite and helpful manner. Every customer and interactions are different and the more experience you have under your belt, the more prepared you will be for dealing with dissatisfied customers. Management and planning experience will also be needed to ensure that you can handle the complexities of running a business. With experience comes confidence and with confidence you can make decisions and guide employees.
The right qualifications
Hospitality management is not something that you can just walk into – as well as having the right skills and experience, you need to be qualified to manage. If you want to get into the hospitality field, then a high-quality degree or qualification will help you along very well. A hotel management degree will teach you various skills such as business management and recognising the specialist requirements of the hospitality industry. It will also help you understand the various health and safety and legal risks there are when running a hotel. It will also provide opportunities for you to gain work experience in the industry to prepare you for working life.
Being in hospitality management is not an easy job. As well as keeping customers happy and relaxed, you need to run a business with several employees and make decisions to keep it all going. You will require a variety of skills and requirements, as well as the right experience and top-quality qualifications. If you do manage to get into it, however, you will find a challenging and rewarding profession that offers progression and prestige.