BlogThursday 14 Jan 2016

Earn as you learn – why hospitality is a great career stepping stone

Watch good bar attendants and you’re sure to see some common traits. The most effective bar attendants are good listeners, socially perceptive and can quickly identify customer needs. In fact they’re always looking at extra ways to help people. They can also make people feel special and are great team players in a workplace.

Sounds like the sort of traits that anyone would want to develop to become job ready. 
Indeed, Australian research has shown that working in hospitality is a great help in developing the important people and communication skills that you need to climb the corporate ladder when you’ve finished your studies. It’s well known that employers are on the lookout for people with these critical skills in emotional intelligence, whether they’re hiring veterinary nurses, computer programmers or project managers.   

Right now, across Australia there are around 82,000 people working as either bar attendants or baristas. That puts these jobs in the top decile for careers in demand when rated against all jobs. (Australian Government, Job Outlook 2015) By the end of 2019 there are expected to be more than 50,000 new jobs in this profession – enough to replace people leaving the industry and even more to cater for the extra demand expected.
So how does this affect you as a student? Most students will have to do some sort of part-time or full-time work while studying to keep financially afloat. So, why not make it in a growth area where jobs are plentiful and the skills are portable and adaptable to your future career?

Here’s the seven most important skills you will develop as a bar attendant or barista and the careers they can advantage you in. See the full list here:

Skills Skill explanation Careers that use these skills
Active listening The art of giving full attention to what people are saying, taking time to understand the points they’re making and asking appropriate questions to really engage in the conversation.     Social worker, Advocate, Child care, aged care or disability care worker, Manager
Service orientation Actively looking for ways to help people without necessarily being prompted. Teacher, Assessor, Graphic designer, Consultant, Real estate agent, Property manager
Social perceptiveness Being aware of other people’s reactions. Understanding why they react as they do in different situations. Human resource manager, Safety advisor, Market researcher, Child care centre manager, Community worker, Trainer/assessor
Speaking Articulating ideas clearly and succinctly using language the customer can understand Animal carer, Disability advocate, Pharmacy assistant, Receptionist, Sales consultant, Customer service advisor
Critical thinking Weighing up strengths, weaknesses and alternative solutions to a problem or situation Computer technician, Systems analyst, Project manager, Sustainability officer, Accountant, Bookkeeper
Coordination Adjusting actions in relation to other’s actions Event manager, Hospitality coordinator, Payroll officer, Executive assistant, Office administrator, Nanny
Monitoring Monitoring/assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action Quality officer, Small business operator, Department manager, Case co-ordinator, Employment co-ordinator, BAS consultant


So, anytime is a great time to get organised, get your RSA and find a job that will hone your people skills. To find courses at North Coast TAFE, explore now.

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