What skills do you need for a career in hotel management?

If you are people-oriented, focused on customer service, and think you can make a big difference at a venue that you love, then hotel management could be an excellent career choice. A job in this industry would entail working hard to make and establishment run smoothly and going the extra mile to make sure your customers have the best possible experience. Whether you end up working in a high-end London establishment, or a popular Brighton hotel, you’ll be able to excellently utilize your new -found skills. If you have the passion for the industry, but you’re unsure how to get your career off to a good start, follow this useful career guide.

Get your foot in the door with an apprenticeship 

Sometimes learning on the job can be the most effective way to gain new skills. Starting off with an apprenticeship could be a great way to start your career if you’re a school leaver or you’re simply looking to gain the relevant qualifications to become a hotel manager. There are various hospitality apprenticeship providers in the UK, and generally they all provide formal training and a salary while working, with mentoring and coaching from industry professionals. Apprenticeships are praised for their combination of teaching and vocational skills, and many big firms within the hospitality sector have taken heed from this by launching their own apprentice schemes. The levels range from intermediate to advanced, and they all provide in-depth understandings of the subject. If you are just starting out, then opt for a level 3 hospitality management apprenticeship. After completion, you can take on a Level 4 qualification. They are nationally recognised certificates and are known to facilitate career progression, equipping candidates with a wealth of experience for their future career. 

Achieve a related university degree 

If you want to learn as much as possible before getting hands-on with the job, there are many hospitality degrees to choose from. Options range from hospitality management to tourism and leisure-based programs. These degrees will provide practical theory skills with the opportunity to undertake placements in a relevant hospitality setting. It is more important than ever for graduates to stand out form their peers, as the job market is seriously competitive nowadays. Recent findings from Glassdoor show that the average corporate job advert attracts a staggering 250 CVs. Considering this, graduates need to pursue any avenue that will set them apart from the crowd, and in a hotel management role experience is hugely advantageous. Alongside your studies or during the long summer break, students looking to secure a career in the industry should be seeking work experience, to allow them to demonstrate and develop a familiarity with the environment that they hope to be directing themselves eventually. Around 75.6% of hospitality management graduates are shown to have secured employment within six months of graduating, a promising statistic for current or future students. 

Build up your skill set

As you would expect, the best place to start before you embark on your career in hotel management is by acquiring the relevant skills. In terms of the desirable skill set, ideal candidates will be excellent communicators, approachable, and natural problem solvers who can demonstrate their ability to efficiently act under pressure. Roles within hotel management will expose individuals to a breadth of hectic situations that will require the use of initiative, so potential recruits should be able to show confidence and conviction in these scenarios. The ability to deal with more than one task at hand is also valued in this profession, as more often than not a hotel manager will be dealing with more than one issue simultaneously. Maintaining standards throughout the establishment is also paramount to the role of a hotel manager, and hopeful recruits should ideally have a keen eye for detail. 

You will need many different technical skills to excel in this industry. These range from mathematical skills to negotiating contracts with suppliers and managing a vast quantity of information at any given point. A hotel manager will be involved in every aspect of the venue, from catering services to front of house and housekeeping. Therefore, prospective employees should be able to demonstrate the ability to process and act upon information. Salary expectations will vary depending on location, but the current starting rate for a hotel manager is anywhere in the region of £20,000 to £40,000. The role involves a diverse range of opportunities, including networking opportunities, and it is certainly true that no two days will be the same for a hospitality management professional. The role also breaks away from the conventional idea of a 9-5 working day, so candidates should prepare to embrace a working life which presents both flexibility and new challenges in a non-rigid way. 

Work your way up a business 

Yet another way to achieve your dream role in the hotel industry is by building up your skills on the job and working your way up a business internally. Many employees begin in a casual position within a hotel and work their way up over time where relevant training will most likely be provided by an employer. This method can really broaden your knowledge of the industry and give you a great insight about the mechanisms of hotel management, as you will appreciate the contributions to day-to-day running which go on far below the position of a hotel manager. Those within the hospitality industry who do choose to progress internally benefit from having a longer-standing knowledge of the working environment. 

Hopefully, you’ve now got a bit more of an idea about how to begin your dream career in hotel management. From varied working days to meeting new people and helping boost customer satisfaction, this job can be an exciting, rewarding career option. If you think it could be for you, consider which route into employment would suit you best and enjoy your journey there! You could end up working for the best in the business