Welcome to the first piece in the series of Hospitality Industry Careers - the "secret" hospitality jobs.
My name is Maria and as your host, I am here to help hospitality students and graduates succeed in their careers through industry tips and career advice.
This is the first piece of the Hospitality Industry Careers series and today we’re looking at Hotel Careers.
See the hotel as more than the building itself and discover an endless amount of career opportunities!
The purpose of this series is to show you the full picture of the hospitality industry and the careers within it. Because I firmly believe that the better informed you are about the reality of your career options, the better decisions you are going to make.
Now, the first topic in this hospitality careers series is Hotel Careers.
If you prefer to consume this in video format, here's the link tot he YouTube video:
First, let's look at some hotel sector stats
4 Hotel Statistics to get in the mood
Global Hotel Industry Total Retail Value
600.49bn USD. That's a lot!...
Average Daily Rate in Hotels in Europe
129.70 USD. What do you think about that? The difference between budget and luxury is huge but the average is still pretty low!
In 2017 US Traveler Favourite Hotel Loyalty Programme was
Marriott Rewards! Now, of course, called Marriott Bonvoy.
Most Valuable Hotel Brand in 2020...
Hilton Hotels & Resorts! Wohoo!
Now that we're in the hotel mood, let's dive into Hotel Careers!
Planning your career
I bet your first thought when it comes to hotel jobs and careers is something like this: work at the front desk, work your way up to director of rooms, and eventually, become a general manager.
Not only is that no longer the reality of how real hotel careers work, but if you really want to be a General Manager, the future GMs will not have those career paths. 15-20 years from now, they’re going to have very different expectations and skill set requirements. The traditional path will not be enough.
If you want to know more about what jobs there are in every hotel department, to help you get started, check out the Hotel Guide in Resources, where you can learn about every job in a hotel!
By understanding all the bits that make the hotel and how they’re all connected you will see the bigger picture outside of that typical career path.
See the bigger picture
Imagine a hotel building, you have arrived on a business trip. You are entering the building and checking in, walking to your room, jumping on the bed, checking out the bathroom. Got to make sure it's all there!
You then set yourself up at the desk, put your laptop our and your phone to charge. Shortly you call up the guest services and make a dinner reservation at one of the hotel’s restaurants before getting prepared for tomorrow’s event you’re attending at the hotel.
The touchpoints that you’ve interacted with, are bigger than the elements themselves. Let’s expand on them a little more.
On the table below, I split the journey you just imagined into a few segments. I listed some key touchpoints of each segment below.
Each piece in these lists must be supplied by a company and someone must manufacture and produce the item, but even before that, someone must place the order. This is all before the item gets to you.
Are you starting to get the point of the bigger picture?
Now think of all the things you interact with, in a hotel, the room, before you get there and after. Everything is thought through and every picture takes planning and executing.
I’m talking about pen and paper, bed linen, bedding, restaurant china and cutlery, glasses, uniforms, key cards, menus, shampoos, soaps, towels, food to restaurants and so on, not to mention furniture and tech systems that run the hotel.
Someone has supplied all of these items and many of these companies are also hospitality companies. They also operate in the hospitality industry and they are critical to the hospitality industry. Without them, we cannot run our hotels.
Yet we never discuss them as part of our career planning or part of market analysis in school. You just don’t think about them, because you take these things for granted. And you have not been taught to think about them - and that’s a shame.
Working in a hotel, you will interact with these suppliers so you can bring the hotel perspective to the supplier if you ever wanted to shift careers. You will have a huge advantage coming for a hotel - because many people that work there do not come from hospitality, but come from generic supply chain backgrounds.
You will probably get hired quite quickly!
Working for a supplier can open your career up for regional responsibilities across many properties or brand as well as work internationally and travel for business.
These are not jobs you’ve ever considered before, haven’t you? That is just one example.
Imagine that every hotel department and job has more to it than meets the eye.
The bigger picture of some hotel departments
Human resources are not just admin and some training. HR has a whole sector dedicated to training and development where people are serious professional training developers. They create, design, and deliver content to hotel teams and beyond.
It's amazing what you can do in L&D once you dive into it.
Marketing is an obvious one that has a career outside of the hotel, but while on property the team is usually small, which means they do everything from communication to pr, to photography, to brand management, to social media.
Outside of the hotel, these individual careers and have their own exciting complexities (agencies, suppliers, etc.).
Finance is my favourite example of a department in a hotel that is underrated. What do you think they do? Yes, they count the money, making sure the hotel is turning profit, but there are many other elements to it. Check out my blog post on that, explaining all hotel finance jobs.
And of course events. Oh my, that is an industry of its own which we will tackle another day, but apply the same concept of exploring “behind the scenes” careers to events - there is much more than meets the eye.
Hotels and events go hand in hand. Hotels hosting events big and small, while also being facilitators in their own right.
Don’t limit yourself by thinking your only career options are the physical hotel building itself.
Create a vision and start somewhere.
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