The hospitality and tourism industry has faced significant disruption over the past year due to Covid-19 and employees across the industry have faced limited opportunities. However, the industry will rebuild itself and we’ll need to inspire future generations to enter the industry – and those that may have left temporarily, to return.
As the most valuable asset of any business, we should take this opportunity to highlight how resilient, agile and people-focused those that work in hospitality and tourism are.
Those with experience in the industry have an extraordinary set of transferable skills that will be sought-after by hiring employers as the industry begins to recover, including:
- Effective communication – attentive to tone, language and verbal behaviours. The ability to communicate with people doesn’t just rely on being outgoing, bubbly, or talkative, it relies on being able to read people, to understand them inherently and have compassion and respect for individuals, mindful of whatever situation a person is in.
- An ability to work well with people – with compassion, empathy and showing understanding. Everyone’s different and they react to situations in different ways, so being able to get tone of voice right, understand non-verbal behaviours, and being aware of the feelings or thoughts of others is a special skill that can’t be underestimated when dealing with people.
- Cultural intelligence – respectful of diversity & inclusion. The capability to relate and work effectively across cultures requires an understanding of different values and different social norms – but there’s also an emotional intelligence around how to apply that knowledge.
- Confident decision-making. Working in a customer-facing role requires leadership and the ability think on your feet very, very quickly. Those with this experience will be hugely confident and able to quickly and easily dispel conflict – they’ve become well-practiced but they’ve also been trained in it and developed their own capabilities.
- The ability to deal with out of the ordinary situations. When faced with the unexpected it’s important to deal with it in the right way. An ability to read the situation and get the people involved with on board with the resolution is critical. There’s only one of chance to fix it properly and that’s it in
It can often be easy to overlook the value of these skills. They come as second nature to those that work in the industry. But it’s important that people are able to tease these out from their previous experience, recognise their strengths and core values – as it will be these skills that are most valued by employers as the industry starts to rebuild.