Hospitality Management is much more than "just flipping burgers," according to Lake Michigan College program coordinator and instructor Cynthia Long. A degree in hospitality leads to careers that help run one of the largest components of the American economy.
To be successful in hospitality management, you need to
- anticipate and meet the needs of customers
- have good supervisory skills to work with employees
- have good written and verbal communication skills
- be able to pick up on non-verbal cues and body language
- understand good business practices
In a profession where people have a wide variety of needs, it is important to understand that customers don't always tell you what they need, making it vital to be able to read verbal and non-verbal cues, communicate clearly, and exercise patience.
Imagine a weary traveler who has lost his luggage and has entered your hotel looking for a room. As a hotel front office manager, you will need to be able to read his expressions and body language to provide the interaction and service that will make his stay as pleasant as possible.
In addition to serving the customer, you will need to understand the basic principles of running a business including human resource and managerial skills, planning, leadership skills, and how to management money and resources.
Understanding a second language, especially Spanish, is becoming more and more important. Hispanics are the fastest growing minority group in the United States. Knowing basic Spanish will help you communicate to a wider group of employees and customers.
Other skills you'll need include:
- Management of personnel resources - Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work. The ability to determine the best people for the job.
- Number ability - The ability to add, subtract, multiply, or divide quickly and accurately.
- Clerical - Ability to administer clerical procedures and systems, such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography, designing forms, and other office procedures.
- English language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language, including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar.