10 Tell-Tale Signs You Have the "Hospitality Gene"
The "hospitality gene" remains an abstract, if not elusive theory used to describe the consummate professionals who treat hospitality as more than a service, but as an art. Here are 10 characteristics of people fortunate enough to have the hospitality gene:
They truly enjoy serving others. Those with an innate talent for hospitality want to make others feel genuinely welcomed, putting a smile on their face and connecting with them in the same authentic way they would connect with new friends and new additions to their own families. Conversely, they also want to put things to right when a guest or a customer is dissatisfied as opposed to taking a confrontational approach to resolve the situation. Service is to the hospitality gene carrier what adventure sports are to the adrenaline junkie.
They want to exceed guests’ expectations. These are the people who will go the extra mile to deliver, but also to impress. They pride themselves on seeing the ‘wow factor’ through to fruition and will invest the time and effort into doing so.
They will stop what they’re doing to assist. While most people will become annoyed when interrupted in the middle of a task, carriers of the hospitality gene will welcome the interruption if it means they can meet someone else’s needs and be part of creating an exceptional experience.
They enjoy working as a team in order to achieve successful results. Too often, we consider the ‘work’ in teamwork, but anyone with the hospitality gene views their role on a team as most of us would when working with a group to plan a surprise party. Sure, different tasks will be delegated to various team members. But everyone shares the same eager anticipation of a successful end game.
Smiling comes naturally to them. There are those of us who sometimes need to remind ourselves to smile, especially in strained situations. Then there are the people with the hospitality gene who have a natural ability to see the silver linings. Their positive attitudes are usually contagious.
They have a knack for detail. These are the people who never lose sight of the forest for the trees. They may have a work responsibility that needs to be carried out urgently, but if they see a piece of litter on the floor, they’ll stop to pick it up and put it in a bin. If they hear a guest mention their favorite flavor of ice cream, they’ll remember it and see that it’s served to that guest when they’re least expecting it.
They relish meeting new people. Those with the hospitality gene are often naturally skilled communicators who enjoy talking to people that they don’t yet know and look for opportunities to potentially learn something from their new acquaintances, gain fresh ideas or just find another unique spin on the world around them.
They take initiative. Those lucky enough to possess the hospitality gene don’t wait for someone to tell them to do something. If they see something needs to be done, they do it and they do it happily. These are not people who need a lot of hand-holding.
They have emotional intelligence. This is another trait that can be difficult to design. It is essentially the ability to “read” people or put more succinctly, empathizing with others –understanding their current feeling without explicitly being told what that emotion is—rather than just showing sympathy when another person is going through a difficult time.
They are passionate networkers. People with the hospitality gene look to build relationships wherever they can –in their personal lives, in the workplace as well as in the community. They pride themselves on having the interpersonal skills that allow them to get to know other people on more than just a superficial level and want more from their relationships than to just “transact.”