Avoid these common myths many job seekers still believe.
By Angela Rose for Hcareers.com
Whether your dream is to cook up exciting new dishes or ensure guests have the best vacation of their lives, there’s never been a better time to work in the hospitality industry. According to the U.S. Bureau Labor Statistics, the hospitality industry has added 390,000 jobs over the past 12 months. This is excellent news for hospitality job seekers who should find plenty of rewarding hotel and restaurant opportunities. Of course, in order to secure one, you must be able to distinguish fact from fiction. Consider these common myths many job seekers still believe.
1. You must have experience to work in the hospitality industry.
The fact is, whether you’re searching for your first "real" job or considering a career transition, you can find a position in a restaurant or hotel. Hospitality employers are particularly interested in candidates with exemplary customer service skills and flexible expectations—regardless of their background. You may need to start out as a hotel desk clerk, reservation agent, baggage porter, dishwasher, prep cook, or host / hostess, but hard work, enthusiasm, and professionalism will soon help you work your way up the career ladder.
2. You must have connections to get a job in the hospitality industry.
Certainly, connections can be helpful in securing a job in any industry. This is why networking—in person and online—is such a valuable job search tool. However, plenty of employers award hotel and restaurant positions to qualified professionals who respond to posted job advertisements. If you have the skills and experience required to do the job, you won’t need an inside contact to help you secure an interview.
3. You need to apply for every job if you want to work in hospitality.
While candidates with little to no experience in hospitality may need to be flexible in terms of the type of job they take, this does not mean they should waste their time applying for positions they have no chances of being hired. The fact is, experienced hospitality professionals have even more cause for selectivity. Submitting resumes for positions that do not match your qualifications or in which you have little interest, will do nothing to help you further your career. Spend your time searching and applying for roles that are a good fit, instead.
4. You don’t need a cover letter to get a job in hospitality.
Whether you submit a resume or a completed job application, you’re basically providing an employer with a list outlining your experience—and very little else. The fact is, personality is as important in the hospitality industry as your professional qualifications, and a cover letter is your opportunity to shine a spotlight on your charisma, charm, enthusiasm, and communication skills. You don’t have to send a resume by snail mail to include one either. If you’re submitting an application or sending a digital resume via email, use the body of the email as your cover letter.
Myths are entertaining at best and stifling at worst—they can even keep you from landing your dream position. Fortunately, you now know the truth about some of the worst. Use this knowledge as you conduct your job search and you’ll be scheduling interviews sooner than you think.
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About the Author
Angela Rose researches and writes about job search strategy, career management, hiring trends, and workplace issues for Hcareers.com.
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