Timing is everything: How long should you stay in your current job?
Almost everyone wants to get ahead. But how do you go about moving up the ladder? Should you stay in your current position for a certain period of time? Should you be looking for opportunities in other companies? What do you have to do to position yourself for a promotion?
First of all, before you even take a job, ask questions about what the company values. Where did some of the more senior people come from? Did they start in an hourly position and work their way up? Does the hotel seem to hire mostly from outside for particular positions?
Knowing how the company has hired senior people in the past will help you understand the opportunities that may be available to you. If there is a precedent for hiring the more senior positions from outside the company, moving up in your current position may have nothing to do with your ability and everything to do with tradition.
Secondly, be sure you position yourself as someone who wants to grow with the company. It never hurts to let management know your goals. In the past, employees were expected to “pay their dues” and work for a number of years to gain experience.
Today, most companies are all about performance, ambition and a desire to do what it takes to get the job done. When you let your manager know about your ambitions and ask what you need to be doing to get promoted, you can also be sure you’re working on tasks that the company values. Don’t waste time doing all kinds of busy-work, only to find out that most of it doesn’t matter.
In terms of “how long should stay in your current position?” the answer is more about how quickly can you demonstrate the skills and aptitude you need for the next promotion. Be willing to do whatever needs to be done… in other words, no job is beneath you. Step in and help wherever the need is and be willing to work in other departments when the opportunity arises. It’ll give you a better understanding of the overall hotel operations and make you that much more marketable.
Job hopping isn’t always the answer, either. Take the time to map out a plan and take advantage of opportunities in your current company when they crop up right in front of you. Invest in yourself and keep learning so that you’re prepared when a higher level position opens up. Treat everyone with respect and communicate clearly when it’s your turn to lead. When your team members understand exactly what needs to be done, everyone is better able to work together toward that goal.
The hospitality industry is expanding and there are always opportunities for growth. Many employees are eligible for promotion after only one year and many of those holding senior positions began their employment in hourly, entry-level hotel jobs. Larger hotels also pride themselves in offering training and resources to help those who want to move up the ladder quickly.
According to recent report conducted by WageWatch, salaried employees stayed with their companies for an average of five years or more and 75% of respondents reported that hourly employees stayed for more than five years on average. The report highlights the success stories of hotel employees and the significant opportunities for upward mobility and promotions that sets it apart from other business sectors.
- Keep your eyes open for opportunities in your own company
- Let your manager know you’re interested in doing what it takes to move up the ladder
- Invest in your skills with additional training
- Be the kind of leader who respects everyone, takes the time to pitch in wherever you’re needed and understand your company’s culture and traditions