Hospitality professionals are a special breed. Sociability, amiability, and a perpetual drive to deliver guests a great experience are second nature to them. They are the face of a hospitality business and often remain in constant contact with customers. These professionals are the go-to people when guests’ needs must be fulfilled or when things go astray.
The best hospitality workers have an impressive interpersonal skill set that demands certain personality traits. We dug into what makes an ideal candidate and how customer-facing professionals can hone their personality skills to thrive in hospitality.
Developing Emotional Intelligence can help professionals manage stress, collaborate better in teams, and develop leadership qualities. Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is critical for hospitality because it plays a dual role.
First, a high EQ is essential for the successful delivery of customer services. To achieve this, professionals must anticipate what a customer or guest needs or wants before he or she actually communicates them.
Secondly, a high degree of EQ is required for managers in building a solid team that is motivated to give its best. In a team where everyone’s perspective and feelings are valued, there is a culture of empathy that enables professionals to feel and perform at their best. Not only does this translate to a better guest experience, but it can have a significant favorable influence on employee retention and successful hotel operations.
Depending on the role, working in hospitality can come with its fair share of challenges. It often means working long hours, multitasking, and managing guests who have high demands and expectations.
Maintaining enthusiasm and a positive attitude are crucial characteristics of professionals who sustain long-term careers in hospitality. These individuals are enthusiastic about their careers and strive to deliver the best work possible.
A positive attitude is one of the most important qualities because it overlaps with other top traits needed to succeed in this industry. Not only will these traits contribute to giving guests the best experience available, but it also helps in mitigating the stress that can come with the job.
Suppose there is one thing that is crucial in all aspects of hospitality. In that case, employees must have the ability to communicate with guests, coworkers, vendors, and other parties effectively. Effectively listening and communicating with everyone in a polite, conversational manner is a critical skill for thriving.
Great hospitality professionals are experts at knowing how to listen, not just with their ears but also with their entire body. It’s not always about what’s verbally communicated and non-verbal cues that tell the complete story. Picking up on whether a guest feels stressed, unhappy, impatient, or lost requires empathetic listening that goes beyond oral communication.
After listening comes communicating, in a clear and professional manner. In doing so, individuals must look the guests in the eye, maintain a friendly demeanor, and speak with clarity. And it’s not just about the way they talk; it’s about the employee’s general attitude.
All managerial roles in hospitality – from General Managers, Executive Housekeepers, and Operations Managers – must exhibit leadership skills. This is particularly important in cultivating resilience and saving the day amidst challenging, high-stress times during peak season.
Even for mid-level professionals, leadership skills help keep teams accountable and aligned with the common goal of providing exemplary guest service. Exhibiting leadership is a standout quality that turns team members into leaders that everyone can look up to. For professionals who seek to grow in hospitality, exercising skills as a leader is a must.
Hospitality is not an industry for everyone. But if you possess the right personality skills and qualities to thrive, you’ll quickly become an approachable and assertive professional who’s destined on a path of sustainable success in hospitality.