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29th December, 2017


If you’re one of the 4.49m people in the UK who work in hospitality, would it be fair to say you’ve had enough of the Christmas period by now?! We bet you’re sick of people talking about “well-earned time off” while you’re putting in your 8th straight AFD shift in a row?

Hospitality is one of the toughest industries to work in – long hours, unsociable shifts, low pay and minimal progression. But what do you do if you want to break out of the industry? The good news is there are a lot of transferable skills you can take into a new career….


Whether you work in a customer facing role (i.e. waiting on, bar work) or behind the scenes (i.e. chef), customer service is key in any hospitality role. You’re striving to make sure every customer has a great experience from start to finish, and have to be on-hand to deal with all sorts of situations. And if you can deal with an awkward customer after they’ve had one too many at the end of your 12 hour shift, you can deal with anything!


Dealing with complaints is a hard skill to master. Working in the hospitality industry forces you to get really good at complaint handling, really quickly! You have to think on your feet to make sure each customer leaves satisfied – not always an easy task!hospitality


The ability to sell is an important part of any waiting-on or bar job – would you like a double for only £1 extra?! Sales in hospitality are often very subtle, and are heavily reliant on the workers’ customer service and relationship building skills.  Skills that transfer perfectly into the majority of sales positions!


As someone who worked in hospitality for 20+ years, I am still proud of my ability to remember an order for 20+ drinks in one go! Waiting-on/bar staff have loads of tricks to remember orders, a skill that comes in handy again and again. Although, perhaps the fact I still know my old regular customers by their drinks order (“Oh look, there’s pint of Kronenburg and a large red wine!”) should be one to forget!


There are few industries as great for genuine camaraderie between team mates as hospitality. Everyone chips in and you’ll regularly find managers mopping floors alongside the junior team members. That team-focused attitude is a great skill to have and can be used in all sorts of different situations.

If you’re working over Christmas, thank you for keeping us fed, watered, safe and healthy. January isn’t far away, when you can hopefully book in a well-earned rest! Happy New Year!

  • Want more FIVE FOR FRIDAY tips? Visit our blog page for new hints and trade secrets every week, and make sure you follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram for all the latest on new jobs, tips, news and competitions!

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