How to Break into the Hospitality Industry

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If you’re looking to pursue a career in the hospitality industry, there’s good news ahead (despite the bad economy). According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the hospitality industry is expected to see double-digit increases in wage and salary employment till 2014. Wage and salary jobs in food services and drinking establishments will see similar increases to 2014.

Food services and drinking establishments continue to offer many young people their first jobs. Many of these workers are younger--16 to 19--than those entering other industries. Which means if you’re young, you can break into the field far easier than other fields.

Hotel and food service employees constitute about 8 percent of all employment nationally, with two out of five workers being part-time. So if you’re still in school, you can get into the industry without leaving your studies.

While starting at the bottom of the hospitality industry can be a turn off for some (low wages and very little responsibility), employers are continually on the lookout for workers who excel at "soft skills," a key skills set required for advancement in the hospitality field.

If you want to move up after spending time cleaning rooms and washing dishes, try to get into any of the industry-sponsored seminars; short-term, subject-specific certificate programs; or associate and bachelor's degree programs in management. You can earn a certification in hospitality management by taking an 18-month training course or a four-year specialized bachelor's degree.

For an added perspective, check out this video:

Got any job finding tips you want to share? Include your comments in the section below.

Alex A. Kecskes has written hundreds of published articles on health/fitness, "green" issues, TV/film entertainment, restaurant reviews and many other topics. As a former Andy/Belding/One Show ad agency copywriter, he also writes web content, ads, brochures, sales letters, mailers and scripts for national B2B and B2C clients. Please see more of his blogs and view additional job postings on Nexxt.

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