Hospitality Industry: Skills, Competition & Turnover

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  • 0:00 Hospitality Industry…
  • 0:51 Skills for the…
  • 2:05 Competition
  • 2:56 Challenges of Turnover
  • 3:37 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Savannah Samoszuk

Savannah has over eight years of hotel management experience and has a master's degree in leadership.

The hospitality industry employs a large part of the workforce, including workers at restaurants, hotels, and airports. This lesson will take a look at the specific skills needed in this service industry, the competition within the industry, and the challenges of turnover.

Hospitality Industry Employment

The hospitality industry, also known as the service industry, covers a broad range of fields, but there are commonalities in hiring and employment across the board. Because the industry is customer focused and service focused, it has its own unique hiring situations. For instance, the recruitment in the hospitality industry is always fast paced. Everyone is looking for the best employees who will provide exceptional service to customers. Many employees work face-to-face with customers on a daily basis, so they need to have outstanding personalities and the ability to deal with people.

Another challenge the hospitality industry faces is the seasonality of business. Hiring the right amount of workers for busy times and providing consistent work during slow periods can be difficult. We will take a look at these challenges, as well as skills employees need, competitiveness in hiring, and challenges of turnover.

Skills for the Hospitality Industry

As we have discussed, the hospitality industry is unique in that it has a high level of customer contact and many varied roles. Each position requires certain job-related skills, but the industry as a whole has skills that are needed regardless of the position.

First, personality is a must in the industry. This industry, as a service industry, needs people who are friendly and ready to provide great service. Most hospitality businesses want all of their employees to possess enthusiastic personalities, whether the employees deal with customers on a daily basis or not.

Next, a skill that is needed is flexibility. Jobs in the hospitality industry are not nine to five. Hotels are open round the clock, restaurants stay open late and are open every day of the week, and airlines have flights taking off all the time. To accommodate these schedules, it is essential that these employees are flexible and willing to work nights, weekends, and holidays.

Lastly, a common skill needed in the hospitality industry is the ability to multitask. Most positions in the industry require handling many things at once in a fast-paced environment. For instance, servers have to be able to serve many tables at once, front desk clerks have to be able to check people in and answer phones, and flight attendants have to be able to watch out for the safety of everyone on the plane at all times.


After looking at some of the skills needed in the hospitality industry, you can imagine it would be hard to find employees to fill these positions, and there is heavy competition when it comes to hiring. Hotels, cruise lines, airlines, and restaurants try to get the best talent right out of college. They go to colleges and universities that have hospitality programs and recruit. These businesses also offer competitive internships, including summer programs at properties in exotic locations. The businesses might offer to pay for travel and lodging to secure the top talent, adding the promise of a full-time job once they complete the internship or graduate.

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