Eight Sought-After Hospitality Service Attitudes

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In doing my research for this article, I came across a job posting for a banquet server at a luxury hotel-resort in Savannah. It had the typical job requirements for banquet service –

Obtains linen, silver, glassware, and china to set tables.

Arranges settings on tables.

Serves courses from kitchen and service bars.

Garnishes and decorates dishes preparatory to serving.

Maintains assigned station, including table pieces, side stands, and chairs.

Observes diners to respond to any additional requests and to determine when meal has been completed.

Answers questions regarding food preparation.

Someone with three months of experience and a willingness to learn would have a good chance of meeting those requirements. However, following the list of duties were seven additional hospitality service attitudes and traits that employees were expected to demonstrate on the job. These were listed as, I suppose, a “heads up” for applicants. More companies are putting behavioral expectations on their job postings or as a general message on their website employment pages to let applicants know the company’s culture and values. It helps applicants “opt out” before they and the company enter into the long recruiting process.

1. Customer Service – they are up front with the fact that banquet servers will have to handle difficult and emotional customer situations. Handle customer requests and keep commitments.

2. Teamwork – banquet servers are expected to remain objective and open to other ideas and to accept feedback. They are expected to put the team above their own interests and promote a cohesive working environment.

3. Diversity – respect for differences in background, promote diversity and educate others on the values of a diverse workforce.

4. Ethics – the old values of honesty, integrity, truthfulness. Responsibility and again, keeping commitments.

5. Quality/Accuracy – Demonstrate accuracy and thoroughness; monitor his/her own work for quality and apply feedback to improve performance.

6. Quantity – meet requirements and work quickly.

7. Safety and Security – follow safety and security policies to ensure safe work environment for themselves and the team. Report potential safety hazards.

8. Attendance/Punctuality – Consistently arrive to work on time and complete his/her shift. Respond to requests promptly. Arrive at meetings and appointments on time.

You may think this long list would discourage some highly skilled people from applying. Well, you’re right. Though it is not the main purpose, it is one of the reasons for the list. You can train individuals on the first list of duties. But you can’t train people to be punctual, accurate or honest. Those are traits that are inherent. They are part of a person’s character. In my experience as an HR Director, we had more success with individuals that met the second list than just the first. No matter what the level, these eight attitudes will make you successful in whatever you do.

Mary Nestor-Harper, SPHR, is a consultant, blogger, motivational speaker and freelance writer for Hospitalityjobsite.com. Based in Savannah, GA, her work has appeared in Training magazine, Training & Development magazine, Supervision, BiS Magazine and The Savannah Morning News. When she’s not writing, she enjoys singing Alto II with the Savannah Philharmonic Chorus and helping clients discover what they love and spend their life on it. You can read more of her blogs at hospitalityjobsiteblog.com and view additional job postings on Nexxt.


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