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Guide to career paths in hospitality
Guide to career paths in hospitality

Guide to career paths in hospitality

The hospitality industry is vast, exciting, and expanding in many directions. It’s one of the world’s fastest-growing sectors for employment. It offers diverse career paths, from luxury hospitality, event planning, and hotel management to tourism and roles in food and beverage.

With so many options, choosing the right path can be overwhelming, especially when considering the different education and training requirements, job outlook, salary expectations, and opportunities for career progression.

In this guide, we’ll take you through the different career paths in hospitality.

Introducing: careers opportunities in the hospitality industry

The hospitality industry comprises businesses providing services such as food and beverage offerings, accommodation, entertainment, tourism, and venue management.
As an industry with global reach, hospitality generates significant income and employment opportunities and plays a crucial role in supporting the world economy.

Why work in hospitality? Hospitality is an exciting industry that provides many opportunities for personal and professional growth and the chance to travel and work in different areas of the world.

Starting your career in hospitality management can help develop valuable leadership, communication, problem-solving, and customer service skills.

Is hospitality a good career? Hospitality is a great career for anyone with a strong work ethic and a passion for creating positive experiences for others. It’s a dynamic industry that’s rapidly growing, with all kinds of career opportunities.

From entry-level roles for school leavers to executive management positions for experienced professionals or hospitality entrepreneurship, there are many rewarding options.

Types of career paths in hospitality management

There are many career paths in hospitality, ranging from entry level to management roles, and each comes with unique responsibilities and requirements.

Hospitality career path: Management roles

This hospitality career path involves supervising the day-to-day running of restaurants, hotels, and resorts. Most hospitality management positions typically require a Bachelor of hospitality management and several years of experience in a relevant area.

Hotel manager

Responsible for all aspects of operations, hotel managers ensure the efficient running of the hotel while focusing on providing an excellent guest experience. This includes everything from organizing employees to guest relations and services, marketing, and financial management.

They typically have to oversee multiple departments within the hotel, such as the front desk, food and beverage services, and housekeeping.

Resort manager

In charge of holiday resorts and larger venues, resort managers typically supervise multiple departments, such as accommodations, recreational facilities, dining establishments, and entertainment venues, to guarantee seamless coordination and optimal service delivery. Additionally, they often collaborate with other departments, such as sales and marketing, to promote the resort and attract guests. They are vital for upholding the resort’s reputation, fostering positive guest relations, and driving its overall success in the hospitality industry.

At Glion you will be able to get first-hand experience at luxury resorts. Here’s a small snapshot of a day in the life of one of our BA students in Bora-Bora.


@glion.eduMeet Charlotte Vrignaud, our Bachelor Semester 3 student, as she takes us through her duties as a Concierge Intern at the beautiful property of Four Seasons Bora Bora! 🌴🌊 Internships Testimonial Alumni BBA Glion HigherEducation Experience GlionSpirit BoraBora FrenchPolynesia Hospitality Hotel Industry Work Intern

♬ original sound – Glion Hospitality & Business – Glion Hospitality & Business

Food and beverage manager

Working in a cage, bar, restaurant or banquet facility, food and beverage management involves overseeing all aspects of a hospitality business’s dining and drinking services.

While many food and beverage managers have a background in the culinary arts, they are typically responsible for menu planning, ordering, inventory management, staff training, and quality control.

Event manager

For people who love big events, working in event management can be ideal. This involves organizing conferences, corporate meetings, festivals, weddings, and other gatherings. They’ll work closely with clients to determine their needs and oversee all elements of planning, from budgeting and scheduling to venue selection and vendor management.

They work alongside coordinators, technicians, and decorators to ensure the event goes smoothly.

General manager

Overseeing every department, a general manager oversees all aspects of a hospitality business. They’ll work with the heads of departments, such as event managers, food and beverage managers, and sales and marketing managers, to ensure smooth operations.

Operational roles

Operational roles within the hospitality industry focus on running the day-to-day functions of a hospitality business such as a bar, restaurant, or spa. These roles typically include housekeepers, bartenders, kitchen staff, chefs, servers, and front desk staff.
They are responsible for maintaining the cleanliness and standards of the business and providing excellent customer service.

Housekeeping supervisor

As the name implies, housekeeping supervisors manage housekeeping staff and ensure all areas are cleaned and well-maintained. Their role involves training staff, maintaining an inventory of supplies, and ensuring work is carried out to a good standard.
Housekeeping supervisors typically liaise with maintenance and the front desk to identify issues that need attention and ensure all guests’ needs are satisfied.

Front desk receptionist

The front desk is the first point of contact for most guests, making the role of front desk receptionist very important. Front office management is responsible for greeting guests, checking them in and out, taking phone calls, making reservations, assigning guests to rooms, and maintaining accurate records.
This role is key in ensuring guests have a positive experience.

Hospitality career path: Support roles

This kind of hospitality career path in about ensuring the smooth running of the business but may not involve interacting with guests. These roles typically include positions within sales and marketing, human resources, and finance, and are responsible for promoting the business to potential customers, hiring and training staff, and managing budgets.

Sales and marketing

Working in marketing or sales within hospitality involves promoting and generating revenue for the business. As a marketing manager, you’ll create marketing and advertising strategies and conduct market research to identify growth opportunities.
Sales and marketing professionals also build relationships with potential customers and partners, negotiate contracts, and manage budgets.

Human resources

As a human resources (HR) manager, you manage all staff-related matters such as recruitment, onboarding, training, and benefits. The role ensures that the business complies with current regulations and that staff relations issues, such as disputes and grievances, are dealt with correctly and lawfully.
HR professionals and managers develop policies supporting business goals and promoting a positive working environment.

Accounting and finance

Also known as a revenue manager, this role is typically responsible for managing the financial areas of the business. They’ll maintain financial records and budgets and prepare reports for management.
They’ll also analyze financial data to spot trends and opportunities for revenue growth.

Education and training requirements for a hospitality career?

It’s vital to make sure you have the right skills and qualifications for your career aspirations. The education and training requirements will depend on the level of responsibility, and most management positions require hospitality degrees.

There are also certification programs in areas such as revenue management, hotel operations, and food and beverage management which can enhance job prospects.
As one of the world’s leading hospitality schools, Glion offers hospitality degrees that will equip you with real-world experience in the industry and the opportunity to specialize in a chosen field, such as luxury management or event planning.

Our Masters degree in hospitality management includes real-world experience that helps you develop skills to manage business, operations, and staff.
Training programs and internships also offer valuable hands-on, practical experience, enabling students to learn specific skills and build professional networks.
The American Hotel and Lodging Association, the International Association of Hospitality Accountants, and the National Restaurant Association are hospitality industry associations and organizations that offer additional resources, education, and professional development opportunities.

What qualifications do I need for a hospitality management career?

A high school diploma or equivalent may be sufficient if you want to work in an entry-level position, such as a housekeeper, server, or bartender.

You’ll require a bachelor’s degree in hospitality for higher-level roles such as managers or executives. Hospitality internships and on-the-job training also provide valuable experience and an opportunity to develop skills.

How do I get started in a career in hospitality?

Your first step on a hospitality career path would be to research hospitality careers and the qualifications required for each role. This will enable you to decide which roles best suit your interests and whether you need a degree in hospitality.

Studying at a hospitality school in Switzerland with state-of-the-art facilities, such as Glion, will provide you with knowledge and skills in an international setting.
Switzerland has a long history of delivering excellence in hospitality, while Glion has over 50 years of providing world-class hospitality education.

What skills are needed for a career in hospitality?

Whether you’re managing a hotel, overseeing a restaurant, coordinating events, or engaging in tourism activities, possessing a robust skill set is essential for delivering exceptional service and crafting memorable experiences for guests. Here’s a look at some of the skills you need for hospitality career pathways:

Customer service: Providing top-notch customer service lies at the heart of hospitality. This entails understanding guests’ needs, anticipating their preferences, and ensuring they have a delightful experience from start to finish.

Communication: This key for engaging with guests, collaborating with colleagues, and conveying information clearly and professionally. Whether it’s welcoming guests with warmth or resolving issues promptly, strong communication skills are indispensable.

Problem-solving: Hospitality professionals encounter unexpected challenges regularly. The ability to think critically, troubleshoot issues efficiently, and find innovative solutions is crucial for maintaining guest satisfaction and operational efficiency.

Attention to detail: From immaculately arranged rooms to flawlessly set tables, meticulous attention to detail elevates the guest experience. Ensuring every aspect of service is executed flawlessly enhances guest satisfaction and fosters loyalty.

Multitasking: Hospitality roles often entail juggling multiple tasks simultaneously. Effective multitasking involves prioritizing responsibilities, managing time efficiently, and maintaining composure in high-pressure situations.

Leadership: This is essential for guiding teams, inspiring colleagues, and fostering a positive work environment. Strong leadership entails setting a clear vision, delegating tasks effectively, and empowering team members to excel in their roles.

Time management: Efficient time management is critical for meeting deadlines, maximizing productivity, and delivering exceptional service. Prioritizing tasks, setting realistic goals, and minimizing distractions contribute to effective time management.

Flexibility: The hospitality industry operates around the clock, and schedules can vary widely. Flexibility is essential for adapting to changing circumstances, accommodating guest needs, and ensuring smooth operations during peak periods.

Teamwork: Collaboration is fundamental in hospitality, as many tasks require coordination among team members. Being a team player, communicating effectively, and supporting colleagues contribute to a harmonious work environment and superior guest experiences.

Cultural awareness: Hospitality professionals interact with guests from diverse cultural backgrounds. Cultural awareness involves understanding and respecting different customs, traditions, and preferences to provide inclusive and culturally sensitive service.

Aim for the highest roles in hospitality

If you want to into the exciting world of hospitality management, our bachelor’s degree gives you a great head start

Bachelor’s of hospitality management

Salary expectations and job outlook

Here are the average annual salary ranges and job outlooks for popular hospitality career paths in the US.

Hotel manager

Salary range: Between$92,908 and $136,422
Job outlook: Positive

Food and beverage manager

Salary range: Between $65,560 and $92,162
Job outlook: Positive

Event manager

Salary range: Between $93,769 and $119,933
Job outlook: Positive

Front desk receptionist

Can earn up to $84,784 in some luxury hotels
Job outlook: Positive

Housekeeping supervisor

Salary range: Between $42,040 and $55,040
Job outlook: Positive

Sales and marketing manager

Salary range: Between $92,904 to $136,058
Job outlook: Positive

Human resources manager

Salary range: Between $102,285 and $129,959
Job outlook: Positive

Revenue manager

Salary range: Between $74,421 and $100,318
Job outlook: Positive

Advancement and career development in your hospitality career

The hospitality industry offers a wide range of opportunities for professional development and career advancement.
Many hospitality employers offer education and training programs to advance employees’ skills and knowledge.
Hospitality professionals can often gain experience in different departments and roles to expand their skill set.
Experienced professionals may guide and mentor entry-level employees to help them progress. Connecting with industry professionals can lead to career advancement through new job opportunities.
It’s possible to progress to leadership positions, such as general manager, with strong performance and sufficient experience.

Is hospitality a good career path?

With its diverse opportunities spanning hotels, restaurants, event planning, tourism, and more, the hospitality industry offers a dynamic work environment where no two days are the same. Hospitality cultivates transferable skills such as customer service, communication, problem-solving, and teamwork, which are highly valued across various industries.

There are lots of different career opportunities in the hospitality industry, and plenty of room for professional development, allowing individuals to progress to management and executive roles. The global nature of hospitality provides opportunities to work in diverse locations around the world, while the fulfilling aspect of creating memorable experiences for guests brings satisfaction and meaning to the work. For a successful hospitality career, you’ll need a positive attitude, a passion for customer service, and a willingness to learn.

Build the foundations for a career of leadership in hospitality management.

This Bachelor degree immerses you in the skills, knowledge, and hands-on experience to make an impact in hospitality management.

Bachelor of Hospitality Management