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What Are the Key Skills Needed to Be a Host/Hostess?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for hosts and hostess is expected to increase 12 percent from 2012 to 2022, which is an average rate of growth. This means opportunities to work at restaurants greeting guests and making sure things run smoothly should be available. However, even though there are employment opportunities, anyone interested in working as a host or hostess must know the key skills needed to successfully complete hosting duties.
Hosting duties require plenty of communication, whether a host or hostess is talking with co-workers, employers or guests. You must know how to effectively express ideas, maintain discussions and provide directions. This means you must know how to speak clearly so guests and co-workers can understand and provide answers to convey concise information. For example, when a guest asks about a menu, the host or hostess should provide information that is clear and understandable.
Multitasking, Adapting and Organizing Skills
A hostess or host must have good multitasking skills. A major part of hosting duties involves performing more than one task at a time. For instance, a host greets guests, shows them to tables and makes sure the dining area is clean all at one time. Since hosting involves constant requests from guests and changes like a waitress not serving a table’s meals, the individual needs adapting and organizational skills. This means tasks such as guests’ requests and emergencies are placed before any nonessential tasks.
Attention to Detail
Paying attention to details can mean the difference between everything running smoothly and guests having an unsatisfactory experience. Hosting requires paying attention to details -- even the smallest details, because guests may notice them. A host or hostess must have the skill of paying attention to any dirty dining spaces and dirty menus or seats.
Hosting involves working with the public. A host or hostess must be comfortable with interacting with guests. Also, hosting requires customer-service skills. For example, the individual must know how to effectively listen to guests, whether they are complaining or happy about the service. If guests are complaining, the host or hostess must be able to listen and resolve the problem -- even if it is apologizing for something a co-worker did.
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