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HOSP1001: Orientation to the Hospitality Industry (Buckley): Hospitality Industry

Segments of the Hospitality Industry


  • The food and beverage sector (which is professionally known by its initials as F&B) is the largest segment of the hospitality industry.
  • The F&B industry is estimated to provide 50% of all meals eaten in the US today. It's comprised of establishments primarily engaged in preparing meals, snacks, and beverages for immediate consumption on and off the premises. 


  • Travel and tourism deals with services related to moving people from place to place. Buses, cabs, planes, ships, trains and so on are all part of the travel industry.
  • The major function of the tourism is to encourage people to travel. When people travel, either for business or leisure, they spend money on hospitality.


  • Lodging means accommodation for a period or a place to sleep for one or more nights. Fancy hotels, hostels, campgrounds, motels and other businesses that provide a place for people to sleep overnight are all in the lodging industry.
  • Lodging businesses markets to other market segments such as business travelers, leisure travelers, long-stay travelers, budget travelers, and special travelers like people working with the government, airlines, and military.


  • Recreation is any activity that people do for rest, relaxation, and enjoyment. The goal of recreation is to refresh a person's body and mind. Any business that provides activities for rest, relaxation and enjoyment, to refresh a person's body and mind is in the recreation business.
  • Entertainment businesses which provide shows such as movie or theater, attractions which are places of special interest of visits such as zoos and museums, spectator sports and participatory sports are all parts of the recreation business.


Characteristics of Hospitality Workers


"You need to have the right attitude for this industry. It is a service industry, after all, so you must to put the needs of others before your own."


"You have to love what you do. You have to live and breathe service. I used to ‘bleed’ the color of the hotel chain that I worked for. That passion will bleed out of you toward your employees, co-workers and guests."

Team Player

"There is no 'I' in team, you can’t run a hotel or restaurant alone, it takes a team of people. Being able to come together and help each other when it’s busy so that there is no impact to the service experience the guest has encountered is key to being successful."


"Ability to follow-through is connected to using your word to develop trust. If you say you are going to do something, then you need to do it. Find a way to be organized so that you remember what you volunteered to do. Stay on top of, or ahead of deadlines, so that when something happens to derail you, you won’t fall off the track, rather it’s just a small halt in the path."


"Life can be crazy as can this industry. I love the fact that not one day is the same as the next. However, this does require that you be flexible and adjust your schedule or ways of doing things. Looking at things from a different point of view. The ability to adapt to situations is key to success."



Superior Service

      Be a Good Listener: 

  • Take the time to identify customer needs by asking questions and concentrating on what the customer is really saying. Listen to their words, the tone of voice, body language, and most importantly, how they feel. Beware of making assumptions, thinking you intuitively know what the customer wants. 
  1. Identify and Anticipate Needs: 
  2. Customers don't buy products or services. They buy good feelings and solutions to problems. Most customer needs are emotional rather than logical. The more you know your customers, the better you become at anticipating their needs. Communicate regularly so that you are aware of problems or upcoming needs. 
  3. Make Customers Feel Important and Appreciated: 
  4. Treat them as individuals. Always use their name and find ways to compliment them, but be sincere. People value sincerity. It creates good feeling and trust. Think about ways to generate good feelings about doing business with you. Customers are very sensitive and know whether or not you really care about them. Thank them every time you get a chance. 
  1. Body Language Is Key: 
  2. Be sure that your body language conveys sincerity. Your words and actions should be congruent.
  3. Understanding Is Crucial: 
  4. Help customers understand your systems. Your organization may have the world's best systems for getting things done, but if customers don't understand them, they can get confused, impatient and angry. Take time to explain how your systems work and how they simplify transactions. Be careful that your systems don't reduce the human element of your organization.
  1. Appreciate the Power of "Yes": 
  2. Always look for ways to help your customers. When they have a request (as long as it is reasonable) tell them that you can do it. Figure out how afterward. Look for ways to make doing business with you easy. Always do what you say you are going to do.
  3. Know How to Apologize: 
  4. When something goes wrong, apologize. It's easy, and customers like it. The customer may not always be right, but the customer must always win. Deal with problems immediately and let customers know what you have done. Make it simple for customers to complain. Value their complaints. As much as we dislike it, it gives us an opportunity to improve. Even if customers are having a bad day, go out of your way to make them feel comfortable.
  1.  Give More Than Expected: 
  2. Since the future of all companies lies in keeping customers happy, think of ways to elevate yourself above the competition. Consider the following:
    1. What can you give customers that they cannot get elsewhere?
    2. What can you do to follow-up and thank people even when they don't buy?
    3. What can you give customers that is totally unexpected?
  3. Get Regular Feedback: 
  4. Encourage and welcome suggestions about how you could improve. There are several ways in which you can find out what customers think and feel about your services. Listen carefully to what they say. Check back regularly to see how things are going. Provide a method that invites constructive criticism, comments, and suggestions. 
  1. Treat Employees Well: ‚Äč
  2. Employees are your internal customers and need a regular dose of appreciation. Thank them and find ways to let them know how important they are. Treat your employees with respect and chances are they will have a higher regard for customers. Appreciation stems from the top. Treating customers and employees well is equally important.


Top Jobs within the Industry

Top 10 Jobs in the Hospitality Industry

  • Bellhops
  • Concierges
  • Executive chefs
  • Gaming dealers
  • Hotel clerks
  • Hotel general managers
  • Maids and housekeeping cleaners
  • Maitre d’
  • Meeting and convention center planners
  • Reservation ticket agents