The hospitality industry is a thriving sector that encompasses hotels, restaurants, events, and travel services throughout the world. Hospitality business managers help establishments deliver thoughtful, memorable experiences to guests. They play a critical role in the success and growth of hospitality businesses. What they do touches every aspect of a customer’s or guest’s experience and can affect their decision whether to leave a positive review, recommend the hotel to friends, or use the service again.
At the time of writing, there are approximately 5,102 job openings for hospitality managers in the Canadian job market. On average, hospitality managers in Canada earn from $33,000 to $71,000 per year.
If you’re wondering how you can launch your own hospitality business management career and what skills and education you’ll need to succeed in this field – read on!
3 Reasons to Become a Hospitality Business Manager
What does a career in hospitality management have in store for you? Typically, this career combines creativity, problem-solving, and human interaction. It also rewards you with the chance to make a difference in people's lives, while offering a wide range of job opportunities.
And if you manage to provide guests with unforgettable and – most importantly – positive experiences, the hospitality industry will open many doors to career advancement.
Let’s consider three key reasons why you should pursue this career path:
#1. Impact on Customer Experiences
As the philosopher Albert Schweitzer once said, “The purpose of human life is to serve and to show compassion and the will to help others.”
The hospitality industry is all about serving guests and creating memorable and enjoyable experiences. By becoming a specialist in this field, you’ll have the opportunity to help guests make valuable memories. Whether you run a well-organized conference or oversee an entire cruise ship, performing your hospitality management duties to a high standard will leave a lasting impact.
#2. Knowing the Business Inside Out
By thoroughly exploring the hospitality industry as a manager, you’ll be able to acquire a well-rounded skillset and learn how to make each component of the business work together to keep your guests satisfied with your service.
Working alongside hospitality business professionals, you’ll gain knowledge and experience in front office management, hotel administration, supervision, management of food and beverage operations, housekeeping, hospitality accounting, security measurements, sales & marketing, and more.
With the diverse skill set and knowledge gained from working in the hospitality industry, your opportunities for career growth will be endless.
#3. Career Growth Opportunities
There are many opportunities to grow your career in the hospitality business management field by applying for more complex roles with greater responsibility.
To take advantage of those opportunities, in most cases, you will need to earn a college diploma in hotel management or other related disciplines, according to the Government of Canada Job Bank. With a college diploma and several years of experience, you will be well-positioned to advance from the entry-level professional roles available to new grads to more senior management positions, such as a hotel manager, event sales coordinator, or tour guide owner/operator.
Although the number of people working in the hospitality industry experienced a downward turn during COVID-19, the market has since experienced a tremendous recovery, and is expected to continue growing.
The Role of a Hospitality Business Manager
Now it’s time to figure out what you’ll do working as a hospitality business manager and what skills and qualities will help you efficiently handle your responsibilities.
The core responsibilities of a hospitality business manager can vary depending on their specific role and area of expertise within the industry. To give you an idea, let's focus on six areas that a hospitality manager is usually responsible for:
- Customer service: As a hospitality manager, you’ll be responsible for ensuring that guests receive excellent service and have a positive experience. This may involve training employees in customer service skills, developing customer service protocols, and monitoring guest feedback to identify areas for improvement.
- Operations: You'll need to oversee the day-to-day operations of a hospitality business. This may involve managing staff, monitoring equipment and facilities to be timely and properly maintained, and tracking inventory levels.
- Compliance with regulations and standards: One of your primary tasks as a hospitality business manager is to make all business operations compliant with industry-related regulations and standards. For example, you will need to oversee that food is properly stored and prepared, accommodations are clean and safe, and staff are treated fairly.
- Finances: Working as a hospitality business manager, you may create budgets for operations, staffing, food and beverage, and sales and marketing. Additionally, you’ll be responsible for managing cash flow and forecasting revenue and expenses.
- Business strategies: As a hospitality professional overseeing various areas of hotel or restaurant operations, you will contribute to the development of effective business strategies. This means you'll assist in creating a clear roadmap for how to allocate resources, make decisions, and take actions to drive the business forward and ensure its long-term success.
- Marketing: Your versatile experience in hospitality business operations can be quite helpful in creating effective marketing campaigns to attract new customers. For this, you may be required to collaborate with other departments or contractors and utilize social media to help your hotel or restaurant effectively expand its customer base.
Key Skills and Qualities
As you can see, hospitality business managers have a wide range of responsibilities. To handle all of them well, hospitality business managers require a unique blend of skills:
- Customer service skills. Since exceptional customer service is the cornerstone of any hospitality business, having excellent customer service skills is imperative for a hospitality pro. You’ll need to anticipate guests' needs and exceed their expectations, answer questions and resolve issues, and provide a positive experience that will inspire glowing reviews.
- Communication and interpersonal skills. In the hospitality industry, you’ll interact with people from all walks of life. To build trusting relationships with superiors, guests, and colleagues, it's vital to have excellent communication and interpersonal skills. Listening attentively and expressing yourself clearly are crucial aspects of communication in this field.
- Problem-solving and critical thinking. Unexpected challenges are a part of the hospitality industry. As a business manager, you’ll need to think on your feet and apply creative solutions to problems that may arise. Critical thinking skills enable you to analyze situations and make informed decisions quickly and effectively.
- Adaptability and flexibility. The hospitality business work environment is dynamic and fast-paced. To successfully work as a hospitality business manager, you should be adaptable and flexible, ready to embrace change, and stay ahead of industry trends.
- Leadership and management skills. Guiding your team and ensuring hospitality business operations run like clockwork will require solid leadership and management skills. To perform your hospitality manager role well, you should know how to motivate and advise staff, delegate tasks, and maintain a positive work environment.
- Tech-savviness. Many hospitality businesses rely on technology for tasks like reservations, payments, and customer communication. To perform these functions well, you will need to master point-of-sale (POS), property management (PMS), customer relationship management (CRM), revenue management, and other hospitality software systems.
Educational Pathways to Becoming a Hospitality Business Manager
The good news is: You do not need to spend four years getting a bachelor’s degree before launching a career in hospitality. You can fast-track your career in hospitality management with a specialized diploma that also prepares you for hospitality certifications that are recognized worldwide!
Let’s review what you should look for in a career college, to jumpstart your career as a hospitality business manager:
#1. Industry-specific training
Look for a diploma career college program taught by instructors who are experienced in the hospitality industry, and with a curriculum that teaches practical skills and knowledge needed for a successful hospitality career. Industry-specific diploma programs are typically a year or less in length and focus on preparing graduates to successfully enter the workforce. Many diploma programs also offer Career Services to help their students with their job preparation and search.
#2. Hospitality Certifications
Hospitality certifications are specialized credentials that validate an individual's knowledge and expertise in certain areas of hospitality management: sales and marketing, security, accounting, human resources, etc. They are typically granted by professional associations like the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI). Additionally, some colleges – including Sundance – give students the opportunity to earn AHLEI certifications while completing their diploma education!
#3. Practicum Placements
Often included within a diploma program, practicum placements are one of the most effective ways to gain hands-on training in hospitality. During practicum placements, you may work in various departments such as front office management, management of food and beverage operations, housekeeping operations, and human resource management. You will work alongside industry professionals and learn from their expertise.
Additionally, practicum placements provide an excellent opportunity to demonstrate your skills, work ethic, and potential as a future hospitality professional to a potential employer.
Potential Hospitality Management Employers
Picture this: You’ve graduated from a career college with a Hospitality Business Management Diploma. What’s your next step? Submitting your resume to potential employers.
Here are some hospitality sectors offering exciting opportunities for employment:
- Hotels and resorts
- Cruise lines
- Event planning and management companies
- Theme parks and attractions
- Convention centers and meeting facilities
- Casino and gaming establishments
- Catering companies and banquet facilities
- Golf courses and country clubs
- Sports and entertainment venues
- Travel agencies and tour operators
- Hospitality consulting firms
- Government tourism departments and organizations
- Non-profit organizations related to the hospitality industry
- Education and training institutions, such as colleges and universities, offering hospitality programs
These are just some examples of potential employers for starting your hospitality business management career. The industry is broad and diverse, and there are many other opportunities available depending on your own interests and career goals.
Career Advancement Opportunities
As you gradually accumulate experience, you have every chance to advance to higher-level management positions or even become an entrepreneur, opening your own establishment. Continued education and professional development can also help you in your career progression, allowing you to specialize in specific areas, such as revenue management or food and beverage operations.
Managerial and executive roles within the hospitality industry include:
- General Manager: Oversees all aspects of a hospitality business, including staff management, budgeting, and operations.
- Director of Food and Beverage: Charged for overseeing the entire spectrum of food and beverage operations, including planning menus, controlling inventories, and making sure that the processes are efficiently run and profitable as well.
- Director of Sales and Marketing: Responsible for developing and implementing marketing strategies to promote the hospitality business.
- Event Coordinator/Manager: Plans, organizes, and executes various events such as weddings, conferences, and corporate functions.
- Tourism Manager: Promotes and manages tourism-related businesses, attractions, and destinations.
- Travel Agency Manager: Oversees the operations of travel agencies, ensuring clients receive exceptional service.
- And many more!
The hospitality industry is known for promoting skilled workers quickly through the ranks to supervisor and manager roles.
What Sundance College Can Offer
Sundance College is here to help you gain the skills and experience to build a successful career in this thriving sector! Our Hospitality Business Management Diploma Program prepares students to excel in hospitality business management positions all around the world. Taught by instructors with extensive experience in the field, 100% of our hospitality graduates have found a job in the industry within 6 months of completing their program.
In addition, the Hospitality Business Management Diploma Program will provide you with the opportunity to become certified in several hospitality disciplines while you study, such as:
- Managing Hospitality Human Resources
- Hotel and Restaurant Managerial Accounting
- Security and Loss Prevention Management
- Hospitality Sales and Marketing
- Rooms Division and Managing Housekeeping Operations
To learn more about earning a Diploma at Sundance College, fill out our contact form to speak with an advisor about the program, enrollment, and learning process.