By Noah Parks
When I was first beginning to bartend in New York City, my mom asked me, “Is the hospitality industry the right option for a career?” To which I emphatically answered, “Yes!” The hospitality field is a growing one that reaches beyond borders, beyond cultures, and identities. It’s beyond class and creed as well. Hospitality is universal and therefore is the perfect career for anyone passionate about serving others. Not to mention, it is a growing industry with increasingly great entry pay, benefits, and pension. HMG+ is the hospitality staffing solution for New York City and has been creating pathways to successful careers for over 30 years. Our mission is to bring individuals that ardently pursue hospitality together, creating a community of service and support. This is where we help prepare ourselves for a career that is founded on human connections. The career of hospitality is one that relies on relationships that last the test of time. HMG+ is committed to developing the soft skills that are a prerequisite for any field but especially in ours.
In the 10 plus years that I’ve been a bartender, I’ve prepared for anything that was asked of me. I never saw a large crowd coming into the event or rushing to the bar and felt like I didn’t have what it took to manage the situation. I always had a team around me that was working toward the same goal of providing excellent service. While the circumstances sometimes appear high volume or high energy, there was never a moment that I thought I wouldn’t be able to get everyone what they needed. I often took note of special requests and filtered them through to the maitre’d or the captain for the event. Without the guest ever asking me directly a ramekin of blue cheese stuffed olives would appear from a runner or a guest would be led to the proper conference room without having to ask for directions. It’s these “hospitality reflexes” that people sometimes call “communication skills” on resumes that keep offices, events, and life running smoothly.
As a member of the corporate team, there’s always a need to keep those skills sharp and improve your ability to be creative. When the team runs something by groups in the office it’s not just to show off their hard work; it also is an opportunity to join a collaboration. Collaborating with more senior members of any team means you get to learn how the sausage is made and bring those insights to your own work. Working with Stephen, Richard, and Mike taught me invaluable team dynamics and leadership skills that I use every day. These are not in a book or a guide on how to be successful but rather life experiences that accrue from time spent on the job. An eye for detail is valuable when you’re looking for details, however, seeing the big picture is invaluable. Working with a variety of teams and personalities helps you develop your management skills both for yourself and others. Doing this in the office, online, or during an event is just one of the transferable skills that are developed by HMG+ as a hospitality staffing solution.
Whether I’m answering my mom, a friend, or a colleague, I’ll always say that hospitality is the right choice for a career. It’s where I got my start so I’m a little biased, however there’s enthusiasm around this industry that doesn’t exist anywhere else in the job market. I’ve worked on projects that include bartending famous weddings, serving elite business owners at their estates, writing this blog, producing a podcast, and developing quiz questions for exams. And that’s just in the past two years. I’ve also developed lasting relationships within HMG+ with people from all over the world. Imagine what opportunities are still coming down the pike? HMG+ is expanding and isn’t slowing down. We’re the hospitality staffing solution for New York City and soon Chicago. Make a commitment to yourself, your future, your career, and join HMG+ today.