Being a host or hostess is an exciting experience. While you get to meet and greet several people during the day, it is supposed to be a hectic job as well. However, the best thing about being a host or hostess is that it does not require formal education or training for you to become one of the best out there. With time, you will develop skills by following your seniors and consider some important factors along the way as well to become a professional in no time.
Therefore, if you are someone who is planning to become a host or hostess, you need to give this article a read. We are going to discuss what needs to be mentioned on your resume and several other important skills and qualities you should develop over time through sheer hard work and persistence. Let’s begin.
Top Host or Hostess Qualities
Possessing a friendly personality is the most important part of being a host or hostess. It is your prime responsibility to greet every customer with a smile. A host tends to be the center of attention. If the customers happen to be confused or run into problems, questioning the host is going to be their first option. Therefore, a friendly personality is above all the other qualities. Moreover, as a host or hostess, you should make the customers feel important and comfortable at the same time.
Confidence is the solution to many problems. Unfortunately, you will come across many people who have spent their entire lives hosting people but failed at gathering confidence each time. This is bad news if you are expected to host multiple events in a year with many important personalities visiting. For instance, if you are a host or hostess in a restaurant, your confidence should speak for itself. Rather than making yourself appear unsure, you should speak with conviction and assure customers using your experience. Furthermore, confidence is directly proportional to the trust level as well. The more confident you are, the higher the trust level of customers.
Being sharp is not about dressing well or being diplomatic with customers, instead, it is about being aware of what is going on in your surroundings. For instance, if you are a host or hostess in a restaurant that includes three floors, you should be aware of what is going on, on each one. At the same time, you will face complicated and stressful situations as well, which will require sharp thinking and responses to diffuse the situation as quickly as possible. You need to remember that your customer is the restaurant’s top priority. Messing up their experience is going to hurt your customer base big time.
Being personable is another important aspect of being a host or hostess. As a host or hostess, you are expected to possess a personality that is both charming and attractive. However, that is just the tip of the iceberg. You have to be something beyond that, which makes the customers visit your restaurant again. The way you talk, walk, and carry yourself says a lot about your personality. Therefore, everything needs to be a perfect balance. You cannot expect yourself to be polite while being rude with your actions or boosting your ego in sharp suits. As much as you thought people love it, they will actually hate you for it.
Although being well-spoken is an obvious host or hostess quality but most often people who plan on pursuing their career as host or hostess tend to overlook this fact. Mumbling, cursing, and speed talk is considered deal-breakers. An ideal host should be polite and knowledgeable. Even there are some embarrassing situations, the host should hold his/her ground. While hiring host or hostesses, businesses like restaurants make sure that the candidate is composed and talks in an eloquent manner. Even though this is a rare quality found in host or hostesses but that does not mean that you cannot develop it as well. Practice talking on the phone if you are serious about being described as “Well-spoken”.
Things Every Host and Hostess Should Know
While we have discussed some of the top and most important host or hostess qualities, it is now time to shift the discussion towards things every host and hostess should know.
Welcome customers before they arrive
When it comes to welcoming customers even before they arrive, the host vs hostess debate utilizes the same principles. As a host or hostess, when you call the customers to confirm reservations, dig into as much information as possible. Ask your customers whether they are arriving to celebrate a special occasion. Furthermore, ask them whether they would like to request something privately. Then as the customers arrive, be there on the front to welcome them.
Keep the customers updated
Keeping the customers updated is one of the most important things every host and hostess should know. As a host or hostess, you should constantly communicate with the customers and inform them about any evening’s special and most importantly the current waiting time.
Keep track of the preferences
Keeping track of customer preferences is for sure going to earn you some loyal customers. While there are some customers who would like to try something new each time, there are others as well that stick to the same meals. Therefore, you should track every customer’s preferences so that you can suggest to them something similar or even better. A customer would not like to wait an hour before he/she is told that their favorite dish is not available. In such situations, the tracking of the preferences is going to enable you to come up with alternatives suited for the customer’s taste buds.
Be friendly yet professional
A host or hostess needs to be friendly yet professional. While talking to the customers make sure that you look them in their eyes and smile. However, make sure that you do not overdo it as the customers can become uncomfortable. Make them feel as if you have been waiting for them all night. When it is time to head out, thank your customers and request them to visit again. If something happens to go wrong in between, do not panic. Instead, apologize and own your mistake as it will leave a long-lasting impression.
By looking at the top qualities and things every host or hostess should know, it might seem as if hosting is a tough job. However, in reality, it isn’t. As mentioned earlier, you get to meet and greet different people but you need to develop and showcase skills along the way. A perfect combination of skills and knowledge is what you should be in pursuit of. Once you have achieved that, there is no one stopping you from becoming the best host or hostess out there.