Hospitality industry needs wake-up call

I moved back to the UK in 2009 after finishing school in the Byron shire and was lucky enough to land a job running food for a kitchen in an arts venue.

From there I progressed to serving drinks, bar and cafe management, event supervising and finally senior event management.

When I started at the venue I couldn’t hold two plates in one hand let alone manage a 1,000-capacity, multi-venue arts complex, however with lots of grafting and a lot of faith and time invested by my superiors I was able to flourish in that environment and gain valuable life and work experience, I repaid them with five years of endless hard work and loyalty when I could have taken my knowledge and qualifications to a better paid job elsewhere.

It is these experiences and lessons I have learned about the importance of investing in people from the ground up (young people especially) that made me so appalled to see the local jobs classifieds asking for a minimum of four years experience pouring milk into coffee, three years experience mixing one type of alcohol with another, two years experience writing orders on a small note pad or the absolute worst, any experience at all washing dishes.

Whether these ludicrous hospitality requirements are born from bosses’ delusions of grandeur, laziness and lack of training skills or anything else equally as absurd I think this case of ‘experience inflation’ is getting way out of hand.

Invest in your young people and they will surely reward you with hard work, loyalty and gratitude.

C Hollingworth, Coorabell

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