Karen Lomas
October 1, 2016

Help your teenager learn the best job skills


Pexels Photo

How can you help your teenager learn the best job skills? This is a question addressed in an article in The Conversation, written by Susan Lucas. Th comparisons she uses are of internships against work in hospitality.

Hospitiality is some thing I know a fair bit about as that was my ‘first career’. In my first job behind a bar no training was provided, and there was no supervisor alongside me. So when a customer asked for a Cognac I found the Cognac, but had no idea what measure I had to use, or which glass. On top of that, it was a really busy pub and with no modern technology, I had to add up long food and drinks orders in my head. In a bar in Switzerland I was asked for a Cinar and had frankly no idea what it was. I had to try to ask, in my very poor Swiss German, where to find it!!

Training standards are far superior nowadays, in most outlets, so my anecdotes are simply meant as examples of how in hospitality you do need to learn to think on your feet, and fast.

The key things about jobs in hospitality are that you will learn to:

work collaboratively with others

respond quickly, as hospitality can be really hectic environments and customers want their food, drink, or room, straight away

react to issues efficiently and effectively, such as complaints or machinery failure

emotional intelligence – patience, negotiation, understanding, rapport, charisma

remember numerous tasks, such as cleaning, fetching essentials, clearing of tables etc

most likely to handle cash accurately.

Some of the best job skills are known as transferable skills, or “soft skills”. Employers are saying these, above, are what they want from job applicants. According to Lucas, this is why employers are keen to hire people who have worked in a bar or restaurant.

Internships can enable you to develop many, if not all of those same skills. However, there are many employers who do not structure the training as well as they might. They often leave the student simply observing activities, instead of allowing the young person to take over tasks. This can be overcome if the student, if organising the internship on their own, or the tertiary based Careers Practitioner, ensures that the student asks plenty of good questions in their interview, such as:

what activities can I be involved in

will a supervisor teach me a number of tasks that I can then have a go at by myself

who will I shadow and what does their work involve.

The job skills looked for in applicants are often found in those young teenagers who have worked in cafes and restaurants. Those skills I’ve listed will look good on your resume and give you an advantage over other applicants. If you can get an internship as well, so long as it’s well organised, you will be very employable.

To help your teenager to learn the best job skills, look at the details on my website, at my Facebook post or even the inspirational photos and quotes on Instagram. You can also reach me by phone on 0419 390 994, for an obligation free chat.

Help your young one stand out!




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