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Ready for your first job? Start climbing the ladder: Two tales beyond hospitality and tourism

Posted by Felicity Thomlinson on May 17, 2024 11:13:50 AM
Felicity Thomlinson

Are you between 15 and 19 and thinking about jumping into the workforce for the first time? Feeling a bit unsure about where to start? Look no further than the exciting, fast-paced world of hospitality and tourism! Join us as we explore how you can start climbing the hospitality and tourism ladder.

start climbing the hospitality ladder


The hospitality and tourism industry is a great sector for getting your foot in the door, learning some versatile skills, and earning money while you're still in school or starting college. Plus, with a few quick skills up your sleeve, you can find opportunities to work almost anywhere, from the café down the street to a swanky hotel overseas. 

Why choose hospitality or tourism for your first job? 

Hospitality and tourism roles are all about providing great experiences—whether it's serving up a latte, checking guests into a hotel, or guiding tourists through a local attraction. This industry is perfect for young people because it values enthusiasm and energy and often offers flexible scheduling around your school or college commitments. Plus, it's a fun way to meet new people and gain confidence! The skills you can learn on Typsy and in your hospitality and tourism roles include skills that are useful in any role throughout any future career pathway. From customer service skills, team building, cost management, mental health awareness & management, compliance and time management, these are all essential foundations for a successful career in any industry.



Climbing the ladder – two tales 

Here are two real examples that illustrate how foundational experiences in hospitality can provide critical skills and insights that are transferable to high levels of success in the same field or entirely different industries. 


Danny Meyer - From Restaurateur to Industry Innovator 

Starting point:

Danny Meyer began his career in tourism when he worked as a tour guide in Rome during college. His college degree was in political science which he completed at Trinity in 1980 and initially worked on John Anderson's independent presidential campaign. In hospitality & tourism, he went on to work in an Italian seafood restaurant in New York City in 1984 and then went back to study cooking in Italy and France.  At age 27, Danny Meyer opened his first restaurant, Union Square Cafe, in New York City in 1985. With a keen eye for service and a passion for food, Meyer was committed to offering an exceptional dining experience. 

Career progression:

His initial success paved the way for a series of successful restaurants, including the ground-breaking Shake Shack, which started as a hot dog cart in Madison Square Park. Meyer's philosophy of "enlightened hospitality," which prioritizes employees to enhance customer satisfaction, revolutionized the restaurant business model. 

Current status:

Danny Meyer is now the CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group, which owns multiple renowned establishments. He is a leader in the industry, known for his innovative approach to hospitality and his commitment to customer service and employee welfare. 


Typsy  hospitality micro-credentials online

** If you are located in Victoria, Australia, check out the special offer to access Typsy premium free until September 2024 here**

Whitney Wolfe Herd - From Hospitality to Technology Entrepreneur

Starting point:

Before becoming a technology entrepreneur, Whitney Wolfe Herd worked in various customer service roles, including a stint in a Parisian café. These roles honed her communication and interpersonal skills, teaching her the importance of customer experience. 

Career Progression:

Whitney took the skills she learned in hospitality and co-founded Tinder, the dating app that popularized the swiping mechanism. Later, she founded Bumble, a dating app that empowers women by allowing them only to initiate conversations, which was influenced by her desire to improve the dynamics of dating and interactions, a concept not too dissimilar to enhancing customer experiences in hospitality. 

Current Status:

As of now, Whitney Wolfe Herd is the CEO of Bumble Inc., and under her leadership, Bumble has grown into a billion-dollar company. She became the youngest woman to take a company public when Bumble debuted its IPO in February 2021. In 2022, Whitney Wolfe Herd was listed at number 33 of the top 100 "America's richest self-made women," by Forbes.

More inspiring stories

Keen to watch more inspiring hospitality stories that started from humble beginnings? Watch the mentor session with Juan D. Leyva on Typsy today. 


Types of jobs in Tourism & Hospitality 

  1. Tour Guide: Love your hometown? Working as a tour guide allows you to share your passion with visitors, enhancing your public speaking skills and knowledge about your local area. Learning more about customer service is essential to excel in a tour guide role.

  2. Event Assistant: If you love organizing and being part of big moments, working as an event assistant might be right up your alley. This role involves helping to plan and execute events like weddings, conferences, and parties, providing plenty of opportunities to learn about logistics, customer service, and event management.

  3. Host/Hostess: As the first face that greets guests at a restaurant or hotel, the host or hostess plays a crucial role in setting the tone for the customer experience. This position teaches you how to manage reservations, organize seating, and provide an inviting welcome to guests.

  4. Wait Staff: Working in restaurants or cafes, you can learn about food service, teamwork, and the fast-paced environment of dining establishments.

  5. Barista: Perfect for coffee lovers, working as a barista can teach you the art of coffee making, customer service, and even cash handling. Brew the perfect coffee with Typsy's espresso courses from barista Hugh Kelly!

  6. Bartender: For those interested in mixology and the vibrant atmosphere of bars and clubs, bartending can be an exciting option. It’s not just about mixing drinks; you’ll also need to master customer interaction, handle transactions, and sometimes manage inventory. Explore all of Typsy's beverage courses.

  7. Kitchen Assistant: If you're interested in cooking, starting as a kitchen assistant can introduce you to food preparation techniques and kitchen management.

  8. Hotel Receptionist: This role is great for honing your communication skills and learning how to handle bookings, guest inquiries, and provide top-notch customer service.

  9. Housekeeping Staff: This vital role focuses on keeping environments clean and inviting. Working in housekeeping, you’ll learn about the standards of cleanliness required in hospitality settings, time management, and the intricacies of hotel operations.

  10. Concierge: Working as a concierge, especially in a hotel or luxury setting, allows you to delve into customer service deeply. You’ll be responsible for assisting guests with everything from travel arrangements and restaurant recommendations to tickets for shows or special events in the city.

  11. Driver: A driver plays an important role in the visitor experience and helping someone receive exceptional service. A driver needs to have good customer service skills and they are often the first person a guest interacts with when they arrive in the country. A driver often interacts quite closely with guests when visiting tourist attractions so a great course to start learning about interacting well with all people is a course on kindness.



  12. Marketing roles: Every hospitality and tourism business needs to be promoted. If you have a passion for marketing, this industry is a great one to be involved in. Take a look at some helpful online marketing courses on Typsy to get started.

Quick skills that make a big impact 

To stand out and quickly move up in hospitality, you’ll want to sharpen some key skills: 

  • Customer service: Being friendly and helpful is a must. Every interaction with a customer is a chance to make a positive impression.

  • Communication: Clear and effective communication is critical, whether you're explaining menu items or responding to guest questions. 

  • Teamwork: Hospitality often requires coordination with others to ensure everything runs smoothly. 

  • Problem-solving: You’ll often need to think on your feet, like finding a quick solution when a reservation goes awry or handling a customer complaint. 


Get started with online courses from experts

Want a head start? Check out Typsy, an online learning platform that offers short, practical courses designed specifically for hospitality and tourism new starters and seasoned professionals. Here are a few courses that can help you land your first job and be awesome at it: 


Why Typsy? 

  • Flexible Learning: You can access Typsy courses anytime, anywhere, which is perfect for your busy schedule. 

  • Industry Experts: Learn from professionals who know what it takes to succeed in hospitality and tourism. 

  • Skill Certificates: Each completed course earns you a certificate, boosting your resume and showing potential employers that you’re serious about your role. 

Join us online today and start learning new skills.

** If you are located in Victoria, Australia, check out the special offer to access Typsy premium free until September 2024 here**



Your first job is an exciting step towards independence and building your career path. By choosing a job in hospitality and tourism, you’re not just earning an income—you're also building a set of skills that can take you further, no matter where your career dreams eventually land you. So why wait? Start exploring the opportunities and courses today, and step into a role that promises new experiences every day. Welcome to the world of hospitality and tourism, where your journey is just beginning! 



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Topics: Hospitality career tips, Hospitality insights