Careers in Hospitality Industry


After the economic slump of 2008, many industries were hit hard, causing them to rethink how they do business. The hospitality industry was also forced to reimagine what it would offer to its customers, as they turned to attractions, restaurants, and shopping centers to support them through this slump. Families started looking for “staycations” when looking to get away. While the hospitality industry is always known for its customer service, during this slump, customer service was redefined as businesses were looking to increase marketshare from their competitors. Because of this fierce competition, this industry is rebounding with some estimates projecting growth to triple by the next decade and profits to soar.

A career in hospitality management means a career in service. These individuals work directly with customers or behind the scenes to ensure pleasurable experiences for guests. MBA graduates may stand a better chance of utilizing their skill base with larger companies and major enterprises that place a higher value on advanced training, like major cruise lines, hotel chains and casino operations. The hospitality industry is generally recognized as being comprised of four key segments: lodging, food service, transportation, and commercial recreation. Additionally, exciting areas within these segments include incentive travel, event management, gaming, and destination marketing.

Positions are as varied as one’s distinct personality and are offered in such exciting venues as theme parks, attractions, cruise ships, resorts, and casinos–to name a few. In addition to operations management jobs, professional positions are available in multiple areas of interest. These areas include sales & marketing, public relations, human resources, accounting, facility management, engineering, finance, training & education, law, real estate, information technology, and event planning. Here is a list of potential job titles:

Lodging and Resorts

  • General Manager
  • Resident Manager
  • Executive Housekeeper
  • Front Office Manager
  • Guest Services Manager
  • Convention Services Manager
  • Assistant Manager
  • Director of Sales
  • Human Resources Director
  • Rooms Division Director

Food and Beverage Industry

  • General Manager
  • Assistant Manager
  • Executive Chef
  • Banquet Manager
  • Food and Beverage Director
  • Catering Manager
  • Catering Sales Manager
  • Nightclub Owner/Operator

Meetings and Events Management

  • Convention Sales Manager
  • Conference Services Manager
  • Special Events Manager

Private Club Management

  • Clubhouse Manager
  • Director of Membership
  • Director of Special Events
  • General Manager
  • Assistant Manager

Commercial Recreation Management

  • City/County Director of Recreation
  • Spa Manager
  • Parks Manager
  • Theme Park Manager
  • Golf Course Manager

Cruise Industry

  • Director of Activities
  • Chief Purser
  • Sales & Marketing

Salary Breakdown by Hospitality Career
The hospitality industry is broad with tremendous career opportunities. And, job growth is on a notable upswing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job growth in the hospitality industry has increased by 17 percent over the past decade, generating more than two million new jobs in the U.S. has calculated the average salary for various hospitality careers. When searching for a new hospitality career, consider these salaries based on data compiled in July 2013:


In the hospitality industry, size and location matter. Salary may be greatly affected by the size of the hotel, restaurant or attraction you work for as well as the area or region in which it is located. A general manager of a five-star hotel in New York City will earn a higher salary than the general manager of a local boutique hotel in a small town.

 References and Further Reading:


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