"Housekeeping ain't no joke" - Louisa May Alcott
It's a sector that continues to grow, and experienced housekeepers are one of the most sought-after professionals within the hospitality sector. But, whether you're based in a hotel, a private household, a commercial building, or a superyacht etc, in order to really succeed, you'll need to have the following skills:
Mistakes happen with any job, and a housekeeper can encounter accidents such as damaging delicate clothing or breaking a glass etc. Being honest about an error demonstrates to the employer that they can trust you, whether it's leaving their property under your custody while absent, or knowing that you will handle the responsibilities of the job with the utmost care, unsupervised or not.
Many employers seek a housekeeper who can be flexible, particularly when working in private households, being able to adjust work timings around childcare, ad-hoc events, or family schedules. Demonstrating the ability to be versatile in this way proves your dedication and loyalty and confirms to your employer that you can be relied upon. Having a creative mind can also help to be able to find new ways of completing tasks faster and more efficiently, or being able to adapt to a changing environment to fulfil your job seamlessly.
Having a sense of pride in your work is key in so many jobs, but a good housekeeper will have a meticulous approach to their work, being able to pay attention to the smallest detail. An individual with a diverse set of skills will be extremely attractive to hire - e.g. candidates who have extensive laundry knowledge of cleaning methods and handling different clothing and soft furnishing materials; extra cooking skills and childcare experience for those based in households; and organisation skills such as folding towels properly and keeping cupboards orderly - are just some examples.
4. Good Communication
Housekeepers working in hotels will have contact with guests every day, so a friendly and helpful demeanour is really important. Being able to resolve complaints on the 'front line' and helping guests with special requests can be vital for running a successful hotel. Listening to direction is just as key, and a successful housekeeper will ensure they understand all the requirements of their job, knowing when to ask questions and responding in a polite manner. As with other hospitality jobs, conducting yourself in a professional manner at all times, even when under pressure, is crucial. Avoiding aggressive behaviour and remaining calm can be tricky sometimes, but integral to a successful career in this market.
Working with families in their homes or on their private property such as a yacht or office space, requires an understanding to work with discretion at all times. Being able to work efficiently, but without the intrusion of private space, is paramount. There may be times you are left alone in someone else's home or given the keys to their property to look after, however a professional housekeeper will know better than to abuse their employer's trust and respect their privacy at all times.
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