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The Millennials are Coming! And We’re Hiring Them!

The Millennials are Coming | Hiring & Retention | AGI Hospitality RecruitingI recently came upon a very interesting infographic about the mindset of today’s Millennials whose job-hopping choices impact restaurant profitability. I was intrigued by the statistics within the information, because years ago, I wrote my Master’s thesis on the topic of managing generational differences in a diverse workforce. As I reflect back on all of the knowledge I gained on that topic, it still sparks a big curiosity in me since I interview so many Millennials and prepare them to meet with our great restaurant employers nationwide. My hyper-awareness of this specific demographic is so second-nature to me because of my knowledge and experiences working this particular age group. Now that the Millennials are coming, we need to spend some time to better understand tehm so we can include them into the diverse restaurant workforces of today.  We will be hiring Millennials, retaining them as employees, and motivating them to advance in their career path; so it should become a bigger priority to get to know this generation.

Millennials are made up of those born from roughly 1980 to 2000. This generation makes up a large majority of restaurant workers (about 75%), so managers and employers need to be attune to behavior and motivational factors among this generation in order to maximize profit through employee retention. It seems Millennials are one of the toughest generations to truly adapt management strategies. So how do we tackle this opportunity?

Because of the era they have grown up in, Millennials tend to have distinct personality traits. In order to fully embrace these differences, managers and employers must adjust their attentions to wanting to learn more about the habits and expectations of this particular group of people who endorse the company’s brand. With the familiar, yet unfair, stereotypes that Millennials find themselves battling, I’m very interested in learning about what techniques hiring managers are using to ensure that stereotypical barriers are not getting in the way of finding those best-fit restaurant staff members.

For instance, it’s amazing to contemplate the fact that Millennials are the first generation to have been raised in an era of such advanced technological breakthroughs that impact daily life at an astronomical level! Never before has any generation been continually exposed to high-tech gadgets that provide instantaneous results! Microwaves, computers, cell phones, satellites, and ATM’s seem to have always been so commonplace in the life of a Millennial, that without just one of these things, the disruptions that would be experienced would be – well, AWFUL! Of course, we must admit that not every single Millennial has grown up with every bit of technology I’ve mentioned; but chances are very high that the majority of this age group knows about every one of these things that I’ve mentioned.

Let’s learn together through best practices!  So, Managers — How are you addressing your Millennial employees’ generational differences to ensure productivity and retention?

TAGS: Career Advice, Career Path, hiring manager, job seeker, Restaurant Manager

Your Resume Should Be Your Golden Ticket

I know, I know; you hear this all the time – resumes are very critical as the first step in being considered for that job you want!  When you have the opportunity to submit a resume, you should feel confident that you have constructed it well enough so that it will serve as the “golden ticket” to get you an interview invitation.  Today, I want to help you better understand what all of it means and what you can do to improve your resume submissions.

Speaking from the marketing side of personal branding, I can assure you that how your resume looks, reads, and feels seriously matters to the hiring manager.  Your goal is to present a resume that the hiring manager will slowly comb over multiple times, write notes on it, and share with others who are involved in the hiring decision.  You want your name and credentials to be sticky in the mind of everyone who reads it.  You want your resume to have so many company fingerprints on it, that the crisp paper it was printed on becomes warn with wonderful wear!  This doesn’t mean that you print out your resume and mail it in (unless you are instructed to do that).  This is relevant to the hiring manager at the receiving-end of an electronically-submitted resume who will want to print it out as a hardcopy.  And think about how special it is when others email your resume throughout the company – how great it is when your resume is part of an email trail that has a nice long list of people it was shared with along the way!  These extra people can become ambassadors for you!   Each “eShare” will give your resume a longer life, and that’s the ticket!

I often relate marketing yourself for a job through a resume as being similar to how the auto industry uses spectacular car brochures in the showroom lobby.  These are printed materials that are crafted to catch your eye, give you the specs of the car, the unique and powerful features of that car, and the options the car can come with or special ordered.  Even when you know the exact make and model of the car you want, the printed brochure is still very useful in giving you further details that will help you feel more comfortable about your buying decision.  Of course, there are plenty of other ways to buy a car; but when you know that you want a brand new car customized exactly the way you want it and plan to get the most mileage from it, you will seek out all of the available information about it first.  Sometimes you choose a totally different car then you originally had in mind.  But for the most part, the dream situation is determining what car you want and then pursuing the means to find out if that car is really what you want to buy.  In essence, your resume is the brochure of YOU in the showroom!

Considering Your Resume | AGI Hospitality RecruitingSo many articles are written about resume writing tips regarding content, context, and syntax.  But I have a feeling that, while you know that you should be reading these articles, you probably don’t have the time or patience to hunt them down for yourself.  How handy would it be if – right here and right now – I gave you some links of articles about resume tips that you could utilize for better results?  These article links that I am providing are currently trending and are excellent!  I wouldn’t be sharing them if they were bad techniques or impractical.  They are quality, and I hope you will set aside some time to really “study” them out to see which methods you can begin to use this week to improve your resume.

Yes, I am asking you to do some “homework” on this.  Yes, it will feel just like a major school project if you are taking your career destiny seriously enough – but imagine the better results you will gain if you do this for yourself!  Invest important precious time and energy in YOU for a better working-life future! Your heart of hearts tells you that you are worth it, so do it!  Study these things and implement everything that is relevant to your career path.  Become an expert in your own resume construction and submit it proudly rather than hopefully.  Bookmark or save this page in your browser as a favorite so you can reference it as many times as you need.  In order to really absorb and apply anything from these readings, it will be best if you don’t rush through all of the articles. After all, it’s about YOU, so take the time that is necessary to make a measurable difference in how your resume is being considered!

I challenge you to do this; and if you do, I promise that you will be so happy that you did!  Please let me know which article you found to be the most useful to you, or if there are any other articles out there that you would like to share.

These are the links that I recommend:

8 Ways to Make Sure Your Application Gets Seen

4 Tips for Designing a Resume

Is Your Resume the “Best?”

Designing a Resume that will Get You Hired

Is My Resume Going in the Garbage?

Your Ideal Job Needs an Ideal Resume

Resume Software and 8 Tips to Help You Beat the System

Top 4 Things That Recruiters Look for on Your Resume INFOGRAPHIC

TAGS: Career Advice, Career Path, resume

For a Happier Career Transition, Hire a Hugger!

Last week, I had a conversation with a candidate who was very honest with me about his frustrations regarding his career search.  He said very bluntly, “You recruiters – there are a lot of you, and most are not very good or respectful.”  I was initially surprised by his assertion, but then I found myself in a much more compassionate place with his frustration because I actually agree with him!

The fact is, most recruiters are so task-driven, they fail to remember that they are dealing with people who are trying to make one of the most important decisions in their lives!  Changing jobs is very stressful, and this stress can be compounded when a job seeker has to work with disrespectful recruiters who don’t follow-up with them or give false expectations of how they will help.

When I first started my career in the recruiting business, I had an energized, full-fledged, sincere desire to help everyone.  And I mean Every One!  I wanted to get everyone I talked with a new job that would increase their family’s livelihood.  While my personal motives have not changed, I am now more realistic by understanding that I can’t find everyone a new job all of the time —  especially because the job needs to be the best-fit for them and for the employer.  Our core responsibility is to find the right Happier Career Transition, Hire a Hugger | AGI Hospitality Recruiting candidates for the jobs we have to fill; otherwise, we would not be a valuable service to either our clients or the job seekers who depend upon us to help them find a better career.

For this reason, we know that our communications with each job seeker must be honest, respectful, and transparent so accurate expectations can be clear.  For example, if we can find you a new job, then great — let’s do it!  But more importantly, if we can’t find you a new job, it is best for everyone to be very truthful and recognize that a best-fit career match will not happen right now.  It’s very possible that we could help you in the near future with another opportunity that will be better suited for you; and if that’s the case, we would certainly want to reconnect.  This direct and truthful communication is imperative to ensure we are avoiding any misconceptions that would mislead a job seeker.  The job seeker understands that we are not leaving them hanging and waiting unnecessarily for immediate results.  It boils down to respecting each person’s specific and unique career goals.

Early on in my career as a recruiter, I was haunted by the way my profession had been labeled as a “head- hunter.”  After all, it’s not an appealing image, and it still strikes me as a negative term that does not sum up the spirit of what we do.  I have never hunted a head in my life, and I know for a certainty that I never will!  Hunting implies tactical maneuvers such as stealth tracking, hidden trappings, sly approaches, and deadly decoys.  Frankly, I think this term was probably created by job seekers who found themselves working with recruiters who made them feel tracked and trapped.  Recruiters who lack respect for a job seeker’s career health and well-being will definitely give the impression of being hunters.   My solution to this unfortunate labeling is to put forth a bigger effort to reflect the integrity of how we do business, as well as demonstrate our great respect for every individual we serve.  Regardless of whether or not we can help everyone find a new career, I consider myself, and all of the recruiters at AGI, to be Head-Huggers!  That’s the real nature of what we do as qualified professionals within the hospitality industry!  We embrace each job seeker with genuine hopes to help!  Our tactics include honesty, respect, and mentorship.

If you are a recruiter reading my conviction, please be encouraged!  You already know that success as a recruiter is about managing your time and tasks.  But what you need to remember is this; the best way to perform every part of your job is to have a deeper respect for each job seeker who comes to you for help.  Be truthful and forward so your candidates will have the correct and realistic expectations.  If we all work harder to accomplish this each and every time, we can change the perception of our industry! Working together as a whole, we can abandon the negative connotations of head-hunter forever.

If you are a job seeker, we ask that you hold us to this value.  Anything less than hospitable is unacceptable to me.  If, at any point, you believe that a recruiter here at AGI isn’t warmly welcoming you or respecting you, please contact me directly at john@agimangement.com .  Your concerns will remain confidential.

We wholeheartedly view our work as a ministry, and we feel called to help others through their career transition.  We hope we can consistently portray this belief and be a positive role within the marketplace.

TAGS: Career Advice, Career Path, Customer Needs, Customer Service, job seeker

It’s Not Just Job Tenure, But Progress

Let’s jump right away to the tough question: Can you explain to the Restaurant Hiring Manager how it was that you worked at the same place for more than eight years, and yet, you never received a promotion or further training to advance during that time period?  If you’re tongue-tied, then keep reading!  Being unprepared with your explanation probably won’t turn out well for you.  To help you think this through, we’ll talk about why it matters to hiring managers in the first place.  After all, shouldn’t good job tenure speak for itself?  Isn’t that the big goal anyway – to stay at one job for a very long time because it shows steadiness? That sounds reasonable; but the issue of stagnation arises, and you must explain it during the job interview.

Because there is a big difference between management responsibilities and those that are performed by basic staff, we want to focus on the management Make Progress | Move Forward | AGI Hospitality Recruiting side of things in this particular article.  We want to bring home the point that if you want a management-type position, you have to show that you have grown and can continue to grow in your skill sets and knowledge.

Some simple math can shed some light on how important professional and personal growth is when observed from the 10,000-foot level:  Each day has 24 hours.  We usually divide the average day into three eight-hour segments, such as 1) working hours, 2) sleeping hours, and 3) everything-else hours.  This means that we spend around one-third of our healthy adult lives on the job, one-third is for sleeping, and one-third is spent cramming in everything outside of the first two-thirds.  Shocking, isn’t it?  We know that this is a general assumption, and sometimes the 3-way split isn’t always so nice and tidy.  But on the whole, we can agree that, yes, one-third of our life is spent doing something to provide for ourselves and our families. 

Even when you have had great tenure at a job (or several jobs), but there is very little evidence that you grew professionally or personally, there will probably be fewer checkmarks for you in the “yes” column than your job competitors who can show that they are capable of such growth.  For example, someone could have an employment history of working each job on-average for around five years; what may first appear as job hopping, a second look could reveal that each new job opportunity was a “step-up” in experience, responsibilities, or job title.  When the long-tenure-no-growth applicant is placed alongside the short-tenure-plus-growth applicant, who do you think generally gets selected?  The answer is the short-tenure-plus-growth job candidate.  This strategy makes sense because management positions require leadership, and a leader thrives on continual growth experiences.  It’s a character trait that can withstand stressful demands of push-pull stretches that is a part of every business and industry.  From big business to small business, a history of professional and personal growth always shines brighter like a well-polished coin.  Polishing only happens with effort, and that’s why it makes a measurable difference.    

When hiring managers want management-ready people for the positions, they need to be convinced that the abilities and experiences are already present.  A manager-in-training position is very different.  However, management-ready means that hitting the ground running is expected.  Those who give the impression that they will only hit the ground with a thud and break some bones in the process will not be seriously considered.  Especially in the restaurant industry where customers and agency standards must be satisfied, you better not even go into the kitchen if you can’t stand the heat (famous saying said slightly different)! 

It’s interesting when you think about heat and how it has the power to change everything.  It changes a glob of flour, water, yeast, and salt into bread.  It can bend an iron rod.  It separates gold from solid rock.  It even changes ordinary people into extraordinary leaders!  Restaurant Managers need to have had a little heat applied in their life as evidence that they can take the heat in the kitchen!

What can be done if the organization you are with doesn’t provide some “heat” for hot opportunities for growth?  The solution is for you to find ways to grow yourself.  It’s really up to you anyway.  You are the real master of your life’s path.  You know yourself best; so once you identify the direction you want to go, then go grow!  Many people find a way to get education (degree or certificate), and some even find ways to volunteer to gain the experiences they want.  For ideas on how to gain some volunteer experiences that will enhance your career, you can read this article from Forbes. For those who specifically want to gain certification for their restaurant management career, we’ve included this link to some information that should be helpful.  Once you decide what to do, just begin to do it.  The ways will open for you after those first few steps.  Avoid becoming stagnant unless you want to attract mosquitoes.  Move to make progress.     

We think Socrates said something pretty profound centuries ago that still has great significance today.  He said, “Let him who would move the world first move himself.” 

Want to read more career advice?  We’ve written other articles like this one regarding finding your “happy” elsewhere.  If you know others who would find these readings helpful, please share it with them.  We are happy to help!

TAGS: Career Advice, Career Path, hiring manager

Select Your Direction

“Which way should I go?”  This is the classic quandary that spans across the ages by every walk of life at various stages in life. Since we do spend the majority of our lives as working adults, it’s very important to know within ourselves in which direction we will go to find a successful career path.  The beauty is that we never have to stick with a decision that we made about a career ten or 20 years ago – we can change directions when we discover that small voice inside that whispers, “When you love your work, it doesn’t feel like work.”  The trick is to figure out how you get from where you currently are to where you actually want to be.

Choose your path

Which Way Should I Go?

We can take a big hint from the wise, yet strange, Cheshire Cat who has a similar discussion in the book, Alice in Wonderland.  In the story when Alice finds herself roaming around in circles and feeling lost, she meets the Cheshire Cat and asks him about which way she should go.   The Cheshire Cat asks if she has a place in mind, and Alice answers that it really doesn’t matter.  The simplistically sensible Cheshire Cat advises her that if it really doesn’t matter where she goes, then it really doesn’t matter which way she goes.  We can view this advice as being shallow and insensitive to Alice’s immediate needs, or we can see it as a snippet of deep truth that Alice should heavily ponder before she takes one more step.  Watch this VIDEO: Alice Asks the Cheshire Cat Which Way to Go

Here are Five Strategies that can help you fix that dilemma:

  1. Define What Matters –Write down the factors you want from a great career.  Money should never be the sole focus and drive; your wallet may be full, but your quality of life could feel empty an unfulfilled.  Do you want challenges and growth, steadiness and routine, or be a part of the unknown and undiscovered possibilities?  Work-happiness has a meaning for each person, so find out what that means to you.
  2. Change Your Vantage Point — If you’ve ever been in a plane and looked out the window to see how tiny a big world can appear from a different vantage point, you can relate to how this changes your perspective.  What we know as being miles of road on the ground, the same roads are only inches from a bird’s-eye view. This is how you should look at your career path; step back (way, way back) to reveal more of the course you’ll need to take to get from point A to point B (and so forth) until you reach the point of your destination, which is the job in the career you really want and love.
  3. Chart Your Expected Chunks of Achievements – if the journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step, then identify what that first step is for you.  Will it be more training, more education, a different environment, a better job in your industry of choice, or connecting with the right people that can help you move forward?   Seeing your goals spread out like blocks on a board game help you visualize your progress and what lies ahead that still must be done.
  4. Plan Your Work and Work Your Plan — rarely will a magic moment come along and suddenly place you smack-dab into the exact job you’ve always wanted.  While it’s very true that sometimes, as they say, “the stars will align” and everything falls into place, depending upon it will only lead to increased self-doubt and disappointment.  Your personal roadmap is your guide.  Mark each step of the way and celebrate the milestones!
  5. Share Your Progress with Others — a cheering squad can keep you on track and always motivate you to complete your journey along your career path.  Somebody who knows somebody else can tell another somebody else about your hard work.  Then the next thing you know, some stars begin to appear in alignment for you because you are actually participating in arranging the stars yourself!

And remember:  The Cheshire Cat didn’t make it easy for Alice.  Instead, he posed the likelihood that she would continue to wander around in wonderland if she didn’t know where she wanted to go.  Chasing a white rabbit was a spontaneous decision she made, and all through the story, she never knew where she was going.  Don’t let that happen to you along your career path!  Know where you want to go, and then you’ll know which way to go!

AGI Hospitality Recruiting can help you determine the right direction for you. Contact Us so we can begin the conversation!  We guarantee there are no white rabbit here!

TAGS: Career Advice, Career Path, job seeker, Management