A food and beverage director in a major lodging property must be ready for a variety of tasks each and every day. In one sense, this position requires two different individuals to keep the operation moving forward. One is the leader, or strategic visionary, looking ahead to the future of the operation (that may be just one or three months, or it could be one full year out). The other is the day-to-day manager, constantly moving through the organization to be sure all events are proceeding according to plan and guests are treated beyond their expectations.
In this position, I have the responsibility of overseeing several departments: culinary, banquets, room service, specialty and theme restaurants, and all private bars. While an ideal day is spent on planning, more often than not I find myself in discussion with staff or guests. Regular meetings include the following examples:
Purpose: Honor employees of the month at a luncheon. To gain a better appreciation of the job of a director of food and beverage, we should look at an actual job description. Again, recognize that all job descriptions are written as an ideal, and every day brings deviations from that ideal, given the unique daily circumstances found in any dynamic lodging property.
Position: Director of Food and Beverage
Reports to: General Manager
Specific Operations Functions:
Specific Management Functions:
A major part of my job involves maintaining warm, hospitable guest relations in all guest contacts and positive employee relations in a supportive environment. I also try to increase guest satisfaction index scores (our feedback mechanism) and to lower guest complaints by ensuring prompt, courteous, and proper service and surveying guest comment cards to correct negative situations immediately.
It is also important to ensure that my division is operating in compliance with all local, state, and federal laws and government regulations. To assure that our guests have a quality stay, I am also responsible for communicating effectively within and between departments, ensuring good safety practices of employees and performing special projects as requested.
In trying to achieve or exceed budgeted sales goals, our division management team constantly seeks ways to operate within budgeted guidelines by maintaining effective controls. This includes developing and forecasting accurate and aggressive long- and short-range financial objectives and monitoring them through daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual reviews of our performance.
I am expected to perform special projects as requested and to maintain a high level of professional appearance, demeanor, ethics, and image of subordinates and myself. Part of our culture in this hotel concerns professional development of staff associates, and it is among my responsibilities to find ways to provide for this.
As you can see, the job of a hotel food and beverage director requires a high-energy person who loves working with people in a variety of dynamic situations. The ability to lead a group of employees in pursuit of operational goals is paramount. Students should actively seek experiences in their college career that provide opportunity to learn the skills mentioned in this article.
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Food And Beverage Division
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