QUESTION: I’m in the restaurant operations / food & beverage industry. I’ve been looking to make a pivot and now that I’ve been laid off, I feel like this is the right time. How can I shift industries?
Research, research, research. Explore new, appealing opportunities—and their requirements—using the myriad of online resources available. Then, take stock of your skills/knowledge to see how you will bring value to the new field/industry. Companies now are looking at ways to innovate, cut costs, increase revenue. What can you do to help them achieve their goals? Promote your relevant strengths.
First, I recommend assessing your interests, values, and skills and then consider alternative careers where your skills, experience, and expertise are transferable. Once you complete these exercises, I strongly recommend hiring a resume writer/career coach to guide through the rebranding process. Look for someone you connect with that offers top notch services and has a proven track record.
Restaurant operations is one of the industries with the most transferrable skills — you are required to operate under extreme pressure, balance competing priorities, and deal with difficult personalities. These are skills that any employer would love. Your role as a job seeker is to connect the dots. Pull language from the job posting into your resume, then massage it until it reflects your story.
Your experience in restaurant operations/F&B gives you a broad slate of skills that other industries need,especially now. Identify your best skills and analyze which industries require those. Search for companies in those industries that are currently in hiring mode. Many have thousands of jobs available. Research those companies and tailor your resume and your skills towards their needs.
First, identify your transferable skills that you could apply to this new industry & identify any gaps where you would need to learn new skills. Take a look at your current resume (and if you don’t have one now’s the time to start one!) as this will help future employers understand what you bring to the table. In addition, networking and updating your LinkedIn profile will help you greatly.
With any career shift, it’s critical to highlight transferable skills throughout the search process. This may include customer service, communication, working in a fast-past environment, and more depending on your role. Also, consider opportunities to further align with your targeted industries. Join professional organizations, network, and obtain certifications or training, if relevant.
You did not state the position you currently hold. The F&B industry features skill sets that are readily transferable. For example, managers conduct scheduling, budgeting, marketing, guest relations, and risk management. Front line workers handle procedures, computer usage, customer service, safety, and quality control. Market those, as well as any projects that you have successfully completed.
It is important to identify specific job targets that match your strengths and passion. Search sites like LinkedIn & Indeed to find jobs of interest. Then, build a powerful, “targeted” resume, showcase the value you offer, include relevant keywords, and highlight relevant skills and experience. Concurrently, network w/ people in that field. Learn all you can so that you stand out.
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