The most desirable skills for waiter / waitress
The most desirable skills are obviously those to do with a work in a fast paced, customer facing environment. Due to the nature of work, previous experience or natural predisposition to effective communication is a primary condition for every candidate. You wouldn’t want to be served by a gloomy, very quiet waiter would you? Team working skills are also in high demand, since the whole business is base on co-operation between front and back of the house, which basically means restaurant and the kitchen.
One of the most important traits of character for a waitress or waiter is also being able to keep cool and collected during the busy times when most other employees like kitchen staff and manager are close to the state of panic – you need to calmly perform your work and not react to, which is very unfortunate to admit, sometimes rude comments. After service you will often receive apologies for any improper behaviour from your colleagues but the truth you’re not allowed to lose your patience and temper during the service. For your and your customer’s sake.
Use transferable skills to market yourself
Even if you’re never worked in restaurants before, chances are that your academic background and work experience have already equipped you with most of the necessary skills. Like in any other job application, you should stress any experience which could give you advantage in the catering industry. Have you spoken before a group of people before, perhaps as a class representative? Great because you’ll be speaking to large groups of customers. Have you been a part of a literature club in school and done some reading out loud? Amazing, speaking out loud and clear is an a must for any waiter who aims to keep his job. Did you work in a place where you were required to exercise team work (and almost any workplace could be presented in such a way that fits this requirement)? If so, you’ll be able to show it off real soon in the restaurant. Writing a CV for a waiter / waitress is about presenting yourself from a certain angle. You can do It.
Do your research about the employer
While most of applicants produce just one generic CV and distribute it to all employers looking to fill some vacancies, it’s smart to tailor each one specifically to fit particular restaurant’s requirements. Having said that, common sense needs to be applied to the amount of time you spend on each of the CV’s – it’s not a work which would warrant spending time to rewrite CV from the scratch each time. Instead, make minor changes to reflect your skill set fitting particular venue – think very fast paced family restaurant, slow homely bistro or posh sliver service restaurant.
Keep it short and simple
The rule of a thumb is: keep your waiter / waitress CV to a maximum of two pages long. It’s about enough space to properly present yourself and list all the skills which could make you a brilliant waiter or waitress. And please remember to leave out the unrelated information like ability to make amazing spreadsheets in Excel or forklift truck driver’s licence. No need to show off, this CV is purely to portray you as a perfect fit for the particular job.