Lodging managers, the skilled professionals who ensure that travelers enjoy a quality experience at hotels and other lodging establishments around the world, play a key role in the hospitality and lodging sectors. Generally responsible not only for a property’s guests, but also its business and facility operations, lodging managers accomplish a wide variety of tasks on a daily basis.
The types of properties that lodging managers oversee are equally diverse, and include hotels, motels, bed-and-breakfasts, resorts and timeshares. All lodging managers must possess strong communication, leadership, and managerial skills and work well under pressure. A degree or professional certificate in hospitality management is a preferred means of acquiring the knowledge, skills and training which, along with work experience, are essential to success as a lodging manager.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) said job growth of lodging managers is expected to be 1% through 2022 as the industry shifts from full-service properties with fewer distinct departments to oversee to more limited-service properties.
Also, some companies are trimming operations and assigning one manager to run several properties. Some large, full-service properties, such as casinos, convention properties and resorts should continue to need managers. Candidates who have received advanced training and education in hospitality management will generally enjoy the widest variety of job opportunities and be most likely to secure employment at luxury hotels, international resorts, and other properties offering premium guest services.
While the responsibilities of lodging managers are unique to each property, lodging managers usually perform some or all of the following on a regular basis:
Because the primary responsibility of a lodging manager is to guarantee a positive experience for every guest, lodging managers must also problem-solve creatively, be able to effectively resolve complaints and solve conflict. As well, managers may represent the property to external constituencies including suppliers, government regulators, news media, franchisors, and/or community services organizations.
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The average salary for lodging managers in May of 2014 was $57,200, according to the BLS. Those in the top 10% of the pay range earned $94,800.
Workers in the gambling, and rooming and boarding house industries earned slightly more at $65,500 and $58,600 respectively, according to the BLS. Managers for RV parks earned less than the overall average at $53,000, as did those in the traveler accommodation industry at $56,000.
The top-paying state for lodging managers was New Jersey with an average salary of $92,200, followed by the District of Columbia at $91,500 and Nevada at $86,500.
Prospective students are encouraged to conduct independent research, as salary potential may vary depending on location, experience, organization, and education.
Most lodging managers possess extensive experience in the hospitality industry, a degree or certificate in hotel or hospitality management, or both.
Coursework for hospitality management typically covers operations budgets and budget variance analytics; hospitality trends and technology; fundamental principles of hospitality marketing and sales; human resources, law, facility management, reservations, and foodservice management; and management and leadership, among other essential competencies. Many programs also provide training and education in information systems specific to the hospitality industry, such as reservations and point-of-sale systems.
As in most professions nationwide, lodging managers with the most experience and training usually command the best employment and salary prospects. Current associates in the hospitality sector and anyone looking to advance a career as a lodging manager can benefit from receiving advanced training and education in the business of hospitality management.
Do you like working with people? Does a career field in which every day is different sound appealing? Do you want to excel in a variety of functions, from setting a budget to serving a guest? If so, employment as a hotel or lodging manager may be a good fit for you.
Lodging managers must be able to balance strong interpersonal and communication skills with keen business acumen. People are at the heart of the hospitality and lodging industries, and the best lodging managers have the skills and training necessary to meet their needs, whether interacting with staff members, owners, colleagues, or guests. Take the first step toward a fun and rewarding career by earning the Management Certificate in the Business of Hospitality from The School of Hospitality Business in the Broad College of Business at Michigan State University, a recognized authority in hospitality business education, research and, service.