Interpersonal skills and professional qualities

Interpersonal skills are what people need to interact with each other. The word 'interpersonal' means 'between people'. Interpersonal skills can also be called a social skill which means how we show respect to each other.

The hospitality industry is a people based industry which provides products and services, therefore staff working in the industry must have or develop excellent interpersonal skills to be successful in their job role.

Two guests at a hotel reception.

Interpersonal skills are crucially important in building and maintaining relationships between both staff and customers and staff across departments.

  • Body language - eye contact, facial expressions, posture, gestures
  • Attitude and behaviour
  • Speaking
  • Listening
  • Greeting
  • Respect
  • Manners
  • Empathy

Linked to these skills are other attributes like personal hygiene, appearance and timekeeping as well as the presentation of work areas and equipment.

The most important thing to remember is that customers bring profit to the business so they must feel welcomed, valued and that you care about meeting their needs.

The skills and qualities of all staff will influence if these two factors are met. Excellent interpersonal skills and professional qualities result in excellent customer service. This results in returning customers and recommendations which, in turn, leads to even more business.