Are you overlooking an invaluable resource that’s right under your nose?

What’s the resource I’m talking about?

It’s your team member’s creativity.

And, because creativity cuts both ways, there’s a second question I’d like you to think about too:

When you’re hiring new team members, are you recruiting as creatively as you could?

What makes creativity so important?

That’s easy.

Creativity and the hospitality industry have always gone hand in hand. That’s not just because most of the great chefs and restauranteurs were and still are creative mavericks, but also because the world of hospitality is so vibrant and non-conformist that creatively minded people are drawn to it like [Warning! Overused Cliché Ahead!] moths to a flame.

Hospitality people aren’t usually bland nine-to-fivers who come into our sector because they’ve got nothing better to do. Or, at least, the hospitality people who are on our books aren’t. The kind of first-class hospitality professionals we’ll find for you, have energy, personality, passion, and fantastic ideas to share, as well as consummate hospitality skills. They’re natural born creatives, and when a hospitality employer knows how to tap into their team member’s creativity in the best way, it’s a win-win for everybody.

Just think about the key attributes of creative people.

  • They’re problem solvers.
  • They love fresh challenges.
  • They’re better able to change and adapt.
  • They’re open to new ideas, duties, and methods.
  • They’ve often thought of a solution before other people have even realised there’s a problem.
  • They tend to be more empathetic and intuitive and instinctively look for ways to make the other person’s experience better.
  • But, on the minus side (at least as far as a complacent employer is concerned), they don’t like to be side-lined or under-used. If they are, they’ll quickly start looking for better opportunities elsewhere. And, let’s face it, who could blame them? Nobody enjoys seeing their talents going to waste, especially when those talents could be put to better use by an employer who appreciates them.

Here’s the bottom line: there really is a war for talent going on right now. Employers across the entire hospitality sector are finding it harder than ever to recruit new people despite the fact there’s still a significant rate of unemployment across the whole of the UK. Everyone has spent so much time banging on about increasing pay and improving conditions (including us!) that it’s actually made a lot of employers complacent. They’re not being as proactive as they could be, and that might be because (especially in the case of employers like large hotel chains) they have to go to head office to get anything approved.

But head office aren’t on the front line. They’re focused on facts and figures, and they don’t have the day-to-day stress of attracting new employees and holding onto them. That’s the ground zero employer’s problem…

…and that’s the reason why we are encouraging our clients to think more creatively when they’re looking for new team members. We’re also encouraging our clients to use their team member’s creativity in more effective ways. If all employers made more effort to tap into their team member’s creativity, they’d probably discover there’s much less of a skills shortage than we’ve been led to believe.

How can recruiting creative people help solve the skills shortage?

When you recruit creative staff and encourage them to share their ideas, your business will benefit from their imagination, innovation, and enthusiasm. People who deal directly with customers and carry out day-to-day processes have had a lot of changes and challenges to adapt to. They’re the ones employers are trusting to get the job done in the very best way possible, and they’re the ones who know better than anyone what has to be done because they’re the people who are doing it! We’re urging employers not to let that knowledge and insight go to waste, and the best way to do that is by asking your staff members how things could be done differently and what else they could do to add value in their role – not just for your business and customers, but for themselves too. Encourage them to think outside the box and listen to them when they do. Also, take time to find out more about how your team members tick; what are their interests, what are their strengths, what are their hidden talents? The more you invest in them, the more they’ll invest in you.

How can you recruit more creative people?

Step One: Think outside the box!

Step Two: Don’t limit yourself to the kind of candidates you’re looking for. If there’s one upside to the current country-wide unemployment situation, it’s that a lot of people from a lot of different industries are looking for work and keeping their minds open to working in sectors they’d never considered before… like hospitality. Even though they don’t have hospitality experience, they’ve got a tremendous amount of other experience to bring. So, when you’re recruiting new staff, cast your net wider. Let prospective candidates know that you’re just as interested in who they are as people as you are in the hospitality background they may or may not have.

Step Three: When it comes to the interview stage, ask more creative questions. Find out what they think their hidden skills are, what their strengths are, what they enjoy doing. Set them a hypothetical problem associated with the role and see how flexible they are when coming up with a solution. Let them know that, if they become part of your team, you’ll be encouraging them to keep innovating and you won’t want them to hold back on their ideas. Truly creative candidates will love that, and they’ll want to work for you even more.

If you’re a creative person, how will hospitality employers find you?

Step One: Talk to us!

Step Two: Don’t be afraid to put your skills and personality traits on your c.v., especially if they’re examples of how your own unique brand of creativity would make you perfect for this role. Don’t ramble and don’t embellish, just state the extra qualities you can bring in a way that the person reading your c.v. will want to know more.

Investing in your employee’s creativity is more important than ever in today’s hugely competitive hospitality industry, so contact our expert team on 020 7580 4398 or email info@primerec.co.uk to find out more.