If you take on a bar job when you’re at university, you may think you’ve learned nothing more than how to pull a pint. However, working behind a bar can give you a number of new skills that you can take with you when you start looking for graduate work.
Perhaps one of the biggest skills you’ll learn from working in a bar is how to work as part of a team. The chances are that you’ll be working in shifts, and have a group of colleagues that you’ll work alongside or manage. When you start applying for graduate jobs, employers may want to know how you’ve worked with other people and the challenges you had to overcome as part of a team. Tell them how you worked well with others and emphasise that your team player nature allowed you to complete tasks and keep customers happy.
Working under pressure
Employers of graduate jobs need to know that you can work well under pressure. It’s an essential skill if you want to work in a fast-paced environment like a newsroom, a hospital ward or in law. When you work in a bar, you’ll most likely have had to deal with influxes of customers and complaints about food – explain how you overcame this and you’ll show your hiring manager that you’re the perfect candidate when it comes to working under pressure.
When you work in a bar, you’ll likely face disgruntled or drunken customers, so showing that you can handle this is another fantastic trait. Many of the jobs on the CV Library website, a site home to thousands of jobs in Manchester, require resilience, and having that quality is important if you want to get anywhere in the professional world.
Handled money when you were working at your bar? Not only does this demonstrate strong numeracy skills, but it also shows that you are a trusted member of the team. Even if you’re not looking for a graduate role involving the handling of money, it’s a useful skill to have, and it could come in useful when working with your human resources department or hosting an event to raise money for charity.
Time and priority management
Time management is one of the most important skills any recruiter will look for. Of course, turning up to your interview on time is the biggest sign of your time management, but by working in a bar, you’ll not only have had to show up for work on time but fit your shifts around your university classes and studies. This ability to prioritise tasks – such as revising, taking on extra shifts and socialising – is sought after by recruiters who want a trustworthy team member who can work autonomously without the need for constant supervision.
We’ve put together five of the biggest transferrable skills that you can gain by working in a bar time bar job, but there’s certainly more. Working in a bar can improve your customer awareness, verbal communication and motivation levels, and it can also aid in your sense of community and persuasion levels. So, when you add your bar job to your CV and LinkedIn page, don’t forget about these professional skills that you have gained from pulling pints!