Thinking About Management?
Looking At Your Management Competencies Scores…
We talked to tourism leaders and employees about what it takes to enjoy and succeed in a management career. Using their responses and psychological testing research, we developed the Management Competency Questionnaire. This questionnaire that you just filled out and scored focuses on key factors, like customer service, that are important in tourism management. Every factor won’t be important in every management job. However, if you are going to grow in the field as a whole, you will want to become interested and skilled in each factor.
Remember, this is just one, short test. You will want to consider all of your other skills and experience when you make your career decisions.
In the following screen, you will be looking at your scores in each of these areas. If you score high, it means that this is already an area that is a priority for you. If you score lower, it does not mean that you cannot work in tourism management or that you can’t work to move your score higher. There may, for example, be certain activities that you are somewhat able to do, but that you don’t really like to do. A lower score just means that if you are committed to a tourism management, this is an area in which you will want to stay motivated, develop and learn.
You may also notice that as you get experience in the sector, your management interests will change. Try this questionnaire again one or two years from now.
High (Above 4)
Medium (3 to 4)
Area for Development (Below 3)
Too many people seem to find themselves in management by fluke or just because it seemed like the right thing to do. It is important, however, that you have really thought about what it takes to be a manager and whether or not that appeals to you. People who really enjoy their management jobs, tend to have a real drive to be in charge, to be leaders. They like the idea of being the leader and of giving people advice. Career success is important to them and they don’t mind taking responsibility for difficult decisions. How was your Leadership Drive score?
If your score shows this as an area for development, you will want to think carefully about a management career and what you will get out of it. Write down the pros and cons of management. Ask yourself if you are willing to spend less time actually doing hands-on tasks and more time supervising others.
Tourism mangers have to be particularly skilled in customer service. They have to model good service for their employees. They are also setting policies and dealing with customer service problems. How was your Customer Orientation score?
If it was medium or an area for development, you will always want to step back and consider the situation from the customer’s perspective. You will also benefit from some customer service training.
Some people like to specialize in a specific kind of work and to become experts in their fields. Tourism managers, however, have to show a broad interest in their organization as a whole. They have to learn as much as they can about the many jobs of their employees. They have to learn about how the business runs. How was your Management Interests score?
Successful managers have to have a strong interest in understanding and helping others. Employees rely on them for support and direction. How was your Empathy score?
If it was high, you are likely interested in understanding why people act the way they do. You will try to be diplomatic and tactful as a manager.
Managers are often called in to resolve conflicts between employees or with customers. They need to take action to help people solve their problems. How was your Conflict Diffusion score?
If your score is medium, you might want to develop your conflict resolution skills through training or reading. You can also ask someone you know well how they think you deal with conflict.
Tourism managers often have to convince people of things. They might have to get employees enthusiastic about an idea. They might want to urge a customer to try a new product. How was your Persuasion score?
If your score shows as an area for development, you might also benefit from courses or books on selling.
Human Resource Orientation
Tourism managers are helping their employees develop. They are often teaching them new skills. They make decisions about who to hire and, at unfortunate times, who to fire. Do these human resource activities interest you? How was your Human Resource Orientation score?
If it was medium or an area for development, you will want to see if the thought of helping employees with their careers becomes more appealing as you get more experience.
Successful managers cannot afford to think only about their own tasks and how to get them done. They must pass work onto others and encourage them to get it done. They have to be willing to let employees do some work that they know they could do quicker on their own. They encourage employees to work together as a team. How was your Team Empowerment score?
If your score is medium, you will want to make sure that you are passing work down and that you aren’t discouraging employees.
Tourism managers have to be particularly good communicators. They have to be able to get their point across to different types of employees and customers. They do not want to be misunderstood. They often have to speak up at meetings or groups. How was your Management Communication score?
If your score is medium or an area for development, you can start to improve your communication skills through practice. Look for situations where you can practice speaking in public. Volunteer to speak at meetings. Every time someone misunderstands you, think about why they misunderstood and how you could communicate what you said more clearly.
Successful tourism managers will spend a great deal of time analyzing and planning for the future. They have to try and understand, for instance, what customers will be looking for five years from now, so they can start detailed planning now. How was your Strategic Planning score?
If it is medium or an area for development, you may want to practice such planning activities to see how you enjoy them. In your next job, try setting future goals and anticipating problems you might face in five years. Ask yourself if this is a kind of activity you would like to be doing in the future?
The ability to be flexible – to adapt to change and variety – is really important in the tourism sector. When you are dealing with people, you cannot predict what they will need and want. Things are constantly changing in the tourism sector – surprises are common. Industry leaders are also looking for employees who will be able to adapt to many different tasks and jobs.
If it is high, you enjoy changing situations and variety. You will likely enjoy adapting to the rapid pace of the tourism environment.
Tourism managers are often asked to come up with new ideas and create new programs. This may involve taking risks and suggesting ideas that some people may find unusual or unlikely. Is this something you would enjoy doing? What was your Innovation score?
If your score was medium, you may sometimes feel nervous about trying new things. “What if it doesn’t work?” you might ask. “What if it does?!” Try coming up with new ideas for doing things – even around your house. You may surprise yourself with your creativity!
Tourism managers often have to make difficult or unpopular decisions. They may also have to make high impact decisions in a very short time. How was your Decision-Making score?
Tourism managers not only have to adapt to change. They also have to help their employees work through any anxieties they might have about change. How do you feel about change? How was your Change Management score?
If your score is medium or an area for development, you might want to think about what bothers you about change. Write down your four main worries associated with any change. Go to someone who is in the know – like your boss – and ask him or her about your concerns. He or she might have a lot of the answers to your questions. As you get used to change, each new situation will likely seem less frightening!
Tourism managers often do many things at once. They may be working in high pressure or deadline situations. They may face criticism from their employees or their own boss. It is helpful if they are resilient – if they can put up with demanding situations without becoming too stressed. How was your Resilience score?
If your score is medium or an area for development, you will want to work at trying not to let pressure and criticism affect your health. Some criticism can be interpreted as a good suggestion. Realize that some people criticize just because they feel bad about themselves. If you are in a time-crunch situation, take the time to write down a list of your tasks and when you plan to do them. This helps keeps you on track.