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How do I qualify to work as a Barista?

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Hello,

I am curious about getting a part-time job working as a Barista but my only concern is that I have never worked in a coffee shop before. What kind of skills would I need to be considered for this position if I were to apply? And how could I learn them?

Appreciate any feedback you could give me.
#part-time #barista #communication-skills #career-details #personal-development

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Joseph A.’s Answer

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Hi Timothy, As others have said, most coffee shops will train you on what are considered 'hard skills' that include knowing the selection of menu items, preparation of food and beverages, and cashiering, among other tasks. What most retailers desire in candidates are considered 'soft skills.' Soft skills include having a friendly demeanor, a positive attitude, an ability to interact effectively with others, and having a customer service mindset. In other words, good social skills. These skills are difficult to demonstrate if you're applying for jobs online. In the olden days when we had to go directly to an employer to complete an application, these soft skills were easier to demonstrate as one asked for an application and tried to chat up other employees or a prospective supervisor.

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Joe’s Answer

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If you are willing to learn, and the company is willing to train, you could have zero experience. These are normally entry level/starter jobs. Most companies will look for the following qualities over someone with some experience. Ensure you can illustrate some of these qualities and you will find many doors will open for you:

1. Communication Skills: The ability to communicate clearly and effectively in many mediums: by email, verbally, with lists and phone messages, on the phone, and with body language. Communication also includes listening skills and the ability to follow directions and provide feedback.

2. Honesty: Employers want accurate and timely information regarding their business and their employees. Made a mistake? Don’t cover it up, admit it, and learn not to do it again.

3. Technical Competency: Most positions require certain skills that are advertised on the Job Posting. If you are hired to perform certain tasks then you should have the skills. Improving your skills along the way is also expected.

4. Work Ethic: Be at work on time, do what you were hired to do, meet targets and deadlines and work to the best of your ability. What more could an employer ask?

5. Flexibility: Employers and their employees need to react quickly to changing business conditions. Employers need employees who can change gears and adapt as required.

6. Determination and Persistence: Managers will give employees challenging goals but generally they are achievable. The key is to be able to work hard and keep moving forward when you encounter obstacles.

7. Ability to Work in Harmony with Co-Workers: Employers and managers like to have people working with them and for them who can get along with their colleagues and who can work with others effectively in different circumstances.

8. Eager and Willing to Add to Their Knowledge Base and Skills: As businesses change, there is often a need to find out new information, expand knowledge and explore new ways of doing things. People with an interest in learning, and a willingness to pass it on to others, become invaluable.

9. Problem-Solving Skills: Companies are looking for people who are motivated to take on challenges with minimal direction. Employees should see when something needs to be done and react accordingly.

10. Loyalty: Employers want and need to be able to trust their employees to work professionally to meet the employer’s best interests. Employers do not want to hire people who require close scrutiny or who cannot be trusted to represent the company in public.
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Vandana’s Answer

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Hello Timothy,

Steve, Jessica and Joseph have elaborated on the required skills extremely well. You may also find the following link useful, for building a concrete goal plan toward learning each of the listed skills:
https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/35-3022.01

Daily, start running in your mind the scenarios how you'd demonstrate these skills, so that you are prepared to handle any given situation in your role as a Barista.

Have a great career!

Vandana
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Jessica’s Answer

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Most entry level jobs will train you and show you how to use their machines. I worked as a Barista and did not have any direct experience prior to. I would think the main thing you would need to have would be customer service/people skills! When you get the interview, make sure to do research on the company and the product they sell. Talking about this will show you care about the company and have an interest in pursuing it further. Good luck!

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Steve’s Answer

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They will probably train you. But, if you want to impress them, read up on coffee selection, tasting process, industry, brewing methods, and types of drinks. If they call you in for an interview, talk passionately about what you know. You'll stand out from most applicants!

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