Every bartender working behind the bar has a story on how they found themselves in this career. And for some, they are doing the job because it was the only thing they were able to find doing while many others are in this line of work because they have genuine interest and passion for bartending. If you have a passion for working as a bartender, you may be doing your job diligently while bearing in mind that you are in it for the long haul. And if you will have a life long career in bartending, you do not want to kick off your career the wrong way. We intend to point you in the right directions on how not to do it the wrong way. With some great tips that we will be sharing in this article, you can learn how to bartend for a lifetime career in the hospitality industry.

Attend Bartending School

Every great bartender has a beginning. Whether it is a formal bartending school or an informal setting such as gaining experience by working as a waiter, hostess or bar-back, learning is the first step to becoming a bartender. Check for accredited bartending school and enroll in one.

Apply for Job Openings

After learning, you should get a job at an establishment that has a bar, and when you land a bartending job, you should continue to aim for better opportunities. You are working in a transient industry where people do not stay stuck at a job for years unending. When looking for your first bartending job, you don’t have to look for the perfect job. Start anywhere and overtime as you gain more experience, you can switch to a better job position.
Maybe you have a vision for yourself over the next ten years; you do not have to actualize that vision right away. Grab any bartending job opportunity that comes your way, and from there you can climb up the career ladder. For example, maybe the job opening you have is one that you have to spend thirty minutes on the road to get there, and you would prefer one that is closer to your home. Or perhaps, the bar that is willing to employ you only plays country music but you prefer hip hop. We encourage you to start from somewhere and see how it goes from there. You can never know the best bartending job for you until you start a job as a bartender.

While you are submitting applications and resumes to those fancy establishments, consider the Mexican place on your street. Remember that you need a place to get your career started and not necessarily somewhere, you will have to work for years. It may not be your ideal place to work, but it would be a lot easier to get employed there because not many people are applying to those establishments.

Get a better bartending job.

So you have worked as a bartender for about six months now. It sure feels good making money while doing something as fun as bartending, doesn’t it? It is time to evaluate your job. Do you like it? What do you love about it? Do you love night shifts or day shifts? Do you enjoy serving only drinks or food too? Do you love a fully-packed bustling bar? Or you prefer the slow-paced bar where you can socialize and engage patrons in conversations? Anything you love or do not like about bartending, this is the time that you should have noted them. You now know what you want in a bartending job, and you can start looking at how you can get a job that satisfies these requirements. However, DO NOT LEAVE YOUR CURRENT JOB! You can search for another job while still employed at your current job. You only have to make sure your prospects are higher and better than the current job position you occupy. It also does not have to be the ultimate dream job that you have in mind; it could be an upgrade of your current job.

While searching for another job, you should also not ignore the power of networking. When you meet people who are well-vested in the hospitality industry, talk to them, present yourself to them, and discuss opportunities for you. The best jobs are usually not public knowledge. These positions are mostly filled by referrals; so, put the word out that you need a job. You could get surprised that one of your patrons has a best friend whose uncle has a hotel or a bigger establishment than the one you currently work. Also, no matter how good you are at the job, stay humble. If you are networking with more experienced and bigger bartenders, don’t throw your weight around by telling them how you are the next best thing in the world and the best bartender that has graced the earth. Network humbly and opportunities will open up to you.

Study further on your favorite part of bartending.

If you want to make more money as a bartender, you must be ready to invest in yourself to acquire more valuable knowledge. Attend seminars, hospitality industry events, and take networking seriously. Bartenders who are serious about their craft attend these events, and you can use the opportunity to better yourself as well. Pick a part of bartending that you love the most and study more about it. If you love making cocktails, attend craft cocktail scenes, and premium cocktail events. If you enjoy making wines, visit wineries, and attend wine tasting events.

In conclusion, bartending for a lifetime career in the hospitality industry takes some efforts on your part, and it all boils down to continuous learning. A reputable and credible bartending school is an excellent place to start, but once you land a job as a bartender, you need to invest some time on your own to become better.


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