In Australia, it is really common for university students to work in hospitality and retail. However in China, most of university students focus more on study and doing professional internship.
For a lot of international students coming from developing countries, the living expense here is very high. So they start working part-time to make some money and cover their living expenses. The hospitality and retail industry is where most international students choose to work.
I tried my luck to find a job just by dropping my resume to local cafes and was called for training after several days. Having no experience in hospitality before, let alone making coffee, I started my job by taking coffees to customers. Watching my co-worker, Sarah, making coffee, I started trying to make different kinds of coffee as well. Through continuing practice, I can pretty much make all kinds of coffee after 2 weeks. Yes! Practice makes perfect.
Though it’s rewarding to make customers happy, challenges are always there in hospitality. Customers are always first even if sometimes you are sick and don’t really want to talk. How to immediately fix a mistake when you do something wrong is not that simple. And starting a conversation with customers always makes me, an introvert, feel nervous.
All in all, I learnt a lot by working in hospitality. My confidence and communication skills definitely improved out of it. I can say it’s always a good experience to do something different in another country!