Time out!

By J&C Team

Want to have fun at work? here are five reasons to join the leisure industry!

Doing things you love is what life is all about, and the leisure industry is one area where your customers should be up for a good time. Here are some reasons why it may be a wise career choice for you.

1. It’s growing – fast!

Spending on leisure in the UK has grown at a faster pace than total consumer expenditure. The industry is now worth £117bn in revenue, accounting for 7.4% of GDP in 2014, and is growing at nearly twice the pace of the retail sector. 

Leisure activities are split into two groups: occasional activities include going to the cinema, theatre, theme parks and bowling as well as travel; habitual activities include betting and gaming, watching TV, playing video games, listening to music.1

2. The roles are varied

The leisure industry provides an exciting, positive, customer-facing working environment, whether you’re working in a cinema, bowling alley, indoor rock-climbing centre or laser tag centre. The roles are varied and require interaction with customers of all ages.

The roles on offer are too numerous to list but include operating rides, working in the catering department, being part of the safety and security team, managing events or being involved in ticketing and maintenance.

3. It’s open to all

The leisure industry employs people at every level, and you don’t necessarily need a degree, particularly for entry-level positions. However, there may be more opportunities to progress if you have a relevant qualification in the hospitality, leisure and tourism sector.

You can opt for a diploma or foundation degree, or something higher such as an undergraduate or master’s degree. Other entry routes include apprenticeships, BTECs and NVQs in leisure and tourism subjects, which allow you to study the industry and get hands-on experience.

4. There’s flexibility

Many employees in the leisure sector are hired on seasonal contracts or asked to work irregular and sometimes long or unsociable hours, including weekends. There are good opportunities to travel or live away from home.

Starting salaries tend to be relatively low, but they can vary greatly depending on the size and location of company you work for, and whether the organisation is owned privately or by the local authority. Progression up the career ladder can also be fairly quick.

5. You can move up

With experience and ability, you can move into management roles. You’ll need to be enthusiastic, a good team leader and have commercial awareness and problem-solving skills.

As a manager, you’ll be responsible for the day-to-day running of the venue including recruiting and training staff, managing budgets, making sure health and safety guidelines are adhered to and maintaining customer service standards. You will be the one who deals with customers if there are complaints or problems, so you’ll also need to have excellent communication skills and the ability to diffuse tricky situations.