When you choose to take a temporary position in the hospitality and catering industry, managing your further study alongside your job is inevitably going to be important.
Whilst you’re fully aware of the long-term career benefits of a qualification, juggling your often-flexible work commitments - occasionally on very short notice – alongside your study sessions is vital to master. As an employee it is crucial to take certain measures so the working relationship between yourself and your manager is mutually beneficial.
At Search recruitment agency, we have compiled six different ways to help you balance temporary work with your studies so that neither aspect begins to eclipse the other.
1. Use a calendar planner:
Use a mobile/physical diary or calendar to keep track of work shifts and important dates. This should allow you to plan your educational studies around your contracted working hours and lower the chances of short notice absences or disgruntlement over a lack of time.
2. “No surprises”
Build an open and honest relationship with your employer. Let them know your essential days needed to prepare for deadlines or exams with plenty of notice and they will do the same for high value working days. Make sure these are planned out far ahead of time to avoid any schedule clashes and confrontations.
3. Mingle with company’s perm staff:
Making friends with your work colleagues will naturally develop a greater knowledge of the company's culture allowing you a chance to incorporate this into your work. It also means that working should be a more enjoyable experience which will lead to a more effective studying environment later in the day. Returning home to more work feeling either stressed or isolated after your paid work will almost certainly have a negative impact on your studying.
4. Set clear goals and targets:
Establish early on what you can take away from working with a company and lay down some achievable targets for you to aspire to achieve. These can be monetary bonuses, good references for CVs or even the chance for working with the company permanently.
Setting goals in both your working environments means it’s naturally easier to keep your fire and drive alive throughout the day. This will lead you to feeling more engaged and better about your overall progress for a longer period of time.
5. Quality not quantity
Think about how you spend time over the course of the day and identify where there may be some free time for study. Your daily commutes, breaks at work or waiting for appointments are all viable options to sneak in extra studying time.
Resist the temptation to join others for lunch and find somewhere quiet to revise. Short, focused study sessions can be very effective. Always have study material readily available; a video blog to watch, downloaded documents or even a couple of cue cards to memorise.
6. Look after yourself
Occasionally managing two sometimes stressful activities can be exhausting. Resist the urges to rely on counter productive late night study sessions or using caffeine to keep you awake, it will disrupt your sleep and lead to fatigue the next day. Eat well, get plenty of rest and plan ahead for exams. Remember to talk to your boss if you feel overwhelmed as they might be able to reshuffle your schedule too.
Search Consultancy is a specialist in sourcing and placing a variety of positions within the hospitality and catering sector including chefs, waiters and caretakers. We also pride ourselves on guiding our candidates through some of the most important issues surrounding the industry. If you have any questions please contact a member of the Search Hospitality & Catering team in your nearest England office.
By Emma Tugwell