Working in Hotel Entertainment – A threat or an opportunity?

Entertainment, animation, activity guide – the job goes with many titles and some entertainers even call it their dream job. I mean, what’s there not to love? You get to spend your days in the sun, meet new people, play a little music and play sports all day long. It definitely does sound like the BEST JOB IN THE WORLD, doesn’t it?
But is it?

On this article I’m telling you all the pros and cons of working in hotel entertainment that I can think of.
Sometimes it’s a picnic, sometimes it’s shit – but hey, so is every other job too.

This is a good read if you’re thinking about working abroad in hotel entertainment, or
if you’ve been on a holiday and seen those happy preppy animators around the pool and thought “boy, those poor bastards must be lazy or stupid since they do this for a living, can’t they just get a real job!”

On this article I’m revealing some secrets about the most cheerful job in the world!
LET’S GO!

(If you don’t want to read my jabbering, just scroll straight to the pros and cons list lol)

A THREAT OR A POSSIBILITY

SO WHAT DO ENTERTAINERS DO EXACTLY?

Good question!
The most important duty of an entertainer is to keep the hotel guests animated and happy during their holidays by creating all sorts of activities for them to enjoy.

So, basically entertainers focus on doing sports with the guests or keeping the kids entertained, so that the parents can shag or get tanned with a cocktail without someone crying for a change.

You might think that’s an easy gig, and it kinda is.
BUT.
There’s something more to it too, keep reading.

You can choose what type of entertainer you want to be, most companies offer positions as:
Children entertainer
Teenage Club entertainer,
Sports or Fitness entertainer
Chief entertainer

The entertainers walk around the hotel premises wearing freakishly happy smiles and  astoundingly unflattering clothes.
They have to say HELLO to every single guest they pass on their way from the pool to the football field, soaked in sweat, carrying two goals and other equipment, not having had a sip of water in two hours, and if you DARE TO FORGET TO SMILE….EVEN ONCE….. There’s immediately a comment on trip advisor: “The entertainer was depressed and it ruined our holiday”
So, if you want to be an entertainer – start practicing your stage-smile, which has to look natural btw. Because if it doesn’t look natural there’s a comment on trip advisor.
“The entertainer had a fake smile and it ruined our holiday”.

DAYTIME
The days are long. You gotta know this. They long as a lifetime.
Usually the day starts around 10AM, and you have activities to run until 1PM.
After this you have a lunch break. A Siesta, if I may.
Use this time to rest if you can.
!ALERT! SOME ENTERTAINERS DON’T HAVE A BREAK HERE BECAUSE THEY HAVE TO REHEARSE FOR A STUPID SHOW THEY’RE HAVING LATER.
At 3PM the gang is back in business and the daily activities end at 5PM.

The daily activities usually include sports such as water polo, beach volley, french boules,  archery, spinning, stretching, Zumba, football, water volley, rifle shooting, darts, ping pong…the list of possibilities is countless.

For children there’s a kids club.

The more invested and interested the hotel is about the entertainment, the better and wider the program —- and happier the guests.

EVENING
After the daytime duties are finished around 5PM,
unless you live in the hotel, you run to your apartment, take a quick shower and return to the hotel for dinner and nighttime activities around 7PM.
If there are kids in the hotel,  the entertainers organize a MINI DISCO (stupidest crap ever) for them and after you’ve embarrassed yourself in front of 300 people there’s a quiz or karaoke or bingo or some other stupid lame-o  show for the adults.

Some entertainer groups rehearse and organize playback shows for the guests, which I think, is stupid and genius at the same time. With minimum effort and talent, they manage to build at least three different 45 minute shows to perform for the guests every other night. And then you just fool around the stage in a cat costume while you’re being judged by how well you open your mouth to the background music.
And you start calling yourself an actor.

Some entertainment companies send actual singers and dancers to their hotels to do shows, for the guests to hear some live music too. These shows are fun to see and fun to do,(I USED TO BE IN ONE she said humbly) as there’s always something exciting in doing things live. It’s always slightly different and you can even slide some jokes in.

But the truth is, 50% of the guests just hate everything for no reason and there’s nothing you can do about it except SMILE. REMEMBER THE COMMENTS ON TRIPADVISOR!!!

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WHAT MAKES A SUCCESSFUL ENTERTAINER
The best entertainers I’ve seen and met are hyperactive and social and love to talk about themselves or about any kind of nonsense whatsoever.
You don’t even have to be a nice person.  You don’t have to be genuinely interested about people. You just have to GO GO GO GO GO and TALK TALK TALK TALK.
The only thing most hotels care about is the amount of people the entertainers manage to pull in to the activities. So basically you just walk to the guests, ask them how are you – don’t even wait for an answer – and then start promoting your activity with a loud voice using energetic gestures. If you add a funny tone to your speech you’re golden.

Nevertheless, the most important quality you need in this job – is your OWN personality.
You can’t be too shy – that’s for sure – but you get people to like you more if you’re just genuinely you.
For example; I don’t laugh if something is not actually funny. I’ve probably got complaints about that. But why should I be fake?
I’m nice and funny and I have my own personal way of guiding the activities – and to most guests that’s enough.

BUT WHAT IF I’M NOT AS FUNNY AS THE OTHERS OR AS SOCIAL OR AS GOOD AT SPORTS OR….
People like to compare. People compare anything. I like pizza over hamburgers, I like vodka over rum, I like sleeping over running…I like the pretty entertainer instead of the chubby one. But don’t let that bother you! JUST BE YOU DAMMIT.

Figure out who you are as a person, what are your best traits, your best skills – and use those. Not just at this job – but in EVERYTHING.
Man I’m inspirational as hell. I’m gonna start writing life coaching articles next.

If you like meeting new people, are not afraid of long hours, can manage hosting sports activities and night times shows, are even just a tad creative and will not be too homesick after three hours, you will be a good entertainer.
And what’s the best way to find that out? By trying it.

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TO FINISH MY RANT/INFORMATION PIECE,
here’s a list of pros and cons I gathered about the best and worst parts of hotel entertainment.

PROS
1. You get to meet new people every day
2. Tons of activities to run: lots exercising!
3. New friends – wonderful coworkers turn into a family
4. You have to use different languages
5. Learning new languages
6. You’ll become more confident with talking to new people
7. You learn tons of new things and new skills
8. You’ll become more social
9. Using creative thinking
10. You’ll become a stronger performer
11. Confidence to just get up on a stage and grab a microphone
12. You get a nice tan
13. Accommodation and food are (usually) free
14. You learn how hotels run
15. You grow as a person
16. Best case scenario you can decide what type of shows to do
17. You get to spend your free time in a paradise
18. The nightlife usually is AMAZING
19. You can swim every day, in the pool or in the sea
20. It’s a life changing experience

CONS
1. Someone in your team or hotel is usually a crazy lunatic
2. This will eventually bring out the similar traits in you 🙂
3. Some managers and chief entertainers can’t handle stress
4. So they stress you out too
5. Sometimes your most important job of the day is just to play music and to talk to people
6. But most of the people hate all the music in the world and will complain about you
7. You have to smile every single second you’re at the hotel premises
8. The days are super long, free time is super limited
9. If you get sick – your worst teammates will make you feel shitty for being ill and unable to work.
10. The hotel managers only tell you the bad things – never the good things
11. Everything is about money (it can take WEEKS to get something super simple fixed – and in most cases if something gets broken it’s your fault. No matter what has happened – YOU are the responsible)
12. Some hotels have very small range of activities which you can run and you’ll get bored
13. And some hotels don’t want to give anything extra for the entertainment team
14. In some hotels you have to work with old and out of date equipment
15. If your ideas are being killed all the time you’ll get bored
16. You’ll start losing your mind eventually
17. It’s six months of nonstop work and after a while it starts feeling pointless
18. Worst cases you live far from the hotel and have to share a room (sometimes with 4 or more people…imagine the smell and grumpyness)
19. On your day offs you mostly just wanna sleep because you’re so tired from the work
20. Having complaints for the stupidest things (playing music too loud, not smiling etc) makes you feel worthless and stupid

For me the “funniest” thing I’ve learned about  hotel entertainment is the amount of stress people manage to build over it and over the entertainers.
It’s supposed to be A FUN JOB. Entertainers are supposed to bring JOY to the guests.
The program should be EXCITING and the entertainment group should be UPLIFTING in order to give the guests FANTASTIC EXPERIENCES.

Still, like I mentioned on the cons section, some managers and chiefs want to bring their employees down. Everything is about money. Everything is about the score.
They think that by screaming and expressing how nothing is good enough the entertainers get magically super motivated into doing extraordinarily amazing job.

BUT luckily, most entertainers make the most out of their time abroad despite of the stress other people try to set on their shoulders. And that’s how it should be.
IT’S A LOVELY LOVELY JOB which will lead you to amazing experiences and opportunities if you just keep your eyes open and stay focused.

Have you worked in hotel entertainment or planning to work as an entertainer? What are your thoughts? Care to share your experiences?

Until next time! xoxo


One thought on “Working in Hotel Entertainment – A threat or an opportunity?

  1. daaamn, this article is perfect, I was working as sport entertainer but I had no team, only 1 kids entertainer and 1 entertainer team manager. looks cool from the first sign, but let’s not be hasty. I had to do all sport activities all alone, some kids activities, mostly that crappy mini disco and ALL ALONE for all freaking season. and all other things too, like participation in evening events, mostly in all of them, talking to hotel guests, etc. and yes, I was screamed to everything, I didn’t smiled, I didn’t do this properly, I didn’t do that, bla bla bla, it was totally something, doing everything and more, and in the same time manager was screaming to me that I don’t do anything. magic is real! well, as magic happened, I ended that season and had an achievement for my self that I did it. next year I had other plans but shit happens too, so I went to second season but had to flee from there after 1,5 months because it was much worse than it was previous year. this hotel ruined all my will to work as entertainer, I still have want to vomit from that job but still I haven’t tried to work in a team, I don’t know how it is, when I was alone it was hard to entertain guests when they don’t want anything + there was some things that I see as totally useless. specially “boccia”. most useless game. and the problem was that I was alone and everyday I felt like an total idiot. maybe have some info about in detail comparison about working alone and in a team? this could decide what I should do this year.

    oh, and one thing!
    NEVER WORK THROUGH “LIFE ANIMAZIONE” agency, they are worst, they pay less than anybody and don’t like to pay salaries at all.

    Like

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