Hiring Tasting Room Superstars

Most winery tasting rooms are in the process of staffing up for the high season. Now is the time to carefully consider how to build out a superstar team.

First consider your winery’s unique culture. What fits your brand?  Do your team members need to have a formal, elegant demeanor? Or should they be approachable, flexible and folksy?  Do they need to juggle large crowds? The perfect employee would be very different for each of these scenarios. Having a clear picture of your specific cultural needs will help you find the right employees who will enjoy and excel in the job.

Next, consider their qualifications from three additional angles: knowledge, skills, and behavioral traits. While certain knowledge can be taught and skills can be practiced, basic traits like work pace, customer service heart, facility with details, curiosity and warmth are part of a person’s natural behavior profile and aren’t easily changed. Make sure you know the difference for your position.

Research shows that the most successful tasting room managers exhibit the following behavioral traits:

  • Move at a rapid pace with sense of priority & urgency
  • Delegate responsibility with close follow-up
  • Comfortable with numbers but are more team / people oriented than analytical
  • Are persuasive & firm, yet supportive & diplomatic

So what behavioral traits do you need your front-line team members to have?

Taking the time to understand the requirements of your position – going beyond required knowledge and skills to include both cultural fit and desired behavior style – will ultimately pay off in the form of engaged, successful employees, happier customers and of course more DTC sales.