The hospitality and tourism industry is the largest and fastest growing industry in the world. One of the most exciting aspects of this industry is that it is made up of so many different professions.

As diverse as the hospitality industry is, there are some powerful and common dynamics, which include the delivery of services and products and the customer- guest impressions of them. Whether an employee is in direct contact with a guest or customer (front of the house) or performing duties behind the scenes (back of the house), the profound and most challenging reality of working in this industry is that hospitality employees have the ability to affect the human experience by creating powerful impressions-even brief moments of truth-which may last a lifetime.

The hotel business provides job opportunities to many associates who help make reservations, greet, assist, and serve guests in hospitality operations of varied sizes and in locations all over the world.

The restaurant business is also a vital piece of the travel and tourism umbrella for many reasons. People go to restaurants to fulfill diverse needs and wants. Eating is a biological need that restaurants serve; however restaurants and the people who work in them fulfill numerous other human desires, such as the need for socialization and to be entertained.

In managed services, foodservices are provided for airlines, military facilities, schools, colleges and universities, health care operations, and business and industry. These foodservice operations have the dual challenge of meeting the needs and wants of the guests and the client (i.e., the institution itself). The employees who are part of these enterprises have responsibilities very much like those of other restaurant operations. The quality of food products delivered in an airline, for example, may be the key to winning customers back in the future and creating positive word of mouth advertising that attracts new customers.

As with food products, the creation and delivery systems for beverage products are vital components of the hospitality industry. These systems involve many people that consumers rarely see.

These individuals behind the scenes have diverse and crucial responsibilities so that the consumers, whether in a resort, office, hospital, college, or roadside snack bar, have the quality of products when they need and want them.