Are You Ready to Take an Alcohol Awareness Exam?

TAM ExamRead on for tips on how you can prepare for a proctored exam.

The State of Nevada’s Commission on Postsecondary Education requires that students pass a supervised exam with a 75% or better before being issued an Alcohol Education Card. What does that mean for you? If you complete your TAM® training online you must physically go to the provider’s approved school location to take a proctored exam after finishing the online training. If you opted to complete the course in a classroom setting you will take a test immediately following the training session.

Are you nervous about taking and passing a test? Fear not! TAM® of Nevada has been helping students prepare for their exams for over 25 years. Before you come in to our official training to obtain your TAM® Card, read on for more tips on making sure you’re prepared to pass with flying colors. Rest assured the training you’ve completed with TAM® will leave you prepared to ace your exam, and excel at practicing safe beverage service techniques on the job.

How long is the exam? The exam is 25 questions. It takes approximately 15 minutes for you to take your exam and have your picture taken for your TAM® Card. Most students find the test to be a breeze after participating in TAM® training; all questions are a review of the material you covered during the course.

Is there a Practice Test? You bet! Students who elect to complete TAM® Card online training will take a practice test at the end of their online training. This is one of the best ways to prepare for your proctored exam; you’ll get an idea of the types of questions that will appear on your final exam and have the chance to complete a final review before taking the real thing. If you’re planning to wait a few days to take your proctored exam, you can refresh your memory on the material covered by going through the practice test before leaving for our training center.

What if I take a classroom course? Traditional classroom training will leave you equally prepared for your test as the online option. Feel free to take notes and ask questions during the class. Our instructors are there to help and make sure you’re comfortable with all of the material. They love being able to answer questions and discuss the particulars of safe beverage service with students!

Relax! Take a deep breath and focus on the questions. You’ll do great!

What other ways do you like to prepare before taking an exam?

Resources

Nevada Commission on Postsecondary Education

© 2011 National Hospitality Institute®, TAM® of Nevada

Tending Bar… With a Little Flair!

Flair bartenderLearn a new bartending skill and stand out from the pack.

There are a lot of things that go into a great bartender: a winning personality, an attention to detail, and a dedication to public safety, and the legal and moral issues of serving alcoholic beverages. Think you might be right for the job? To get a leg up on the competition, being able to entertain patrons with flair bartending techniques can be the cherry on top. And the best part? A flair bartender can do pretty well for themselves, especially if they can entertain while serving. A flair bartender will draw in more customers, making more money for the bar, and themselves.

Flair bartenders are known for using bar tools and liquor bottles as props to entertain while they are mixing drinks. It can be quite a sight to see someone juggling liquor bottles, mixing drinks behind their backs, carefully setting fire to mixed drinks, and more. Las Vegas is home to some of the best flair bartenders in the country, and boasts several bars and clubs that showcase their talents. If you’re considering a career as a flair bartender, Las Vegas is the place to be. Make sure to check out Vegas.com’s article, “Behind the Scenes: Flair Bartending in Vegas,” for a video interview with Rock & Rita’s flair bartender Anthony Pullen.

So you’re ready to become a flair bartender? TAM® of Nevada has some tips on how you can get started:

  1. Get educated on bartending techniques. Flair bartending requires a solid working knowledge of bartending skills, plus lots of practice, practice, practice! Before you start juggling liquor bottles, it’s important to learn how to mix drinks, and build up your bartending know-how of tips and techniques. It won’t matter how well you can entertain if you don’t know how to make a martini. Consider attending a bartending school if you haven’t already, there are several reputable establishments in Southern Nevada. Some of these locations also offer flair training, so be sure to ask for details of what their programs offer when you’re checking credentials. You can also get lots of practical education tending a bar and learning the ropes from other traditional, and flair bartenders.
  2. Obtain your TAM® Card. All hospitality professionals in Southern Nevada are required to obtain their alcohol education card prior to working at a location where they’ll be selling and serving alcoholic beverages. The Techniques of Alcohol Management® will give you the skills and knowledge you need to serve responsibly.
  3. Practice makes perfect. Every day at work you’ll have the chance to handle bottles and shakers, so practice spinning shakers in your hand and doing simple tricks when you have some downtime. Starting with the basics and working your way up to more difficult tricks, you’ll begin to feel comfortable with your props and impress your guests at the same time. You can also watch plenty of flair training videos online for tips and tricks to learning basic flair bartending moves. A great resource is TAM of Nevada’s YouTube channel; we’re always adding our favorite flair bartending videos and tutorials. Another tip? Try practicing at home with plastic bottles until you get the hang of things – you will inevitably drop some bottles, and nothing will put a damper on your day faster than a mess of shattered glass to clean up.

Flair bartending is not a skill one will learn easily or overnight, but it can be done! For more information on flair bartending news, training and industry information, and a place to network with other bar professionals, you can always check out the Flair Bartenders’ Association.

Our most important advice of all of all? Remember to have fun! What is the best advice you would give to someone looking to start a career as a flair bartender?

Resources

© 2011 National Hospitality Institute®, TAM® of Nevada

Come Prepared and Ace Your Next Hospitality Industry Job Interview

So, you’ve obtained your TAM® Card and Health Card, you’ve gone scouting for a job, and now you’ve got an interview lined up… What’s next? Searching for hospitality industry jobs in a down economy can be challenging and stressful too. It’s important to remember that landing an interview is only the first step; now you have to impress hiring managers with your winning personality, great attitude and industry know-how. Are you prepared to put your best foot forward and land your dream job?

A great way to prepare for your interview is to think about common questions that are likely to be asked, and how you’ll respond. Think of it like a practice test. Wouldn’t you want to review what’s going to be on your quiz before you sit down to take it? Hospitality Job Site features a great article with common questions that hiring managers like to ask job candidates in the hospitality and nightlife industry. You can read the article titled, “Common Interview Questions,” and use that as a starting point for your preparations. Still feel like you’re not quite ready? Consider asking a friend to give you a mock interview. You can practice answering questions and gain helpful feedback about your answers and your demeanor.

When you get to your interview remember to:

  1. Arrive on time. Allow yourself extra time to get to the interview just in case, and be prepared to fill out a formal application once you arrive. By arriving a few minutes early, you’ll be ready to meet with a hiring manager at the scheduled time, and won’t keep them waiting while you finish paperwork.
  2. Be confident. Smile and sit up straight. Be sure to project a positive attitude.
  3. Thank the interviewer for their time. Be sure you leave on the same positive note you came in on.

You should now be well on your way to acing your next interview. For more tips to making the most of your job search, check out our blog post, “You’re Hired! Landing a Job in the Hospitality Industry.”

What tips have you received for making a great impression in an interview?

Resources

Health Cards – Southern Nevada Health District

Common Interview Questions – Hospitality Job Site

© 2011 National Hospitality Institute®, TAM® of Nevada

 

Visit TAM® of Nevada on YouTube

Here at TAM® of Nevada, we try to stay on top of what’s happening in the hospitality and beverage service industry, and also all of the great things happening in Las Vegas. You can read more about how we stay connected with industry professionals and alcohol education students by reading our blog, “Want to Stay Up-to-Date on Alcohol Awareness? Join Us Socially!

Have you visited TAM® of Nevada’s YouTube channel yet? We often hear from our peers that they not only learned a lot from their alcohol awareness training, they enjoy the additional tips, tricks, news and videos we share socially. Just starting out as a bartender or server in Las Vegas? Sometimes the best way to learn how to do something new is by watching others. Be sure to check out our YouTube channel to see some of our favorite videos from several sources showcasing tutorials on how to make popular alcoholic drinks, bartending tips and tricks, nightlife industry news and more. Want a sneak preview? Check out this quick video from Imbibe Magazine showing the differences in shaking vs. stirring cocktails. You can watch this video and many others by visiting our YouTube channel here.

How do you like to stay connected to companies and brands important to you? What type of content would you like to see from TAM® of Nevada in the future?

Resources

© 2011 National Hospitality Institute®, TAM® of Nevada