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Getting Started as a Personal Concierge

By Charles Hopkins Published 04/20/2006 | Entrepreneur
The word concierge denotes two meanings, says Dictionary.com. One, from hotel terminology, is a staff member who assists guests or residents, as by handling the storage of luggage, taking and delivering messages, and making reservations for tours. The other, derived from French culture, is a person who lives in an apartment house, attends the entrance, and serves as a janitor.

While there is no formal definition of the word yet in the dictionaries for personal concierge, on the contrary, this profession is a booming business. The boom is brought about by a fast-paced lifestyle which leaves hardly any room for busy professionals nowadays to sort out their bills, schedule their activities (both personal and business), or book their vacations.

A personal concierge is being recognized as a legitimate profession. Laura Tiffany, in an article entitled "How to be a Personal Concierge", which appears at Entrepreneur.com, discloses that the number of personal concierges is growing fast. She adds: Although it's no secret that the personal concierge field is booming, hard numbers are difficult to come by. The National Concierge Association, a Chicago-based group that was founded in the late 1990s as a networking and resource organization for both personal and hotel concierges, doesn't yet track numbers or statistics pertaining to the industry. Cynthia A., a former hotel concierge who runs her own personal concierge business in San Diego, estimates there are a few hundred personal concierges throughout the United States.

How to get started as a personal concierge? Consider this as an example of a job description: "Getting seats to a sporting event, reserving a table at a top restaurant, or sending a birthday present. Able and willing to go above and beyond the everyday. Always ready to go the extra mile with your employer."

While personal concierges are in demand in the U.S., Britain is starting to catch up. If you live in any of these two countries, you can start approaching companies offering such opportunities. Ask these employers if they are hiring or willing to train you as a personal concierge.

Of course, not everyone is fitted for the job of a personal concierge. Individuals who like to organize, who enjoy assisting others, and who dont get bored researching detailed information are encouraged to try out for this job. Skill and experience with events management is likewise imperative to the job of a personal concierge. If you possess all these traits but you are in a different profession at this time, its the best time of the year to take the plunge. Youll probably thank yourself over and over for taking the chance!

People who have worked as an administrative assistant or even an executive assistant are predisposed to the job of a personal concierge. If youre coming from this profession, you might initially find running your own business for the first time rather jolting. But remember, if youve been able to proofread or otherwise improve your boss marketing plan or business proposal, whats keeping you from striking out on your own? function SubmitRating(btn) { ratingchecked = false; if (btn.form.aRating0.checked) ratingchecked = true; if (btn.form.aRating1.checked) ratingchecked = true; if (btn.form.aRating2.checked) ratingchecked = true; if (btn.form.aRating3.checked) ratingchecked = true; if (btn.form.aRating4.checked) ratingchecked = true; if (ratingchecked) { btn.form.btnRating.value=btn.value; btn.form.submit(); } else { alert("Be sure a rating value has been selected to continue."); } }