Being an SQ girl may be a childhood dream for many, and it may look easy and glamorous, but it is a job that requires more than a pretty face and a great smile.
The interview process may be daunting, but passing the interview is just the first step. Unless you’ve been a cabin crew in your career, no other jobs can quite prepare you for the working environment and lifestyle of SQ girls. You might not feel like you’re cut out for the job when you first start out, but here’s a tip: as long as you understand what is required of you and work on it, it will be easier for you to get comfortable with flying and enjoy the work faster.
Need more concrete advice? Here are six qualities SQ girls should have, based on my observations when I was an SQ girl.
Good at time management
Crew have to complete different duties within allocated time-frames on-board, so as a crew member, you have to be able to juggle multiple things at the same time to be able to finish your duties on time. You will also need to know how to handle passenger requests during busy periods like meal services and get back to them at a later time, instead of rushing to fulfil every request at the expense of your current work. When you have a few things to do at the same time, learning how to prioritise your tasks is crucial, especially when you have to complete them within a short period of time.
Can work well in a team
Every crew has their specific duties to perform on-board and working well with your colleagues is key in ensuring that service on the flight is smooth. Those who are used to being one-man shows or are always quiet must learn to speak up and communicate with the other crew so that everyone knows what has been done or has not been done. This prevents others from doing double work or finding out something has not been done until the last minute. If someone is falling behind or is overwhelmed and needs help with their duties, you should also try to help out so that all the work can be finished on time.
Possesses good situational awareness
SIA is well-known for its hospitality and high level of customer service. One way crew do this is by strengthening their situational awareness. One of the first things we are told to do on-board is to keep our eyes open whenever we are walking down the aisle of the cabin. This is to ensure that we don’t miss out any passenger requests or be able to take the initiative to offer help to anyone who looks like they need assistance, such as someone who is fiddling with the entertainment system handheld device. Good situation awareness also helps you to work better with your fellow crew so that you can offer help when you know that they need it.
Able to keep your emotions in-check
If you are just starting out as a cabin crew, you have to be prepared to handle being corrected about your work by your seniors frequently. Those who are not used to being corrected may find it hard to accept the criticism at first and feel upset. Also, you may meet difficult passengers who give you a hard time and affect your mood. However, as you are ultimately still in the business of providing a service, you cannot let negative emotions show on your face and give a “black” face. Learn to not take things personally and you will know that you have achieved it when you are able to keep smiling no matter what is being said to you.
If you are someone who is habitually late for appointments even if it’s just for five minutes, you will definitely have to change this habit as a cabin crew. Time is of the essence when it comes to flights at the airport, so it is no wonder that it is essential for cabin crew to always be early or on-time. Besides having to be punctual when reporting for work in Singapore or overseas, crew also cannot be tardy even if they are going back to the training centre for a one-day training course.
Able to be independent
Let’s face it, the life of a cabin crew can be quite lonely. You travel overseas with a different group of people each time, and when you are back in Singapore, it might be difficult to meet up with friends who have regular working hours. You have to get used to sleeping in different hotel rooms by alone and be fine with heading out alone in a foreign country if you didn’t manage to make plans with any of the other crew or just don’t feel like socializing. Spending time by yourself can be enjoyable as you can do the things that you truly want and not worry about having to accommodate others.