Here we go – let’s get something done. Read my comments below, and then take a really good look at the Quick Start List.

Let Me be very clear about this quick start list

Many of the items listed in this Quick Start List are covered ONLY in the Advanced Bartending Course. However, you can get a pretty good idea of what you should be doing simply by reading the list.

Remember that this is a Basic Bartending Course. This course probably covers most, if not all, of what every other online bartending course covers. The big difference in my paid course is in Sections 15 and 16 – Job Preparation and the Bartender Job Interview.

Those two sections will blow you away. I give you precise details in Section 15, “Job Preparation,” on how to organize, prepare, and search for your first bartending job. Then, in Section 16, “The Interview,” I provide you with a massive amount of content and videos to really NAIL THAT JOB INTERVIEW.

So, don’t be discouraged! And, if you’re reading this right now then you know that for everyone who is currently taking my Basic Bartending Course here gets free access to my “Advanced Bartending Course” which will be launching within the next month or two. Yep – and lifetime access. Free. But this won’t last long! Currently, you can read the details on my home page here.

Bartender Job Applicants Must Be Organized

Download the Quick Start List from Section 20 (Course Resources.) The list is available in both a text file and a PDF. Take your pick. I have also inserted the list below if you scroll down. You could just cut and paste that list also. Or, take a picture with your Smart Phone.

Print out the list and start accomplishing some of these tasks while you really dig in to the course – Hard Skills are coming up next in Section 3.

The main purpose for the “Quick Start” section is to give you some actual tasks to complete while you’re going through the course and studying. A head start, so to speak.

Remember – the Quick Start here is no substitute for the rest of the course! Especially sections 15 and 16. Please keep in mind that the more you learn, the better prepared you will be to answer any question that may arise during the interview.

Give Section 15 a Quick Read First!

Yes, give it a quick once-over. There’s a lot of information in Lesson 15, and it will give you a good idea of what you should be doing. Then come back to this list – it will make more sense.

Sections 15 and 16 (Job Preparation and the Job Interview), are really the heart of this course, and you should have a firm grasp of what you’re up against – and how you can set yourself up for success through job preparation and ace the interview. You may not get a second chance!

You may have already done a quick run-through of this course (or parts of it), and realized that people out there weren’t telling the truth – yes, you CAN get hired with no experience.

You then may decide that you can pull it off by accomplishing the tasks on the Quick Start List and then immediately going out and applying for bartending jobs – without thoroughly going through the course. Careful here, and read on!

IMPORTANT! Where do you live? If you live in an area that has only 10 or so bars, restaurants, hotels, etc., within 30 miles – then I highly recommend that you go through the entire course FIRST before going out there and interviewing for jobs.

On the other hand, if you live in a major metropolis, it may be worth your while to quickly run through these “Quick Start” tasks and start putting in some applications (mostly online), while you progress through the course. Nothing wrong with that if you’re highly motivated and very organized, and I go into much more detail in the “Job Preparation” section.

I’m also aware that many of you are real “go-getters,” and wish to hit the ground running. That’s great, but I’d really be disappointed to learn that you failed to land a job because you were unprepared for the interview. Remember: You’re probably going to get only one shot at an interview with each bar you apply at.

YOU have to decide if the risk in applying/going in for interviews before completing the course is worth it. It may bite you in the butt! My recommendation is to complete most of the list below so that you’re completely ready to go once you have completed the course.

The Bartender’s Quick Start List

Some of the below items cannot be done in just one sitting. As you go through the course, keep referring back to this list and start knocking off the tasks. It’ll have you ready to go once you’re confident enough to get out there and interview.

I’ve organized this list into three sections:

  • What you can do at home to get set up for the job interview
  • What you should be doing while researching the job market
  • What you should be doing while out in the field

You can start accomplishing all of the above as you proceed through the course.

Obviously, there are disadvantages of going into a job interview unprepared, but keep in mind that you can submit resumes online, and sometimes in person, without having to interview at that time. You can certainly do this if you plan on really buckling down and going through the course in a weekend or two.

Many times, the bar will not contact you for days, weeks, or even months. Getting your resume submitted puts you in the pecking order as soon as possible, and, more importantly, gives you the needed time to complete the course.

PLEASE! Go through the resume and cover letter lesson in Section 15 before submitting any resumes. I go over stuff in that lesson (in the Advanced Bartending Course), that you probably never thought of. And, I’ve done the research (along with my own experience), on the best tips and techniques out there to get people to read and remember what’s on your resume. This is vitally important!

In the list below, I have added the Section Number of the course where you can find the detailed information on each item listed. Remember, this is just a “Quick Start” list for those of you who wish to hit the ground running.

Important! Some of the items below are covered only in the Advanced Bartending Course. Even though I do not cover some of these topics in the Basic Bartending Course here – it will still give you an idea of what you should be doing. Clues, so to speak!

What You Can Do at Home

  • Put together a short, concise cover letter. (Section 15) (Much More Detail in Advanced Course)
  • Get your resume together. (Section 15) (Much More Details in the Advanced Course)
  • Order a Liquor Pouring Kit off the internet – or wherever. About $20. (Section 3)
  • Order a bar kit. About $20. (Section 3)
  • Scrub your Social Media! (Section 15) (Advanced Course)
  • Compile a list of ALL restaurants and bars in your area. (Section 15) (Advanced Course – More Detail)
  • Compile a list of ALL hotels in your area. (Section 15). (Advanced Course – More Detail)
  • Do you know someone in the business? Do you already frequent some bars? Let them know that you are training as a bartender. (Section 15)
  • Get your Food Handler/Alcohol Awareness Training card – if required in your state/county. (Sections 9, 11, 15)
  • Practice Pouring Liquor. (Section 3)
  • Download my cheat sheet and start memorizing drink recipes. (Section 20)
  • Download my cheat sheet and start memorizing the types of alcohol and brands. (Section 20)
  • Download the audio tapes (coming soon!) to your computer and/or phone. Take them everywhere! (Sections 15, 20) (Advanced Course)
  • Download the Anki deck (coming soon!) to help memorize cocktails and alcohol brands. (Section 15, 20) (Advanced Course)
  • Take a quick look at interview questions. Start getting your “story” together. (Section 16) (Advanced Course)
  • Learn how to use Google Maps efficiently. (Section 15) (Advanced Course)

Look at the Job Market

  • Check the newspapers, online, Craig’s List, etc., for current job openings. Some bars will advertise, “Interviews Start Next Week,” or something like that. Get out in front of it. (Section 15) (Advanced Course)
  • Google “major restaurant and bar corporations” and learn how to apply online. (Section 15) (Advanced Course)
  • Go to for a nice list of major restaurant and bars. Apply if ready. (Section 15) (Advanced Course)
  • For online openings, submit resume and cover letter – ONLY if they’re updated and ready to go! (Section 15) (Advanced Course)
  • If you know of a nearby bar (or any bar, for that matter), that you REALLY want to work at: Go to their website and do a little research on the company. Get their “Mission Statement.” (Section 15)(Advanced Course)
  • Take into consideration the size of your city/area. How far do you wish to travel to work every day? (Section 15)
  • Focus on areas with a cluster of bars – efficiency. (Section 15) (Advanced Course)

Out in the Field

  • Go to every bar you can. Every day. Before work, after work, any time! Observe and quiz the working bartenders. (Section 15). Important: this is NOT an interview you’re looking for. You’re just trying to get the lay of the land – see how things REALLY work behind a bar. (Section 15). (Advanced Course)
  • Take the list of questions (have the list on your phone), to ask working bartenders. Don’t be shy – ask them! (Sections 15 and 20) (Advanced Course)
  • Start mapping out your routes – use Google Maps. It’s all about efficiency. (Section 15) (Advanced Course)

Keep something in mind: When you’re out and about observing bartenders, you don’t know if the bar is hiring. They might not even know until that day! You could get extremely lucky. (Section 15, Advanced Course). This is why you ALWAYS keep a few copies of your cover letter and resume in your car. Or backpack. Or whatever. And, by the way, dress nice!

Lightening can strike – believe me! 

If, through the course of your conversations with bartenders, you discover that they are currently looking for a bartender – let them know you are currently in training. (Section 15).

Ask them for a job application! Prepare to interview immediately – or return the next day. Again, I cover this in much more detail in the Advanced Bartending Course.

If you’re following along in the Basic Bartending Course:

Next Lesson: A New Section – The Hard Skills Introduction

Previous Lesson: Quick Start: Organization and Motivation

Back to the Course Start Page: Basic Bartending Course