Working at Flathead Lake Lodge: An Inside Look at Becoming Part of the Lodge Family

*This is a guest post by Lauren Picard. Lauren has been part of our summer staff for the last three seasons.

Hey there! If you’ve stayed with us or worked at Flathead Lake Lodge within the past few summers, there’s a likely chance that you and I have crossed paths. My name is Lauren and I have been a seasonal employee at the lodge since 2017; one summer as a waitstaff member and the last two as a wrangler. And honestly, working at Flathead Lake Lodge has been the highlight of my past few years. With its picture-perfect setting on the shores of Flathead Lake, the charming town of Bigfork just up the road and the incredible people the Averills gather in this place, I’ve created memories and met people that will stick with me for a lifetime. 

Wrangler Lauren at Flathead Lake Lodge.

Like any family, the Averills and the team they assemble each season collectively adhere to core values and expectations that highlight the work done at Montana’s Flathead Lake Lodge. From a large pool of applicants that submit their resumes every winter, those who come to the ranch in the spring are the ones who have shown that they align with the Flathead  Lake Lodge’s core values (more on those in each of the paragraphs below). If you’re interested in applying to spend a summer at the lodge, I’m here to show you what they’re looking for and how to make yourself stand out.

Be Genuine and Selfless

At Flathead Lake Lodge, we’re all about building meaningful relationships. This includes relationships with our guests, as well as our coworkers. Over the course of our guests’ seven-day stays, we interact with them all day, whether it’s serving meals, taking them on trail rides or boat cruises or simply passing them on the walking paths. Offering them a friendly smile and kind hello sets the tone of their week as it’s our responsibility to welcome them into our home and make them feel comfortable as best we can. We don’t have customer-service voices or practiced smiles; we only have our genuine and authentic selves to display the best of the Flathead Lake Lodge family. 

Strong Family Values

As a third generation family-owned and -operated establishment, family values play a big role in the day-to-day happenings of Flathead Lake Lodge. Displaying a sense of strong family values can set you apart from the pack when it comes to applying for a job at the lodge, as it aligns you with the set of values that created this place and have kept it in operation for almost 75 years. To sum it up: the staff at the lodge is there for each other as a family, just like our guests become part of our lodge family. 

Be Willing and Durable to Meet Expectations

There is one skill and attribute that is absolutely, no-question-about-it, definitely sought after in any and every department at Flathead Lake Lodge: be willing and teachable

Making friends at our weekly barn dance.

This applies to everything. Anywhere you work at Flathead Lake Lodge, between waterfront, the barn, to maintenance and housekeeping, there will be people there—whether returning employees or the department managers or Mr. Doug Averill himself—to help you learn the ins and outs of your position that will allow you to be successful. Every skill required of a job at the lodge is able to be taught and explained. What cannot be taught, however, is the willingness to learn and the ability to accept help gracefully. To stand out among other applicants, highlight your teachability and willingness to learn

Strive for Excellence with Effective Results

Imagine you’re having people over to your house for the first time. Your kitchen is spotless, you’ve whipped up the best batch of cookies you’ve ever made and all the pillows and cushions in the living room fluffed and ready for company. You’ve striven for excellence in your home for the best first impression.

When guests arrive at Flathead Lake Lodge for the week, they’re arriving to your home and you want to create a great first impression. In everything we do as part of the Flathead Lake Lodge family, we strive for the absolute best to give the guests the absolute best experience and meet their expectations. This need for excellence lasts the whole week—week after week—through the whole summer, rain or shine, hot or cold, early in the morning until late in the evening, you show up to introduce guests to the very best of this place we call home.

Lauren’s favorite place, the barn.

Have Fun

When you work at Flathead Lake Lodge, you are working on a 2,000-acre lakeside playground, complete with mountain biking, hiking, boating, horseback riding and so much more—enjoy it! Summit nearby Mount Aeneas and hang out with the mountain goats. Hop onto as many sails as you can on the lodge’s two Classic Q-class sloops, the Questa and the Nor’Easter. Go to the barn dance and roast marshmallows on the island. Explore Glacier National Park and set out on horseback rides with guests or friends. This is your playground too; take the time to play and soak up summer in Montana. 

Applying for a job at Flathead Lake Lodge isn’t merely applying for a summer job in Montana; it’s applying for the best summer (or summers) of your life and will be full of adventures, new people, new places, really good food (ever hear of the Freshman-15? Beware of the Flathead-15!) and memories that will last a lifetime. I will forever cherish my summers as a member of the Flathead Lake Lodge family and can’t wait to go back someday. Who knows…maybe I’ll even see you there!

If you’re interested in a job at this lakeside playground, visit their job page here for more information. 

Happy trails from Wrangler Lauren!