Selecting the right person for each position within your company is imperative, but the receptionist is probably one of the most crucial. When clients enter your business for the first time, the person to greet them when they enter the office is not typically the CEO or sales manager. It is the receptionist. They create the first impression that a client has of your business, whether it’s good or bad, so it is important to choose the right receptionist for your company’s image. Blue hair, ripped jeans and a nose ring are probably not the image that you want to convey, unless you happen to run a tattoo parlor or skateboard shop, then this might be just the image you are looking for.
While many people view the role of the receptionist as minor, this couldn’t be farther from the truth! The role of the receptionist is vital to the smooth operation of any office. The receptionist’s duties include: acting as an ambassador by welcoming people to your business, screening phone calls, setting appointments, and directing client traffic throughout the work day. Organizational skills are an intrinsic part of the receptionists job, as is good judgment, diplomacy and proper etiquette. A good receptionist will create a welcoming atmosphere for your clients, help to keep the staff organized, and serve as an information center for employees and clients alike. This does not include the latest water cooler gossip! Not found in the job description for receptionist are the following qualities: poor personal hygiene, sloppy dress, a limited or poor command of the language, or phrases such as “that’s not in my job description” or “get your own coffee.”
When searching for a receptionist, a personality type that should be avoided is that of the drama queen. The drama queen always needs to be the center of attention. Their problems, imagined or otherwise, always trump the needs of anyone else in their hemisphere. They may be entertaining to listen to on lunch break, but are probably not the best person to act as the face of your company.
Many receptionists also work in an administrative capacity, so it is important to make sure that their knowledge of the office software used by your company goes further than knowing the brand name, and that they can actually type. No, this does not include using only the index finger of each hand, or the ability to send rapid text messages!
Remember, by hiring the right receptionist, you are on your way to having a successful, smooth running company.
Written in association with Office Angels