If Being a Successful Receptionist is in Your Plans, Read This Hub
By: KENNETH AVERY
I am the last one to give out advice and point to places where employees need correction. I am just an average guy, maybe a potential customer of your company and a guy who knows how things should be run. Not to imply nor leave a “bad taste in your mouth,” by what I am going to say, it’s just that things are differently as seen from an outsider than it does from the inside. This one fact may be “the” key to a successful career or “sent packing.”
The only reason I am mentioning (and hopefully helping) female receptionists is the mere fact that most of us, men and women, automatically-associate a woman being the front desk receptionist for a number of reasons and all of them respectful. This is not to slam male receptionists, for they have their place as well. But the things I mention in this story are for both genders to learn from and set themselves in a forward direction and be able to be the very best receptionist that their company ever hired.
Ellie Kemper, "Erin," of The Office
SUCCESS IS EASY TO REACH
This is not a loafty-goal, but very reachable. If the fresh-from-college receptionist-trainees will pay attention and do things to remember my advice for the time will come in the future that you, the eager women and men, may have to fall back on your “ace in the hole”: This advice, that will enable you to be more confident, more sure of yourself and easier for you to “get into the flow” of being “the” first person a client, new or old, will see upon entering the company’s lobby.
Being a receptionist is actually a strong power found in a simple position. A power that is not for you to abuse, but take very seriously. Just think. All it would take for your company to land (or sadly, lose) a new client worth millions is just one misspoken word or phrase, one inappropriate look, remark, or one moment of bad attitude shown by you, the front desk receptionst. Something to think about, huh?
More receptionists at work
I wager that you never considered the job of a receptionist to be that important, did you? Well it is. Very important. And you should remember this each day that you head to work. “You” are probably “the” one whom coordinates work and handles calls for everyone in management, Human Resources and in some cases, the sales department. People will respect you if you are professional from head to toe.
And as you train for being a receptionist, please remember . . .
These Are Things That You Do Not Say---
- “Well, don’t just gaze at me. What do you want?”—to a new customer. You sound like a bouncer in a sleazy bar. Even slezy bars have more-pleasant receptionists than you.
- “Gordon, Wilby, Dock and Turk, how may I help you? What? Can you hold a minute? My girlfriend who is a shopaholic is trying to lure me into some shopping at lunch—hey, we might even “ditch” this afternoon!”—to anyone on the phone. This greeting tells the customer a lot of things. You are irresponsible, lazy, lack attention, and couldn’t care less about your job.
- “Well, can you move faster? I do not have all the time in the world!”—to an elderly person. These seniors have money to spend with your company. Greet them with respect and honor.
- “Hey, are you lost? This is not the senior citizen center!”—also to senior citizens who come through your door. Just what if they did make a mistake? And their son, their grandson, was YOUR boss?
- “You want to see whom? Well, tough luck. He is out for a day or two. Oh, an appointment. That makes a difference. Hold it a minute while I buzz him. (YOU HIT THE PAGE TO HIS PHONE) Oh, I was wrong. He is out for the entire week. Haw, haw. He even said before he left that you were so gullible, I could tell you anything.”—to a new customer who is close friends with Your boss.
- “Johnny Blade’s Porn Shop . . .just kidding. Oh, ‘Mr. Busby, the CEO, uhh, well, I was just kidding.” *Note: Yes, people in the Unemployment Office will soon be laughing themselves to death with your sharp sense of humor.
- “Don’t you tell me how to be a receptionst! I did this tacky job for 12 years in L.A.!”—to Your Trainer.
- “Wooo-eeee, can ya’ break me off a piece of that?”—to a male employee. Odds are, he is not a “player” and a happily-married man who loathes women who make cheap remarks like this.
Even more receptionists making money and having fun
These Are Things That You Do Not Do---
- Come to work only wearing your pants/slacks and shoes.
- Shop up at your desk with food spills all over your clothes.
- Make it to work with a massive hangover.
- Take long naps when there are no bosses around. *Note: today’s offices have security cameras, so keep that in mind.
- If you are a woman in a skirt, do not place your feet on your desk and if you are a man, do not slip your pants off then place your feet on your desk. *Note: both are termination offenses.
- Look like and talk like a circus clown who has “lost it.”
- Jump all around the lobby furniture acting like a hungry hyena.
- Get angry quickly if customers will not bribe you into allowing them to see your boss.
- Play “Lobby Rodeo” with other receptionists who take turns riding the lazy salespersons who are just putting in their time to get a paycheck.
- Draw a bullseye with your lipstick on the front door and see how many times you can hit the center with your box of pens—some have sharp points. So what if you hit a customer? He will have a rough time proving that you did this insensitive act.
Coming soon: “Having Some Big Fun at The State Fair”
Hey, girls and guys who dream of being a good receptioinist: Watch this video.
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To Emmett Kelly.