What’s it like to be a receptionist?

Emmanuel Zvada

By Emmanuel Zvada
Being a receptionist can be a fulfilling and rewarding job that can pay generous salaries and lead to career progression. The power and influence of receptionists in general is crucial in reflecting company culture. So, this article will give an overview of receptionist tips and tricks that will benefit the whole company. A receptionist is often the first employee of an organization to have contact with a client or client. They are responsible for giving a good first impression of the organization.

What does it mean to be a receptionist?

The receptionist is the first person visitors meet in your office. Thus, receptionists have a strong influence on a visitor’s perception. Receptionists respond to inquiries and provide information to the general public, customers, visitors and other interested parties regarding the activities conducted at the establishment and location of departments, offices and employees within the organization . They also operate switchboards to answer, screen or transfer calls, provide information, take messages or schedule appointments. People in the front office can give a good or bad image to the company, which is why organizations must also ensure that they invest heavily in them. For most receptionists there are areas that may require additional training and they will be discussed below.

Receptionist Key Skills

emotionally intelligent skills

Having high emotional intelligence and the ability to successfully manage your emotions in difficult situations will likely improve the outcome of your actions. Emotional intelligence is a valuable skill, but improving it takes patience and determination. Having emotional intelligence can help you avoid situations where you might act on impulse rather than facts. Understanding and managing your emotions and those of others can help you be more successful in your personal and professional life.

They must be great communicators and listeners

The receptionist’s oral communication skills must be excellent. If your receptionist can’t communicate well, there’s always a chance for improvement as long as the person is determined. Communication skills are the best asset a receptionist can have. They communicate with customers face-to-face and virtually. If you are a receptionist, you must have the ability to speak well and convey information clearly. Active listening and excellent customer service skills are also a must. A talented receptionist can connect callers and visitors with the right employees, as well as skillfully handle basic customer service issues and requests.

Strong technological skills

Office technology is constantly changing and receptionists must be able to operate a variety of equipment and systems. Telephone systems usually have more than one line and several functions. Computer skills are a must, especially in word processing and e-mail. Receptionists, who are also familiar with spreadsheets, desktop publishing, or other industry-specific software, have additional skills that are in demand. Receptionists often perform several administrative tasks, from receiving visitors and answering phone calls, to scheduling appointments for customers and clients. Many receptionists are expected to have previous experience using telephone systems, printers, photocopiers and familiarity with MS Word and Excel.

Well maintained with a pleasant personality

Since the receptionist is the first person to greet visitors when they walk through the door, they should be well groomed and dressed in standard business attire. A pleasant personality is more of a combination of being friendly, helpful, approachable, cheerful, and other pleasant traits that make talking to the person a pleasant experience. Note that a pleasant personality does not mean a pretty face, although beauty adds to it. Any business would benefit from a friendly smile and a pleasant personality that welcomes customers. A receptionist is such an employee. A visitor who enters the office is often greeted by the receptionist because they are the first person someone meets or sees.

Exceptional organizational skills

A good receptionist balances strong interpersonal skills with effective organizational skills. Receptionists are the people who represent the face of the company, in addition to taking calls and directing visitors, they often deal with customers, organize events and organize meetings. They must maintain an organized workspace and be able to communicate clearly and effectively with customers, vendors, associates and supervisors. In a business office, the receptionist often prepares outgoing mail and receives incoming mail. To handle these tasks properly, they must have a system in place that allows them to access the right information in a timely and accurate manner.

Receptionists must be versatile

The best receptionists go the extra mile to help in any way they can, and one of the best ways to do that is to learn new and varied skills and use them to benefit the company. For example, receptionists typically interact with visiting customers and potential customers in an informal and relaxed manner upon arrival. Proactive people can use these meetings to help sales and marketing teams by identifying where potential customers heard about the company and trying to identify their specific business needs. These additional skills can really help receptionists thrive as valued members of an organization’s team.

Complaints Handling Techniques

Often, the receptionist is the one who hears the complaints since she takes care of the customers first. Even if they are not responsible for the problem, they may have to put up with harsh words. The ability to effectively handle customer complaints and issues is vital for receptionists. While it is beneficial to provide exceptional service throughout the sales process, customers who complain and have their issues resolved effectively often develop strong emotional loyalty to a company. Always respond to any complaint you receive in person or in writing. If you think your business is wrong, apologize to the customer and review the complaint with an open mind, because just one customer can tarnish the image of the business.

Dress to impress and be respectful

When you’re a receptionist, you’re the first person a customer sees and interacts with, so it’s very important that your appearance reflects the business well. Before heading to the office, make sure your appearance is professional and ready for success. You are representing a business, so you must be professionally dressed. The first thing to keep in mind when dressing up as a receptionist is getting a business-appropriate appeal. Low-cut tops and short dresses or skirts are simply not appropriate for the office and can reflect badly on the company. If your business is okay with casual dress, remember that you should never dress too casually.

Ability to manage stress

Among the other traits of a receptionist, one of the most important is the ability to handle stress. Dealing with customers is not always a pleasant experience, which is why receptionists must have their own way of dealing with stress. While interacting with customers, they must also be very diplomatic and courteous. Being a receptionist is a demanding job.

A receptionist must be able to handle stress at work. An office can suddenly go from a good day to a bad emotional day because of clients or clients, and so a receptionist needs to know how to handle stress. In fact, all receptionists should know how to manage stress because they are prone to
meet different people who come with different levels of stress.

Efficiently manage busy office traffic

As a receptionist, you are responsible for serving customers while managing other tasks simultaneously. A receptionist must be good at handling traffic. Many people come into any organization and are directed where to go by the receptionists. When your reception is busy, don’t let your frustration get the better of you. Remember that you are often the first face a customer sees or the first voice a customer hears when doing business with your company.

A receptionist is often the first person customers see or communicate with when conducting business in person or over the phone. Their personal qualities make a lasting impression on potential and existing clients. For this reason, it is important for them to have personal qualities that make customers feel welcome and satisfied with the way they meet their needs.

  • Emmanuel Zvada is a human capital consultant/international recruitment expert and author. He writes here in a personal capacity.


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