Tips for Front Desk Receptionists

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A warm, cheerful and efficient receptionist is an important asset for a business. A receptionist symbolizes the company's principles and its respect and value for its customers. Sincerity in approach is very important for a receptionist. With a competent receptionist on its team, a company can be sure of creating a memorable first impression on clients. If you are looking to make it as a successful receptionist, some tips can be handy.

Listen Actively

  • In the role of a receptionist, you interact with people a lot. You have complaining customers, anxious managers and other people who want you to listen. As such, active listening skills are crucial. You need a keen ear to listen to the speaker's vocalized message and his nonvocalized message conveyed through his body language. Give rapt attention to what the speaker is saying without letting noise, people or other surrounding things distract you. Be patient and do not hurry or interrupt the speaker. Wait until she has finished and then pose questions if any. If you are taking a message, repeat it to the giver to ensure that you have got it correctly.

Observe Telephone Manners

  • Telephone etiquette is an essential skill for receptionists. Greet callers with a cheerful tone. Listen to them as they talk, and reply clearly. Address callers with their surnames. Try to be patient even if the caller is irritating. While on a call, if you need to handle another incoming call or check for information relevant to the caller, seek permission first instead of straight away asking the caller to hold on. If it is you calling someone, inform them who you are and then proceed to give the message. Be clear and concise in your speech to save time for the listener and get your work done quick.

Be Your Company's Selling Agent

  • Though this is not part of your receptionist responsibilities, you can add value to your company by creating selling opportunities. An example that Hospitality World Network website gives in this regard explains this concept better: Front desk receptionists in hotels often respond to inquiries from walk-in visitors on room cost with just the price, "It's $100 for a night stay." This in no way helps the visitor make a decision or the hotel get business. Instead, receptionists should explain visitors along with the room rent information, the services they would be getting. Even better would be to explain different stay options and accompanying services available at the hotel, which would make visitors to stop, think and make a decision.

Customer Service

  • The quality of being able to get along with people is vital for a receptionist to provide good customer service. Be empathetic to your customers' situation and address their grievances promptly. Hospitality World Network website provides a good example of bad customer service by the front desk: A nonlocal visitor who wanted some best advice on local attractions approached the front desk and was presented with a map. You can get maps on the Internet. What the front desk could have done is offer some valuable suggestions on attractions as an area local, which was what the customer was expecting.

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