Tuesday, December 21, 2010

visiting a business 101

Last month, I wrote a little post "calling into a business 101" filled with pet peeves and tips I've figured out and learned from being a receptionist the past 4 plus years. I'd like to think of it as helpful with a pinch of sarcasm.
Well, as promised, here are more tips...this time it's about visiting a business, because let's face it some people just don't know the dos and don'ts. :)
When visiting a buisness:
1) do not use your cell phone.
Okay, yea you're in the lobby, you're waiting to meet with who you came to see, you're bored. But really, do you need to pick up your cell phone anc start having conversations? What about the people around you trying to work. Trust me, they don't want to know about you kid's game or how pissed you are that your husband forgot to bring home milk last night. Maybe the silence is awkward for you, but it's needed for the employees that are you know, trying to work.
Tip: If you really need to use your phone, go out in the hall. Or even better, wait until later. Try reading a book instead, or magazine (both are quiet and help steer you away from boredom).
2) limit talking with employees.
I actually do like it when clients come in and I can have a conversation with them. It's nice to have some sort of friendly atmosphere with those that we work for and with. However, when they want to talk to me for the entire hour they are waiting on their attorney, I start to get a little peeved. Why? 1-I have work to do and while I enjoy talking to you, I don't have an hour to chit chat. 2-Believe it or not, my bosses hate hearing me have a conversation with clients that last an eternity when I should be working. Since they pay me to work, they kind of prefer me to work. Granted, they do like friendliness and I think they do appreciate us having a friendly (but short) conversation, so the client feels more welcome, but anything over 10 minutes, and they start to get a bit annoyed...since now it seems I'm avoiding work to chit chat.
Tip: Say hello to the emploee(s) around you. Maybe strike up a short conversation, but keep it short. They'll like you more if you're friendly AND let them work. Trust me. :)
3) your cell phone is on and you keep getting texts and calls (oh and your ringtone is LOUD)
For the same reasons as #1, loud and unnecessary noises hinder those trying to work.
Tip: try silent or vibrate. :)
Easy peasy right? And trust me, you will seem more professional and the employees will love you more (which is always good when you call later and need help...trust me, they'll remember who you are...)
What are some pet peeves and tips that you have for visiting a business?? Please share! I'd love to hear!
ps. 2 more weeks of work....it's crazy to think about, but it hit me yesterday. i've been here 4 and a half years, and i only have 2 weeks left. :( i'm gonna miss it (well, at least the people!)


Carrie Rosalind said...

I used to be a receptionist, and I agree with you 100% on these! The talking thing - oh my gosh, I hate that! I wished I could tell them to shut up so that I could do my work! Grr!

amylou said...

Love your tips, cause I deal with these things daily.

I dislike when a client stands over my desk and tries to see what I'm doing on my computer. (as if it is any of their business). Plus it is incredibley uncomfortable to have someone standing over you. I generally say something like "you are welcome to have a seat if you like."

courtney. said...

i work at two jobs (a bakery and an event venue) and both raise the same pet peeves: also being on a cell phone, loudly, while waiting for something. i also really hate when people look at you and talk to you like you're barely even there. i've smiled and said hello to people only for them to distract themselves with their phones and refuse to acknowledge me.