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Comments (31)


What are the top 3 traits or skills every receptionist must have to excel?

Can you suggest any tips or insights to develop your receptionist expertise?

Dani in Rockford, IL

106 months ago

i am curious as to what skills you should possess to be a good receptionist.

Joyce Kelley in Lewisville, TX

105 months ago

I believe a receptionist gives the first impression of the company and should be professional, helpful, courteous, and able to help guests feel comfortable.

Deborh Beharry in New York, NY

105 months ago

Being a receptionist for 30 years I leraned that a recepitonist needs to have a lot of fath because dealing with customers or clients who are rude and Obnoxious takes more than just skills. They don't realize that we have a job to do and being rude doesn't get you there any faster.

Marianne in Manhattan Beach, California

103 months ago

Your must first know your system and how it works. Have people skills that empower your company and inform your caller with accurate information. You must perform all telephone skills with confidence and style. One more, respect yourself and your fellow workers.

Lauren in Beaverton, Oregon

99 months ago

What degree would they need to complete there job? high School demploma What else?
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Debbie in Grande Prairie, Alberta

93 months ago

Smile,, even when answering the phone, believe it or not, people can tell if you are smiling on the phone.
Eager,, make sure your boss and any co-workers you answer to, have exactly what they need at all times.
Attention to detail,, make sure that, that phone number is right when you take down a message, name and company should also be right.
I have been a receptionst for private and public companies for over 25 years. It is a glorified customer service rep, and there are a lot more than three things that make a good receptionst.

ladycascadia in Halsey, Oregon

86 months ago

A positive attitude
A good work ethic
A willingness to be helpful

Those three qualities are important in all jobs, but especially for a top notch receptionist.

danielle in Halifax, United Kingdom

84 months ago


HAWAIIAN HOTTIE in Kaneohe, Hawaii

81 months ago

to be courteous,always smile,smile,smile. Have excelent computer skills while on the phone... Also taking notes and sending messages. Accurately professinally verbal skills.!!!!!!

prashworth in Jonesboro, Georgia

77 months ago

Tonya White in Dublin, GA said: To be a good receptionist, one must be able to work well with the public. One must present themselves in a friendly way. After all, first impressions make a lasting impression. Being a receptionist, you are the first face and voice others see and/or hear. Therefore, your attitude can either make or break a business deal with other companies. Receptionist should be friendly, courteous, and willing to help those that call and/or stop by; after all, that's what you are getting paid to do.

Absoutely right, I have worked in reception/clerical/adm. asst./office manager field for over 10 years. You have to become a professional friend to customers, clients, associates, etc. You are the first person they see coming in, and in most cases the last person they see going out. It essence same as in interview status. You may a good impression for the company or for whomever you work, treat the public with respect and friendliness and it will get back to the inside. I love being in this area. I love associating with people. I am not nurse material, however, this is the next best field in my opinion to relate to all types of people, and you do in this business. Learning to adapt to different personalities is also a key factor.

McDonough, Ga
Administrative/ Helper and loving it! in Thornville, Ohio

76 months ago

Host said: What are the top 3 traits or skills every receptionist must have to excel?

Can you suggest any tips or insights to develop your receptionist expertise?

I feel that the top three traits or skills that every receptionist must have to excel is people skill, telephone ettiquette, and the ability to make an outstanding first impression either over the phone or in person. in Thornville, Ohio

76 months ago

Dani in Rockford, IL said: i am curious as to what skills you should possess to be a good receptionist.

Good people skills, good phone skills, organizational skills, and the ability to make a good first impression over the phone or in person. in Thornville, Ohio

76 months ago

Wow you really must hate being a receptionist! If that is the case why do you stay in that position. I have been a receptionist for over a decade and know exactly what it entails, but I want my foot in the door for another position. That is how it starts.

danielle in Keighley, United Kingdom

76 months ago

i am a new receptionist and have been working for over two weeks and i love it. i have met the occasional moody ones but i keep a smile on my face and help them out as best as i can. does anyone have any advice about working as a receptionist in a hotel as i'm applying for another job as this is temporary. and this is my first ever job.

Pam in Lake Elsinore, California

76 months ago

You must have a super pleasant phone and speaking voice. It must never come off as being rude.

Angela in Seattle, Washington

73 months ago

Well, the field of reception has changed a lot over the years. Receptionist now are expected to have administrative skills. And some may even be required to do some light bookkeeping. So it really depends on the firm that employs you. But I think overall, you must be positive and have a great telephone voice. You must be patient (and trust me, it will be tested at times). You must be gracious to everyone who comes through your door. Whether it be a client or the mail delivery person. Remember, you are setting the image for the entire company. Do NOT EVER gossip. Many of you will find the front desk acts as a sort of confessional as well. Whatever you hear, keep it to yourself!!

mandy in Vancouver, Washington

72 months ago

K. Ayne in Chagrin Falls, Ohio said: God, I hate the phrase "Take the initiative". To me it means that unless you are completely psychic to what your boss wants, then you are worthless.

A receptionist's job expectations should be mapped out in detail at the initial interview. If the boss wants the receptionist to learn something new, he should tell her!

WOW: I totally disagree...if you work in a company long enough you should be able to read your boss. That is true office gold! Your BOSS is usaually too busy to keep baby sitting you! Maturity is key! That is what it takes to take charge

Receptive in New York, New York

72 months ago

amanita in Salt Lake City, Utah said: your dumb

actually it would be "You're" your refers to possession, as in use YOUR brain before you insult someone.

Tina in Accra, Ghana

71 months ago

A receptionist should be
2)neatly dressed always
5)trust worthy

GiGi in Gainesville, Florida

65 months ago

10 Top Reasons To Think About Being a Receptionist:
1) Do you like being thought of as the bottom of the totem pole, so to speak. Well, as the receptionist, people will barely acknowledge you as the wonderful human being you are. Sad, but true.
2)Do you like chapped lips and a bladder stretched out like a party balloon? Finding someone to take your place to pee is a major production. So, therefore, drinking any liquids is out of the question....God forbid, you have an upset stomach!
3)Stupid people who assume you are stupider than they are because you are a receptionist. Enough said.
4)Staying at the office when everyone has gone early for holidays. So you can tell callers everyone has left early for the holiday....
5)Hearing the same thing over and over and over and.....
6)Being the only one in the office who can't EVER take a day to go do something personal without it turning into a giant fiasco of who's going to take over the phones while you're out. I think they assume receptionists never need to go to the doctor, the dentist, another job interview...
7)Being responsible for the most mundane, humiliating tasks..."GiGi, we're out of toilet paper in the men's room!" Oh, Yeah!! Wow, I'm writing that one down on my resume: Restocking men's room supplies.
8)Being yelled at by callers. For reasons you can't fix for them. Because you're just the receptionist.
9)UPS-FedEx-USPS hitting on you daily. Every day. Same guys. With no positive response from you. And still, they keep trying.
10)Hearing a phone ringing in your sleep. And you will.
Bottom line. All this PollyAnna crap other people are trying to feed you on here is just blowing sunshine up your arse. This is a terrible job that you will loathe and despise after just a few months.

GiGi in Gainesville, Florida

65 months ago

And yes, I've recently sat for my state exam and received my mortgage broker's license and am now about to sit for my state exam for my realtor's license.

jaxta in Perth, Australia

62 months ago

Hmm now i feel a bit stressed with all these different comments, particularly some of the negative ones. I have a job interview today for a reception role at a real estate agency. I have no real previous experience in working in an office..except a few hours which I did back in school as Admin Assistant to help the teachers out. Its weird I kind of hope I get the job but I also hope I dont get it...the only reason I need it now is to help support and pay for my flight lessons. Other than that I dont think I will like the job much. I also think I am a bit worried about this role because I dont really like answering phones too much due to my last job I had where the manager (b!tch) would constantly tell me off for making minor mistakes, and this never helped me improve. Im outgoing yes, especially in face to face with customers, and I can be over the phone too, Im not shy. I just think now I kinda dread the idea of taking phone calls frmo people, especially being new on the job and not being able to help them enough because I'd still be learning how to take their inquires etc..

GiGi in Gainesville, Florida

62 months ago

You can take the job knowing it will be short-term while you are getting on to something else. You have bills to pay and school to pay for, so an income is needed. But if you know you hate answering phones, and there is another job you can take, then don't take the reception position. I worked for a real estate firm when I was much younger and it can be fun. You get to meet people from all over and they're generally in a good mood when looking for a home. But there is quite a bit of phone time.

Jonty in Brisbane, Australia

54 months ago

I have been a medical receptionist for thirty five years. Fist thing is to love your job, respect your boss and love your patients. Difficult people are dealing with a problem you do not know about, a little bit of kindness and they usually open up. Be professional, friendly, efficient, helpful-give 120%, empathic and yourself. Leave your problems at home, you are here to look after others. If you have return clients, add to their appointment anything of importance they have told you, ie birthday, birth of grandchild, holiday and particularly death of a partner. Remember their names, greet them as a valued client, patient etc. Most of all treat them as you would like to be treated yourself. If you are doing the job just for money, FORGET IT, go pump gas or something that doesn't take any effort on your part. Being a receptionist is one of the greatest opportunities to do good. in Aurora, Colorado

50 months ago

Host said: What are the top 3 traits or skills every receptionist must have to excel?

Can you suggest any tips or insights to develop your receptionist expertise?

Anyone who doesn't recognize being a receptionist is the most important "first impression" a company makes will not do well in this position. Yes it can be considered the lowest starting point in a company, but it is the most visible and most important to make an impression on new and existing clients. Be interested, sincere, helpful, direct and to the point all with a smile "a genuine smile". This will translate through the phone and you'll have the clients coming back for more. You will be assigned more duties to alleviate administrative backlog for the company. This is good experience, the more you make yourself valuable or add to your resume (keeping track) for your review you will be perceived as a greater asset to your employer. If you remember to have "FUN" while being the first impression for your company you will enjoy this opportunity. This is a stepping point to a much greater future whether with your current employer or another firm, in another capacity (promotion built from the skills you've gain working as a receptionist). Enjoy today!

Roadtrip in York, Pennsylvania

40 months ago

It's not really a comment but a question. I work at a financial institution as a receptionist. I take care of the members and their questions and direct them to our loan officers and other needs. When I am talking face to face with a member about concerns or anything they are upset about, my phone rings with one of the tellers which are directly behind me and can see I am with a member and keeps calling till I pick up. I may also add we have a call center which takes all out of office calls. The tellers will not answer their phones if they are with a member but I'm expected to interrupt the needs of the member to answer a teller calling me to tell me someone wants to open an account, in which I also direct. My question is, who should be getting my attention?

Nozizwe in Alberton, South Africa

39 months ago

hi guyz, my name is melita from daveyton,i am 32yrs,i hv bin a receptionist for over 5yrs,i luv my job so much,& my bosses they try by ol means to b nice to,des a lady who started 2yrs ago, she is a PA so they tell her,i really dont know whats her problem,when my boss is not in the office dat day she is ol nice,but de day he will b in she is very rude,closing de door like she bought it,she talks to me like she is my boss,if u try to say sumthing to her she will bite ur head,even de client they hv neva tried me lik she does, not even my boses,everything i do its wrong to her,des is 1 thing i know though, dat she is jealous,she even tried loose weight,in which i ask miself y now,she is nice when she want,but i hate her attitude most of the tym,i just nid help from u guyz what 2 do.

Receptionista in Toronto, Ontario

38 months ago

Attention: Aspiring Receptionists, Administrator's, Customer Service Reps,

I've worked predominately in the 3 fields above for over 20 years which have strong similarities. You tend to be on the phone - a lot...
While most of the information listed above is true; smiling, leaving problems at home... I believe most of what will help you is done before you get the job & outside business hours.

1) Research the co. before you say yes to a job offer - remember, you should be interviewing the co. that's interviewing you (have there been any press releases about the co.) What was said? Obtaining this information MAY help you determine the co.'s culture & how they think of/treat their customers & staff.
a) how long have they been in business?
b) do they have a web page? check it out & see what information is available
c) check out job postings, are there a lot of jobs posted? are they in various areas of the business or in the same department?
d) do you know anyone who's worked for the co.?
3) During your interview at the 'offer stage' TRY & negotiate the best "deal" possible - there are going to be days when your patience & resolve will be tested,(a good salary/vacation package) may just be the trick to HELP remind you about SOME of the positive aspects of your job.
4) Having a support system, family/friends/a hobby will be a great outlet as being a front-line employee can have challenging moments & people, sometimes you may have to smile when you want to scream - after-all you're human too!
5) Smiling & being helpful is important in these roles, so is the ability to not take it personally when people (& it may be more than 1) is having a bad day & takes their frustration out on you, remember most likely they're not mad at you - you just happen to be the person in front of them or on the phone
I hope this is helpful, all the best!

melita in Alberton, South Africa

38 months ago

thanx for your help

nkemchia Falice in Cameroon

35 months ago

a good receptionist should be soft spoken,neat,polite,humble and most especially wear a lovely smile on his/her face

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