Your Most Important Employee: How to Improve Their Performance

I believe that every role within an organisation is important because quite frankly, if there’s a person allocated to do the work, it has to be important otherwise the job wouldn’t exist.

But which role do you think is the most important? In any business?

When someone asked a colleague of mine many years ago what she does for living, she replied with “I’m just a receptionist”. Just’ a receptionist!???

I stepped in immediately because I know full well that there is no such thing as ‘just‘ a receptionist. What struck me most was that this person felt like she was a “nobody” in the organisation, that her job wasn’t important and that ultimately her role was just to answer phones. And to be honest, this started showing in her attitude toward not only the title but to her work and her interactions with her colleagues and eventually to clients too.

Most people don’t realise it however, your receptionist is perhaps the single most important role in your business. How they represent your company, your staff and yourself is critical to business success. But how do they know that their role is this important? The fact is that most of them don’t know it and that’s because it’s never really been communicated that way.

I’d like to pose these questions:

Is your receptionist just a receptionist?
What do you expect of them?
What is the priority of their role?
Are they achieving those expectations?
Are they exceeding them?
If not, do they understand how important their role is? and
If they don’t understand, how can you convey it to them so that they are able to take more pride in their work and their interactions with their colleagues?

Lastly, I’d like you to consider changing the title “Receptionist” for those uniquely fantastic front of house people who live and breathe what it means to be in the most important role of any organisation – promote them to the title of “Director of First Impressions” and see how their attitude, their work and their ability to make the right impressions for your clients (both internal and external) improve beyond their already outstanding performance.

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