Importance of Front office

Reception
Front Office

Being a big company needs a reputation to be maintained, its not about the boss’s personality, it’s about the aura and feel when someone visits your office for the first time.

The trigger for this write up was from the article , on linkedin yesterday,read on by clicking

The gentleman in the above mentioned article had been for an interview and was waiting for his turn in the front office. Most likely due to unprofessional conduct on part of that company HR , despite three hours wait , the interview did not happen. Now the three hours wait in front office must have been a lesson and good insight into companies morals, ethics, discipline , employee happiness and code of conduct. All this is directly related to reputation management in terms of impression gathered by person waiting in front office and word of mouth spread of experience in front office as perceived by the visitor.

Let me also share another example , which happened personally with me some years ago. I had an interview scheduled with a reputed builder whose office was situated in the annex of a reputed leisure club. I happened to be accompanied by my elder daughter who had been recently appointed to INC and was very excited with the code of conduct of employees therein. So we reached the builders office, and informed the receptionist, that I have an appointment with HR for an interview. The interview was for an senior position and hence it was expected that HR would have informed front office about the same, since I was the only candidate that day. However the receptionist , insisted , to tell her what post , I have applied for and how etc, do I know the HR and so on and so forth. Then she asked me to have a seat and wait. Hereafter it was a lesson of most – what not to do , was happening at the air conditioned beautifully crafted reception(Front Office), despite camera’s been available probably no one was monitoring at HR/Admin/EDP level.

As I was waiting with my daughter in the reception, firstly the receptionist was not fluent in english, and her talking pitch being high was creating unwanted chatter at the front end. She had got her tiffin and wanted it to share with office boy, who insisted that in AC environment we should not eat. Then another buddy came and was showing her a video clip on whatsapp and they were giggling aloud.Then her personal phones started in marathi concurrently intercom calls were happening most of them missed. Whenever any employee came to check why calls were not being received, she was giving trivial excuses like had gone out , or was on another call etc.

Imagine a prospective buyer, or a group of investors visiting the same office and seen such conduct , would they have invested. Anyway then , I reminded the lady about the time and my interview schedule, herein she called up the HR and then asked me to visit him. There was a office boy sitting there, but he was on his mobile so, I was told to go one floor down and ask for Head HR office, when I reached down , it had a security access card system to enter, and the card was with the office boy, hence had to come back to take the same…….., finally had my interview and tried my best diplomatic skill to indicate to HR that front office needs training to hone their skills.

As me and daughter walked towards the car , she said dad please do not take a job here, the front office story tells the weakness of management and lack of accountability in this company. I could just say, how true. The point herein is with my 27 years experience and my daughter’s few days experience with a top class corporate, both came to the same inference about the company, just by being at the reception for a while.

So to conclude , it would be appropriate to say front desk is the mirror of your company conduct and an important factor to reputation management. Therefore it is pertinent to place skilled and able staff in the frontdesk , who are by conduct and mannerism able to further reputation of the company and make everyone visiting, feel important and provide a happiness factor.

ENTREPRENEURS – EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT DILEMMA

I have fewer money for salaries but employees do not come for free, should I, invest the reserves in business, or keep them for another day…..if I train my employees well, they will leave for greener pastures, and … so on are the many thoughts which cross through a young entrepreneurs mind. Is there an answer to these questions, can anyone help out.

ENTREPRENEURS

I have fewer money for salaries but employees do not come for free, should I, invest the reserves in business, or keep them for another day…..if I train my employees well,  they will leave for greener pastures, and … so on are the many thoughts which cross through a young entrepreneurs mind. Is there an answer to these questions, can anyone help out.

Well speaking from personal experience, humans need respect, space and leadership more than money they earn. I am sure most will put money first. But many have quit jobs because of bad bosses, bad environment at work place, no personal life…..but everyone looks at pay hike too, if skilled you do not give the hike someone else will. Then what to do.

So train a man such that he wants to leave,

Treat him so well that he doesn’t. “

Here comes the question, train to what extent. The answer is best possible extent. Because if:-

 

“You give a man a fish to eat, he will live for a day,

But if you teach him to catch fish, he will live for life.”

Translate this to your production, if you train a man well he would be useful to you for as long as your startup lasts.

Secondly  how to treat a person well so that he feels part of the process. Consider following :

  1. Respect an individual, he may or may not be of your intellect level, but he may stand with you when it matters. That slight respect has a large dividend pay back.
  2. Space is human need and it varies from time to time as situation arises. For example a person is finding it difficult to adjust to the office routine because he stays very far from office, allow him some time to ensure he comes on time, but do not cut his pay for that. Person needs leave for sister’s wedding, may be for 10 days, give it without questioning, he would stand by you without questioning day and night when required, because he knows if  a personal needs arises in future too, he will be heard and actioned. Someone is going through bad phase in life; praise him for still coming to office rather than checking on his performance during that period.
  3. Make team building a natural process then a forced one, let them cultivate and have their own ways of achieving the goals of company. Make them believe it’s one big family, and we all grow or perish together, leaving one or two bad fish, the rest will click.
  4. Lastly the leadership you provide is what matters. If you are like don’t worry what I do, but you do what I say, then it could be a disaster.  Rather if you show the path and walk along some distance with them, they will cover the full distance without you but for you.

Please add or contribute constructive Suggestions.

Experienced Brand ! Digital Marketing ! CRM Expert Plus Leadership ! Digital Space Guest Faculty

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Cdr Sanjeev Deshpande, (Retd)