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How to Be a Professional Receptionist

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Professional receptions speak volumes about how a business is run. A customer's first impression of any business is through the receptionist according to "First Impression Management." Receptionists require certain skills to be considered professional and an asset to any company. To become a professional receptionist learn the basics of etiquette, dress and cleanliness.

Learn your job duties inside and out. Computer knowledge, filing, phone operation and memo writing are all key factors in a receptionist's job. Doing these tasks efficiently and without pause will speak to your professional demeanor.

Express your polite nature. Greet customers at the door and offer to help in any way you can. Being helpful by directing customers to the appropriate floor or office and thanking them for visiting is a way to make people feel special when they enter your business.

Answer phones promptly with a smile. Callers can actually hear your enthusiasm through your physical smile when you answer the phone. Use your company's full name and your personal name when answering so that people know exactly who they are talking to. Route your callers to the correct department carefully, avoiding misrouting calls.

Produce professional correspondence by using proper grammar and company letterhead. Use respect to your intended recipient by using "Sir" or "Madam" in the opening and finish the correspondence with "Sincerely" or "Best Regards" to close.

Accurately record and deliver messages, memos and other notes that are required throughout the day. For example, if your boss wants you to order office supplies while you are swamped with phone calls; write the specifics down in a notebook or other organized, easily accessible area so you won't forget to complete the task.

Clean your reception area, keeping your desk free of clutter and your desk drawers in order. Disorder will make you seem unprofessional and disorganized.

Dress in professional clothing. Jeans and tshirts send the message you are not serious about your profession. Wear clothing that is clean and wrinkle-free and avoid excessive makeup. Depending on your office policy, dress casual and dress clothing are ideal for a professional receptionist.


Sharin Griffin has been a freelance writer since 2009, specializing in health-related articles. She has worked in the health-care industry as a certified nursing assistant and medical technician. Griffin's medical expertise encompasses bariatrics and geriatric care, with an emphasis on general medicine. She is completing an associate degree in health-care administration from Axia University.