What do your visitors think when they come to your business?  What impression do they have when they leave?  It only takes a few seconds for visitors to feel they made the right decision by gracing your doorstep.  Are they greeted with professionalism and an attitude that says “Welcome, we’re glad you’re here.  How may I help you?”  Is the place of business clean, organized and professional…just like the staff should be?  Think back to whether you ever made a beeline to the door because you got such a negative feeling after visiting a particular office, warehouse or other place of business.  Well, here are a few tips to ensure your guests are glad they stopped in: 

To stand or not to stand:  Whether male or female, a well-mannered person rises when either a superior or elderly person enters the workplace.  Rise for clients as well, particularly if you are receiving someone in an upper level position.  It shows you have professional polish, good manners and consider them important enough to stand to greet them.  Rising is a way to show respect.  Other times, it’s fine to remain seated  if it is an assistant or other coworkers.

Early arrivals:  If you have an office assistant, ask him/her to make the guest comfortable.  If not, come out and greet even if they’re early.  Offer a drink and a chair, explain that you will be back in 5-10 minutes or whatever time their appointment is.  If you are actually able to meet with them a little early, go ahead and do so versus making them wait. 

Waiting Beyond Appointment Time:  Never keep someone waiting more than 5-6 minutes past appointed time.  People are smart enough to know a Power Play when they see one (or if someone is just plain being rude).  If, for some reason, you are unable to meet within ten minutes, apologize profusely and have someone else get the ball rolling.  Ensure that your assistant has all pertinent information.  Get with them as fast as you can!

Warmth, sincerety and good business manners can carry you a long way when your schedule doesn’t go like you planned.  Practicing the Golden Rule can keep them coming back!

 For more information on a seminars or personal coaching, contact Rita Rocker, Chief Communications and Image Officer, Transformation Academy, 402-968-3250 rita@transformationacademy.com, www.transformationacademy.

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