Don'ts When Interviewing for a Job from a Receptionist

3 years ago
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By night I blog but by day I am an office manager.

I started as a receptionist and by a stroke of great luck I was promoted to administrative assistant which lead me to office manager.  Despite the title, I am still a receptionist.  My desk is in the lobby, I greet people, schedule rooms, and let vendors in. Well, all that plus more but for a good portion of the day I am a receptionist.

I happen to love my job but like any great jobs there are certain aspects that are not my favorite.  Greeting people coming for an interview is one of those things.  Don't get me wrong, I work with some fantastic people who once came for an interview but there is a fairly large percentage of would be employees who don't make the cut and I can usually tell their outcome based on how they treat me.

I am no longer surprised by the rudeness I encounter from applicants nor how professional and nice they will be when the person doing the interview shows up to collect them for the interview.  What most fail to realize is that the manager doing your interview may ask my opinion of you or I will tell them.  When you are rude to the person who greets you, it does not look good and speaks volumes on your character.

On the upside of being in this position I have some pretty funny stories to share.

My office, like many, is secured which means you have to be buzzed in to the main lobby off the elevators. There is a phone on the wall to call in if I am not at the desk or if I am not watching the door.  Tip: Receptionists do not spend the day watching the door.  I work at my computer on various things that need my attention and you standing at the door will not make me look up.  Yes, tapping on the glass will but there is a sign, pointing to the phone that you are suppose to pick up and use.  Not only does this get my attention but will allow me to know why you are there or if I am not at my desk will summon someone to open the door to let you in.

Oddly, most will tap on the window.  I will push the button to let you in and even motion you to come forward but some, would be applicants, will stand there for several minutes getting mad at me because they are pulling instead of pushing or even just standing there thinking the door will open on its own.  There are a few so confident that they walk right into the locked doors.  That does get my attention but trying not to laugh at a face squashed at the window is a challenge.

I know that they are embarrassed that they could not figure out the push not pull thing but there is no reason to take that out on the receptionist or me.

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Coming prepared to a job interview means bringing a pen and your resume.  Yes, the recruiter probably emailed your resume, and the dozens or so that are also interviewing for the same job, to the hiring manager so don't you think handing them a copy would be beneficial?  I promise you, they did not print your resume.  They may have glanced over it on the computer but they did not print it.   Having a copy to hold will help you be memorable.

Along with your resume, bring a pen.  Yes, I have plenty of pens to hand out for you to do paperwork and will of course but having a pen shows that you are ready and prepared.

Something to keep in the back of your mind, you are not special.  There are dozens of people, just as qualified, applying for this job - how do you want to be remembered?


For more stories and tips on what not to do read the rest here.



My opinions are my own and do not represent my company.  


iNeed a Playdate is a fact, not just the name of my blog.

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