A bad receptionist does more than frustrate and alienate the customers on the phone or in the office with them. A receptionist that fails to connect with customers or do his or her job properly can hurt your business long-term by causing complex issues with customer trust and your company reputation that are hard to undo.
A good receptionist can help grow your business and increase customer satisfaction while improving the customer experience, but a bad receptionist can put you out of business if you’re not careful.
Here are 5 ways a bad receptionist can hurt your business today and in the long run.
5 Ways a Bad Receptionist Can Hurt Your Business
1. Letting good leads get away
The first way a bad receptionist can hurt your business is by letting good leads get away. If someone calls your company with a question about a product or service you provide and your receptionist can’t answer the question or is dismissive, that person will look elsewhere for what they need. Letting good leads get away is a sign that a receptionist is not invested in his or her job and it’s costing a lot of money in the process.
2. Mismanaging customer and caller information
If you’re struggling with your receptionist forgetting to deliver messages and correct information to you, it’s a sign you’re dealing with someone who just isn’t cut out for the job. Part of being a productive receptionist is closely managing and organizing information. If things are repeatedly falling through the cracks, it’s time to look elsewhere for administrative help.
3. Treating callers like pests
A sure sign of a bad receptionist is disinterest in, or even contempt for, callers and customers. We’ve all seen the stereotype in movies – the bored receptionist sits behind the desk, feet up on the counter, filing her nails and rolling her eyes. Anyone who calls is a nuisance; anyone who approaches the desk is intruding. Receptionists that treat callers and customers like pests will run your customers off with quickness, so make sure your receptionists are treating your customers with friendliness and respect!
4. Over-booking or scheduling appointments
Few things make a business owner’s life harder than mismanaged appointments. If meetings are overlapping where they shouldn’t be and customer appointments are bleeding into one another because of receptionist error, you’re experiencing one of the side effects of dealing with a bad receptionist. If you’re consistently over-booked or having trouble getting your receptionist to report cancellations, consider looking for a virtual receptionist who can answer your calls and manage your appointments seamlessly online.
5. Increasing wait times for callers
Finally, receptionists that take a long time to answer the phone or leave customers on hold for long periods of time end up increasing wait times for callers and reducing your company’s productivity. That hurts your reputation with customers. A good receptionist will work quickly on the phone without making the caller feel rushed. They won’t leave callers on hold for long periods of time and instead will offer to call back. Anything that can be done to make sure a customer doesn’t have to spend time waiting on the phone is a bonus for your business!