What Soft Skills and Qualities Are Important for a Receptionist?

Isabella Roland • 24 Aug 2022 • 4 min read

Important skills and qualities a receptionist must have


As any busy business knows, having a good receptionist can be an absolute lifesaver. From capturing every call that comes your business’s way to ensuring bookings and appointments are monitored correctly, the many essential skills of a receptionist are highly sought after.

Of course, this means that you need to be careful when hiring someone for such a position so you can be sure they have the receptionist soft skills necessary to do the job justice. After all, experience can only get a receptionist so far if they lack core the receptionist skills and qualities expected of them.

So, to make sure you hire someone who understands the skills of a receptionist, and why it might actually be more beneficial for your business to outsource it’s receptionist role to a Live Answering Service instead, here are the major qualities of a receptionist to look out for.

1. Good communication

First and foremost, it’s absolutely essential that a good receptionist has both clear written and verbal communication skills. Otherwise, they’re going to have a much harder time guiding, speaking with, and empathizing with customers.

It goes without saying that a receptionist’s role involves a constant stream and exchange of information between them and numerous customer, and being able to receive and process these messages in a clear and organized manner is vital to meeting the demands of such a position.


2. Multitasking skills

While often pointed out as the sort of skill that results in more complex jobs only getting half done, as a receptionist, knowing how to multitask is an absolute must to capture the sheer volume of information being presented to you.

It’s safe to say that, when your business gets busy, phones are going to be ringing off the hook, so you need to be sure that you have a receptionist who’s an expert at juggling multiple tasks at the same time. This could be anything from holding a conversation while taking notes to retrieving important client information while remaining on the phone.

Either way, this is one of the qualities of a receptionist that you shouldn’t overlook.


3. Problem solving skills

For those who’ve never taken on the role before, it might come as a surprise to know that a receptionist’s job involves a lot of problem solving, specifically around the needs of customers getting in touch with your business.

Usually, when someone contacts a business, they’re going to need your help with something. Therefore, a receptionist needs to be able to understand the needs in question and then provide the right solution, potentially multiple times if a customer’s problem persists.


4. Calm, patience, and empathy

As we’ve already established, the majority of customers contacting your business will need your help solving a problem, which is not always a simple task, meaning your receptionist needs to have the calm, patience, and empathy to handle any customer issue without said individual becoming frustrated.

Whether it’s a routine service or distressingly urgent, a receptionist has to be prepared to deal with an entire spectrum of emotions every day, making it crucial to establish with your customers that your business can help them. Being calm, patient, and empathetic will help to portray this and lend a much-needed human touch to the experience.


5. Listening skills

It should really go without saying, but one of the cornerstone skills a receptionist must have is the ability to listen actively to customers. Not only will this make it easier to understand and solve their problem, but it will also make your customers feel heard and understood.

Simply put, a customer is going to know when someone is not actively listening to their needs, especially if your receptionist needs to repeatedly ask them to repeat themselves, so make your hire has this crucial skill mastered.


6. Conflict resolution

In customer support and service, conflict resolution is going to come up whether you like it or not. Frankly, having no unhappy customers only exists in a perfect world, whereas, in reality, all companies are going to receive their fair share of complaints.

Even so, it’s important for any receptionist to maintain a level head and emotional control when handling these types of calls. Getting angry back will only escalate the situation and could Very well lead to them turning elsewhere for their needs. But by resolving the conflict well, angry customers may feel appreciated and valued instead.


7. Confidence

Last, but not least, another major receptionist skill is to have the confidence necessary to keep customers engaged and calm, showing them that you receptionist knows exactly what they’re talking about.

Simply put, a confident answer makes a confident customer, helping them to place more trust in your company and helping you to provide the best experience possible so they keep you on their radar for future services.


Outsourcing your receptionist needs with VoiceNation

So, now you know what to look out for when hiring a new receptionist. However, this is no guarantee that you’ll be able to hire someone who fits all of these criteria straight off the back. Not to mention all the other costs that come with hiring new staff members in general.

Which is exactly why you should consider VoiceNation for all your receptionist needs!

With a team of expertly trained and professional Virtual Receptionists on hand to meet your every needs, VoiceNation can ensure that your business never misses a customer call while meeting all of their needs with top-tier customer service.

Get in touch today to learn more about what service we can offer your business, and don’t forget to browse the rest of our blog for similar article to this one. We have pieces on the 5 qualities to look for in a virtual receptionist and what a virtual receptionist is.

By Isabella Roland

Isabella Roland is a Marketing Assistant at VoiceNation. She is currently pursuing a Bachelors of Arts in Interdisciplinary History and a Minor in Business Administration at Georgia Gwinnett College and often spends time at school as an active member of the GGC Honors Program. In her free time, she can be found reading, exploring, or cooking.