As the first person your customers communicate with – on the phone and upon entering the spa, the receptionist needs to make a good first impression. A great receptionist is someone on the front lines who has a professional appearance and attitude. Not many people know this, but I have spent 8 years out of my 24 years of industry experience as a spa receptionist. I know exactly what it takes to select a great receptionist, and will give you some pointers on what to look for as you go through the interview process.
First thing to look for in a qualified spa receptionist is a tidy, put together appearance. Your spa or salon is a place of beauty, health and tranquility, so having a receptionist with chipped nails, or messy oily hair will create disharmony in the overall image of your business. By any means, your employees don’t have to look like supermodels, but excellent hygiene is a must! A tidy and put-together person will also be wonderful at organizing the desk, and keeping the work area clean and manageable. This type of employee will never write an important phone message on a post-it in a pile of papers.
During the interview, you can role-play with the candidate, and him or her take down a message. Look for legible handwriting, correct spelling, and take notice of the tone of voice. A good phone presence is a crucial skill. You can trust that an empathetic person will be a wonderful listener who can accommodate your clients’ requests, and will help work out any slip-ups that may occur, such as double-booking, or other issues. It is important to choose a team player who shows enthusiasm in discovering the spa’s treatments and products. A good receptionist will ask many questions to get better acquainted with the different types of facials, and massages, and will try treatments to know how they feel. First-hand experience with treatments and products is the best way to passionately talk about them, and suggest them to clients.
A very important quality in a front-desk person is the ability to multi-task without feeling overwhelmed, anxious, or frustrated. A candidate who is well-versed in a multitude of computer programs and apps is an asset to your organization. Not only will this receptionist quickly acquaint him/herself with your spa booking software, but he or she will be able to manage multiple tasks with ease. Someone who is technologically savvy is wonderful at implementing the newest apps and programs to help take the clutter out of, what may seem to be confusing, tasks.
Look for candidates with a humble and agreeable personality. A person who easily takes directions, and can handle constructive criticism will be a breeze to work with for both you and your clients. Look for someone with great integrity who can show initiative and improvise, and avoid those who will walk past a candy wrapper on the floor, and use the excuse “that’s not part of my job description” to justify not tossing it into the trash can.
These simple tips are what I believe will help you select the right person for your front desk. I have worked as a receptionist at the same spa for 8 years, prior to joining my mother to start our own skin care brand. My previous employer, co-workers, clients and I still keep in touch, because that job was my passion and my priority. I never brought in negativity, and I always made everyone I worked with feel loved and well taken care of. The most important attributes to look for are integrity and a good nature, and the rest of the technicalities can be learned in time!