I was sitting in a waiting room not so long ago reading a 2014 Hello magazine and getting lost in wondering what these people were doing now when a young man approached the reception desk to book in for his appointment.
The young man had checked in himself with his mum present to support communication if necessary, the receptionist recognised that the young man wore hearing aids in both ears and had a speech impediment which presented itself as a stutter. I could see that the receptionist felt unsure of how to communicate and feeling unsure of how to handle the situation had spoken directly to his mum.
I introduced myself and spoke about Visits Unlimited and how we support the process of developing confidence to communicate with individuals who have a disability and also highlighted that many people live with a ‘hidden’ disability and that more than likely they will be coming across more than one person a day that they would never know lived with some form of disability.
We briefly identified why she felt nervous and unconfident in communicating with this young man, then we created some strategies that she could easily tap into to support her to deal with those and instead recognise this young man’s capability, his need to be independent, his wanting to learn to manage his own appointments because these are big accomplishes to his confidence developing.
We did some fast work around body language and how to use it to show confidence, to show connection and to show that he is important at that moment and that there’s a really good reason mum’s in the background. We worked around her main obstacle which was not knowing how to communicate with an individual that she recognises requires hearing support.
Your receptionist is so important to your business.
One of the most important roles within any business is the receptionist, the first impression of your company or business comes from here. Your clients, visitors and customers will either feel cared for and respected or herded to their seat where they blend into lack of importance. Reception is the gateway to how you want others to see the service or experience you provide and it’s important that your front line team receive the dynamic training that allows them the skills, awareness and time to apply great quality service.
A few minutes was all it took to alleviate the receptionists lack of confidence and support her to feel more open, less self conscious about adapting communication approaches and recognising the importance of her role in providing a safe and respected experience for any individual. That few minutes will create a foundation for her to continue gaining more confidence.
How we can help you.
If you or your team would like to be supported to develop a powerful experience for individuals who are disabled, then we can provide packages of assessments of your area and how to make cost effective and reasonable adjustments to make your space welcoming, friendly and accessible. We can provide you with an awareness of your clients and share with you some highly effective communication techniques that can easily be adaptable when communicating with anyone who requires extra support, please contact Katie Clarke at Visits Unlimited.
The skills, strategies and techniques that we teach and provide are transferable and helps you to create a sustainable model of communication management that developed confidence and helps to manage all situations.