Making a good first impression at work is about more than just a firm handshake. Your office does a lot to shape the perception of your business. So when clients walk in the front door, you want to make sure that you’re presenting an office that’s every bit as impressive as your services. And we have a few tips.
The Reception Area
Your reception area should be professional but welcoming. Make sure guests are greeted as soon as they enter and that they have somewhere comfortable to wait.
Don’t be afraid to show your business’ creativity in your reception space with some unique decor or bright colour choices. However, make sure it all fits with your business’ brand.
When it comes time to sit down with your clients, make sure your meeting room or office space isn’t intimidating. You don’t want clients to feel uncomfortable at the prospect of working with you. Rather, you want your office to emphasise collaboration. You can achieve this by avoiding large desks or tables that create a strong physical barrier between you and any clients. Instead, consider setting up a more casual meeting space with comfortable chairs. You want to talk with your clients as if they were friends, rather than competitors.
A dark or poorly lit workplace is bad for employees and creates a bad impression on clients. A workplace should be well lit, ideally with as much natural light as possible. If natural light isn’t available, try to use soft light and avoid harsh fluorescent lighting.
Did you know that colours can have an impact on how clients perceive your business? For instance, blue is often associated with trustworthiness and strength, whereas purple is thought to mean creativity and imagination. Take some time to research colour theory and learn about how to use colours in your office to your advantage.
Along with colour, the materials used around your office can also subtly affect a client’s perception of your business. If your business has a focus on sustainability, make this value clear by using recycled materials in and around your office. Similarly, if you’re about innovation and new technology, choose sleek materials that are associated with forward thinking. Make sure the materials you choose do not convey the wrong message or conflict with your company’s values.
Of course, no amount of colour theory and carefully selected materials can give client’s a good first impression if your office is unclean. Make sure you hire a commercial cleaning service so that your office is always sparkling. Hiring professional cleaners also comes with plenty of other benefits too.
Think about what clients will see and experience when they first walk in the door. It shouldn’t be messy piles of paper, objects on the floor and unpleasant smells.
A workplace that is deathly silent is off-putting, while one that is rowdy is just as bad. You should aim for a happy medium where there is some noise to indicate that employees are collaborating but still working hard.
A good way to achieve this is by playing music in the office and encouraging employees to work with one another.
Music can also benefit your business by boosting employee morale and productivity.
Finally, just as you may offer refreshments to guests visiting your home, do the same at work. When clients arrive, make sure they are offered a selection of beverages (water, tea, coffee).
If you intend to have a long meeting with clients, ensure there is food available. This doesn’t need to be fancy — some simple but professionally made sandwiches, along with a few sweet treats is sufficient.
By offering refreshments to your clients, you make them feel valued, as well as part of your business’ family.
Use the tips above to improve your clients’ first impressions of your business from the second they walk in the door. Make sure they feel welcomed and can see that you are a professional enterprise with motivated employees.