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How Your Reception Office can Impress Today, and Still Impress Tomorrow

making it quite clear that they cost a great deal less than the leather upholstered you can help to improve their perception of you as a company. Don't forget that for many potential customers,

Your brand image is everything, and you want that to be backed up by a good first impression of the lay-out and apparent efficiency of your office. Not ostentatious to the point of being vulgar, and not so expensive-looking as to give the impression of profligacy. Potential customers like neither of these things.  You must try to make sure that the physical impression you give represents the ideals and image which your company is trying to give: that it reflects your brand image.

If your company is dynamic, positive, forward thinking and vibrant, then the decor and general surroundings need to show that vibrancy, and appear dynamic.  How this is achieved will depend largely on the space that you have available for your reception office area, and in some cases this might be fairly small, limiting you in many ways. Having said that, large spaces can create just as many challenges, and can project a false image of your company as sacrificing space and resources to your reception area where it might be more profitably be expended elsewhere.

Another point worth making is the fact that, although it is easy to imagine ways in which your business can portray a vibrant image or a calming environment, you will need to convey the impression that you care about your clients. Simple things can help to improve the chances of giving this impression, but it takes careful thinking to get it right.

For example, as customers walk into your reception office, is the receptionist sitting behind a large desk presenting something of a barricade, with pens chained to the desk and hard plastic chairs available, making it quite clear that they cost a great deal less than the leather upholstered, padded armchair that the receptionist is enjoying?

An open reception area, with a receptionist slightly angled or to one side can reduce any impression of confrontation, and by having a comfortable lounge or seating area for customers, you can help to improve their perception of you as a company. Don't forget that for many potential customers, the receptionist and the space in which he or she works is their first introduction to your company.

Have you considered taking the opportunity to provide reading material or promotional literature, and including some coffee tables of other occasional tables with promotional products or literature on you are providing the ideal opportunity for customers to enter your reception office, feel comfortable and at ease, and enjoy taking on board some of your products or services in a more relaxed and open way.

Along with the furniture and reading material comes with the training of the receptionist and an offer of drinks when they are seated. Make them not only comfortable, but also feel as though they are valuable to you.  You can also take this opportunity to impress your environmental policies upon your visitors.
Increasingly today, people are aware of ways in which businesses and retail outlets use energy in poor ways, and it is not only business managers who are aware of what is meant by a carbon footprint.

You might have included a number of large open windows in your office design, but as a result of poor planning have to cover them with blinds to prevent the dazzle of bright sunshine on display screens and the like. You then have to power up several dozen powerful halogen lamps to light the office:  what message is this conveying to your visitors about your environmental integrity or awareness?

Instead, take the opportunity to design your reception area to maximize light, but minimize reflections on screens, maximize sunlight, thus minimizing on heating, maximizing on natural materials, but minimizing on their implicit carbon footprint. Using local materials rather than those shipped from overseas is a good start. It should then be possible to make these points known to visiting clients and customers through the incidental distribution of promotional products and services in the seating area.

Another point to consider is maintenance, and clearly it will be important to make sure that the reception area can be kept clean and tidy fairly easily, since this will likely be the busiest part of the office area, with people walking in from outside, doors constantly opening, with the potential for scuffs, dirt, litter and dust.

For this reason, take care to plan your reception office area in such a way that it doesn't create problems, such as carpeting right up to the front door, coffee machines placed on pale colored carpets, and myriad ledges for the purpose of collecting dust.  If you bear in mind your first impression, your maintenance costs and work, as well as your impact on the environment, then the lasting impression is likely to be as positive as it deserves.

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You now understand how a good reception office layout design can project your corporate branding and the better of your environmental policies. Visit Corporate Environmentsfor more details of how a good reception office layout can convey a positive and lasting first impression upon your visitors.

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