The person answering phones and greeting clients when they first enter the center sets the standard for how clients are treated at the center. That’s an incredibly important position! It only takes about 3 seconds for someone to form an opinion about you. It has also been said that when communicating, the tone of voice accounts for 38% of the effectiveness of our communication, while body language and gestures make up 55%. It should go without saying that the person responsible for answering phones and greeting the clients is a vital part of the standards of excellence Care Net Centers are known for.

If you’re the one answering phones and greeting patients in your center, I pray these following tips will encourage you and remind you that you play a vital role in your center’s work. 

And if you a director or manager on the look-out for new information to equip and inspire your team, I hope you will pass these tips on to your staff and volunteers.

Recall the Passion that brought you here
Take a few moments before you start your work to recall the moment God called you to where you are. Take that memory with you throughout each day, remembering God’s grace and guidance in your own life as you deal with upset, confused, or panicked clients. Recall the love you’ve received when you were at your lowest – love from both God and others. Be confident that God will guide your words and actions as you answer tough questions, provide information that might not be popular or simply reassure each client that their experience at the center will be filled with compassion, hope and help.

Prepare for the work
The person answering the phone and greeting clients at the center is the ‘gatekeeper’ of the ministry. From the moment the phone is first answered or the first client of the day walks through the door, the mission and vision of your center is being put to the test. Be prepared by making sure you’ve had proper training. If you feel like you aren’t adequately equipt to deal with something, ask for help. Prepare for future communication by practicing with those who have more experience and gracefully receiving constructive feedback. And finally, prepare yourself spiritually by praying not just prior to coming into the center, but saying a silent prayer each time the phone rings or the center door opens. Use this quick, silent prayer to bind any fear or confusion.  Seek God’s direction with every word, every thought, and every smile.

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