Friday Professional Group

First Impressions Matter

That title might sound a little obvious, coming from the First Impressions Coordinator, but I sometimes wonder if this is an idea that not everyone on the job hunt has thought about. There are lots of great articles out there about making a good first impression on interviewers, how to nail a job interview, even how to get your resume in front of the recruiter to begin with – but lots of them lack one tip which I really feel more people should know about.

Be nice to the receptionist.

Not exactly rocket science, I know – but there’s a reason I’m reiterating it. The reason I’m called the “First Impressions Coordinator” goes two ways –I’m in charge of the first impression our company leaves on you, but I’m also in charge of conveying your first impression to the people who are in charge of making the decisions like “who, out of this pile of resumes, should we bring in for an interview?” 

Let’s say I have two candidates with comparative amounts of education and experience who come in to drop off a resume (a situation which is actually pretty common). One of them greets me with “I wanna see a recruiter”; visibly rolls their eyes when I tell them that unfortunately our recruiters generally don’t take walk-ins, but that I’d be happy to pass along their resume; won’t make eye contact; doesn’t want to answer my questions about the type of role they’re looking for; and leaves without saying goodbye. The other one says hello and asks how my day is going; asks to leave a resume to be considered; is polite and thorough when answering questions; takes a business card; and says “have a nice day!” on their way out.

Who would you recommend the recruiters call when they’re reviewing the resumes?

When you’re dealing with a recruiting agency, the recruiters have to be really aware of the type of candidate they are going to be working with on a job search and presenting to potential opportunities. If the first impression that you’re leaving is of someone surly, rude, snobby or haughty – well, you may not have disqualified yourself, but you’ve definitely added yourself an extra job-search hurdle. I completely understand that job searching is tough – I’ve been there! My advice is just to remember when you’re going into places you’d like to work with – recruiting agencies or other offices alike – that the receptionist is part of the team who is there to help you. Leave the best impression of yourself with the front desk staff member, just as you would do in an interview, and you’ll have gone a long way towards getting that first call back.

-Rae, First Impressions Coordinator


#250, 736 - 6th Avenue SW
Calgary, Alberta   T2P 3T7
Ph: (403) 233-0499

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