Welcoming a visitor

There is a saying: “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” This is especially true when you are welcoming a visitor to your place of work. Whether it’s for an impromptu chat or a scheduled meeting, it’s important to make your visitors feel comfortable when they enter your office.

You may be wondering why it is so important to welcome a visitor correctly. Everything an employee does—from how they answer the phone to how they deal with clients—reflects on the company’s image as well as their own professional image. Treating guests with respect and courtesy at all times will ensure that you represent your company in a positive manner.

The way you should welcome a visitor will depend on what the purpose of the visit is. Is it a casual visit, or a formal one? Casual visits can include someone popping by for a quick chat. Formal visits are more common, and occur when a meeting has been set up.

Usually, the first point of contact for a visitor is the receptionist. Their job is to act as a gatekeeper and manage visitors. They often have to deal with many people at a time, while making sure staff members don’t leave their guests waiting too long. If your company has a friendly, efficient receptionist, your guests will have already had a pleasant greeting upon their arrival. The next part is up to you!

Key phrases when welcoming a visitor

If you know the person well, it will be easy to make small talk. However, if you are meeting someone for the first time, it can be awkward. Here are some phrases that will help you welcome a visitor and make them feel more comfortable.

  • “Hello, Mr. Smith. Welcome to our office.”
  • “It’s nice to see you again!”
  • “Thanks for coming down to meet with me today.”
  • “Is this your first time in the city? How do you like it so far?”
  • “Please follow me, I’ll show you where the meeting room is.”
  • “Did you find your way here okay? I hope the directions I gave you were helpful.”
  • “How is your day going so far?”
  • “Is the weather holding up out there?”
  • “Can I get you a tea, coffee or glass of water?”
  • “While we wait for everyone else to join us, can I offer you a drink or a snack?”
  • “Let me hang your coat for you.”
  • “Will you need Wi-Fi access, a projector or anything else for our meeting today?”