No receptionist doesn’t mean no reception


Inspired or dull?: First impressions count, don’t let yours go to waste. Photo: Voyagerix/


You do.

First impressions count, and this is your first point of internal marketing. It communicates how you go about your business and sets the tone for your company. In every office design, this space is crucial to transmit a positive message about how you value your customers and your employees.


Do include company signage: Size and position matters. You should be able to see the company sign before you open the front door. We generally make the height of the smallest letter on the company sign at least 80 millimetres high.

Do pick specialised waiting chairs: Choose furniture designed for a commercial environment. Nothing says “unprofessional” like a dining room chair. Classic examples used for decades are the Arne Jacobsen Swan Chair or the Le Corbusier Grand Confort chair.

Do think about lighting: Lighting changes the way a space is perceived. A subtle lighting change from cool fluorescent lights in a foyer to the softer glow of a pendant light in your reception area will help put visitors at ease. Hang a pendant light low over the corner coffee table or introduce recessed lighting in the ceiling.


Don’t greet clients with a view of the rest of the office: The day-to-day habits of employees can’t be monitored around the clock. If you don’t want a potential client to know John had a tuna sandwich for lunch, create a division between the rest of the office and the reception area. Laser cut screens, planter boxes, hanging felt mobiles – even a plain old wall will work.

Don’t forget the mail: To be blunt, mail left on the floor in reception says “we don’t care enough about our business to bother sorting this out”.  Ensure there is a dedicated space for it to be stored.

Don’t make clients find you: If you don’t have a receptionist, plan how you will be alerted to a visitor’s arrival. All of the above will be completely forgotten if they unable to announce their presence and are made to wait. Or worse, if they have to walk up behind you at your desk.

The articles on the Charter Build blog are written by the CB team and edited by Jane Bright, our Design Director. If you have any questions regarding our content, syndication of our content or content submissions, please contact Jane via email For notification on new blog posts either subscribe (top of sidebar on this page) or follow Charter Build @charterbuild and Jane Bright @1JaneBright.