Support staff play a vital role in many businesses and are quite frequently left the unsung heroes within organisations. In the first part of a two-part blog we speak to the lovely Valeria, a member of our support staff team. We sent Head of Client Services, Jane Streat, to track her down and find out more about her role and what it means to her.
Jane: Hi Valeria, Thanks for taking the time out to talk to me. I know you’re an incredibly busy person! So tell me about your role.
Valeria: I work as part of the Lexington Reception Support Team, which means that I could be working at any one of our client sites on any given day to cover staff absence, an increase in demand for reception staff or special events. It means I work with a number of different client organisations and industries.
Jane: What challenges does this movement present?
Valeria: Exciting ones! I love it, it means I need to get to know and understand more than one client, how they work and their culture. Making the effort to get to know a client and their culture is vital to offer that seamless service. The common denominator in the picture is providing excellent customer service, the skills for which are transferable between clients. All of our clients have one common goal – to provide their employees and guests with that outstanding level of customer interaction, which keeps them loyal to the business. This is why they choose us to provide that front of house service – we’re the best at it!
Jane: I love your enthusiasm! I agree, it’s a great industry to work in and passion is a definite requirement if we are to provide an authentic and five-star service. So tell me about the benefits and advantages of working in the support team.
Valeria: I love the variety, the fact I could be with a very corporate client on a Monday and more relaxed/creative client on a Tuesday. What works at one site may not work at another so I need to be flexible and adapt my approach to each client. The exposure also means I have a much wider view of Lexington’s operation and vision as well, as the facilities management industry as a whole. It has also helped with my personal development. I tend to work where it’s very busy. This pushed me in the early days and helped me develop my confidence and the way I dealt with customers to an exceptional level, which I am extremely proud of.
Jane: Are you on the fly every day or do you get the opportunity to spend more than a few days with each client?
Valeria: This really depends on the client’s needs and requests. Sometimes it’ll be for one day and on other occasions it’ll be for several weeks.
Jane: Every workplace is different – how do you ensure you adapt quickly to meet the needs of each client/team?
Valeria: As an individual you have to be very flexible. You need to be able to adapt quickly to work in different environments and different cultures. A successful support team member needs to be incredible with people and able to build relationships quickly in order to understand client’s requests and manage expectations.
Jane: What ten things should support staff consider to make sure they are successful and meet each clients needs?
1. Understand the company culture
2. Be adaptable
3. Be receptive
4. Be proactive
5. Be professional and represent Lexington
6. Be respectful
7. Have a positive attitude
8. Listen carefully
9. Ask questions
10. Take notes for each site
Jane: Valeria thank you so much for your time, it’s great to hear how much you enjoy working for Lexington and our clients.
Valeria: My pleasure!
Check back in a few weeks for the second part of our blog, which looks at the commercial benefits to having a support staff within your organisation.