When I was younger I often visited an uncle who had lots of coin to spend. I loved his house. It was big, tastefully furnished with everything seemingly perfect. I had access to all but one space. It was edged in one of the corners of the living room. Small black fridge, above it a cabinet made of glass and minimal wood with a lock and key that was verboten. My uncle would religiously go to the corner after work, pour himself what I believed to be bad juice (all my aunt’s doing). Years later I laugh at the thought. My uncle had a fantastic home bar. Continue reading “Setting up the home bar”
Please do not paint your wall any shade of white. Unless you plan on mixing it up with another colour. Or you are a bank. If you insist on it, play around with the finish. Let the theme communicate the company’s culture.
Very important. Do not let your reception look like a hideous 1960s government office but do not go to the extreme either. Use natural light to complement the artificial light. Go bright. Balance that out with flowers and beautiful vases. Read about vases here. We are not about to escape the concrete jungle with the many buildings coming up every day, the sun and plants will bring life to the reception.
If there was ever a time to let the Michelangelo in you, it is on your wall. Have art pieces that stand out. The more creative they are the better. The guests have something to stare at as the receptionist confirms their appointment. There’re many vivid and captivating paintings that could be bought locally or online. Or if it comes to it, download uncopyrighted painting or photos from the interweb, blow them up and voila! – You have a Matisse or an Adams in your office.
Another piece of art that you can play with is the clock. Who needs it? The wall. Believe it or not, people will still use clocks if they are available.
It might hard to spell out the rules of etiquette at the reception for each and every guest. An announcement board is perfect for spelling out the rules of the land.
Kindly have your phone on silent mode
Smile at the receptionist
You can also have important information that you feel your clients need to know.
Media and Entertainment
Think about two people here; the readers and the rest of us. Prolific readers will probably have their own reading material. Have newspapers or magazines that people enjoy. If not sure on what to get have something that complements what you do. If it is a law firm, Nairobi Law Monthly would be ideal. An ad agency can have all kinds of material. A hospital should can use this opportunity to educate people on matters health.
The rest of us will need a television to keep us entertained. Netflix would be nice. Too soon? Al Jazeera or CNN will do.
Lastly, a water dispenser will keep us busy (and healthy). I’d personally prefer your reception to have a menu made specifically of smoked salmon with lemon butter on sourdough bread, egg mayonnaise and chopped shallot and watercress sandwiches (on white bread) and an assortment of raisin scones with clotted cream and strawberry preserve. Darjeeling tea with cold milk on the side. Thanks much.
The only thing more frigid than a cold room is a dull reception. This is the first space that welcomes people into your office and it is easy to tell the culture of an office from the reception (and receptionist). Unfortunately, décor for this space is usually an afterthought. Light brown desks, black chairs closely places to each other and a whole lot of jejune is what we had in most receptions. Then came the wave of happy. Continue reading “Receptions: From Dull to Glam (I)”