Oh front desk secretary¡¦.How I love thee! I worship the very seat you sit in. The very computer you play solitaire in. The very smile you give me (and probably every other person) every morning as soon as I get out of the elevator in.
In Korea, it¡¯s all about the front desk lady. You can immediately pass judgement about a company’s reputation as soon as you see the front desk lady. At any given company, they will hire and station the prettiest girl at the front of their offices simply to greet guests. ¡°It¡¯s better for business that way¡± says Mr. Kim, 44 year old office manager (only revealing his surname). ¡°We want our guests, especially prospective clients, to immediately think we have the best, we provide the best and that we are the best.¡±
Before starting my job here, I was able to put this theory to the test. I had the opportunity to interview at several companies and view their facilities. After walking through their offices, I was able to notice a pattern. Pretty girls sat in the secretarial cubicles and then everyone else sat behind them in each department. They would be posted at the start of every new department. The reporting department had hotter secretaries than the HR department. The finance department had a hotter secretary than the reporting department. I guess the more important department you got to, the prettier secretaries you got. But memories still lingered about that chick sitting at the front when I first came in. No other girl beat that little chickity who sat at the front. She was smoking! This pattern seemed to be present at every office I interviewed. But no departments¡¯ girl would ever beat out the front desk secretary in terms of looks.
Now granted, I realize my research has only been based upon a small pool of data points. But just by one understanding the Korean culture itself, it is evidence enough to know this theory must be true. And if ¡°A¡± is true, then it would lead me to believe that ¡°B¡± is true: the hotter the front desk lady is at any given company would mean the better the company it is to work for. I didn’t make my choice of companies to work for using this criteria, but in hindsight I think I should have. Gosh, I need to see the secretary at Samsung Electronics before I die.
oh front desk secretary, i think i love you.