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#Reception

The LMC Receptionists: The Sugar And Tea Policy Works on Our Colleagues

Article November 16, 2018  |  Text by Petra Baumruková Text by Petra Baumruková

LMC operates the most famous job portals - Jobs.cz a Prace.cz. Once in a while people come and ask the receptionists to find them a job. But most of the time the receptionists take care of their colleagues. What makes them angry? And why is it a bigger deal when the tearista goes on vacation than when management leaves?

LMC is situated on the 11th floor of the high-rise Lighthouse in Prague- Holešovice. When you arrive, you are pleasantly surprised not only by the wonderful view but also by the two smiling receptionists Martina Kačerová (M) and Kateřina Korpasová (K).  And it is not just their sweet smile that makes their colleagues’ day.

“They often come to see if we have some goodies for them to save them from hunger. On the other hand, they bring us sweets from their vacation, fruits from their garden and one colleague makes wonderful coffee cakes,” said Martina. Even on its website, LMC promotes about 800 cakes a year. Even I naturally left with a chocolate candy after the interview.

Kateřina Korpasová (left) a Martina Kačerová (right). Photo by Jindřich Kodíček/UPM8

Knowing LMC’s line of business, I cannot help but ask how you found this job. Did you find it on Jobs.cz?

K: I learned about LMC when I was studying at a university where my current colleague from commerce gave a presentation about the firm. When I was looking for a job on Jobs.cz, I saw an ad for a receptionist at LMC and thought that I should definitely try it.

M: In my case, it was rather a big coincidence and luck. I returned to the Czech Republic after seven years in Ireland, put together my CV and sent it to the firm. And I have been here for five years now. Back then I was surprised by the pleasant atmosphere, and even the job interview was pleasant and relaxed in spite of the fact that I mixed Czech words with English ones and kept apologizing for having a cold.

Photo by Jindřich Kodíček/UPM8

LMC keeps growing rapidly – 150 new colleagues since 2017. Every person applying for a job in the firm must report at the reception. Can you tell right away whether or not he or she is a good candidate?

M: Every person makes some impression. When we see our colleague from HR later on and tell her about our impression, we usually agree.

K: We often even know what position they are applying for. A lot of IT specialists, sales representatives and personnel specialists come here and we can tell them apart at first glance.

How do you recognize IT specialists? Is it how they behave or how they are dressed?  

M: It is more how they behave than how they look. They are rather quiet and timid.

K: Even though one man, who was waiting for a job interview, went to our kitchen to make himself a cup of coffee. And he was definitely an IT specialist.

LMC provides its employees with interesting benefits. For instance, why do you have your own tearoom?

M: LMC founder Libor Malý is a Buddhist and he had the tearoom made as a relaxation zone. Since then, it is a professional tearista who makes tea here.

Photo by Jindřich Kodíček/UPM8

Are you more of a tea firm and are there more tea lovers than staunch coffee lovers? One colleague wrote on the LMC blog that because of the local tearoom she can no longer drink tea from teabags carried in supermarkets. Is it your case as well?

K: It is half and half. You can make coffee quickly in the coffee dispenser and drink it quickly by the computer. But people go to the tearoom to enjoy their tea when they have 20 minutes to spare and want to discuss something or just relax. Coffee is more about addiction to start a day.

M: We also have teabags in our kitchen, which is a quick option for some people, but there are also colleagues who request good-quality tea prepared according to the tea ritual.

K: The funny thing is that when our tearista is on vacation, it is a bigger deal than when our management leaves. Everybody then asks where the tearista is, how long he will be on vacation, why he is sick…

M: “… will you give us the keys to the tearoom? Come on, make an exception, we will just take something there!”

One of LMC’s mottos is: We believe in a world where people love their work.” What do you like about your work? And what makes you angry?

K: I like the fact that it is not routine. Sure, some things have to be done on a regular basis, e.g. invoicing, but when I come to work, I never know what my colleagues will come up with. I especially like the first day of the month when new employees come. I am always very curious who will join our “family.”

M: I like the most the work atmosphere that our colleagues create. Sometimes they bring us flowers just because…., wish us a nice day, ask us how we are doing. And also, the fact that my wonderful colleague Kačka and I get along really well, which is very important. But there are, of course, certain things that can make me angry, such as the typical situation: we have stickers on coffee makers asking people to empty the container when the sign to empty it is on. But there are always some people who ignore it and then come to tell us that coffee is pouring out from the wrong places.

K: Exactly. It makes me angry when people feel that when there is no more milk in the coffee maker someone else will replenish it or will empty the drip tray. Things are then taken care of late rather than on a regular basis.