Rude building front desk people


Brings to mind the quote by Alan Clark (or was it Jopling?) about Michael Heseltine - the sort of chap who had to buy his own furniture.


Well, service here depends on training. In that case, clarification from management as to what kind of services are expected is necessary. I do agree then that from a higher bracket building a better service, as per payment, is expected. Perhaps then communication was not ideal. Non verbal cues as to wait her turn or something else might have been missed. Again, carrying stuff is still deemed extra.

Getting a more personal touch as advised is always helpful.


She’s not asking for them to carry stuff. She’s asking if there’s a trolly so she isn’t carrying a bunch of heavy boxes when they arrive. And questions on where people can park delivering like a fridge.


That sounds a bit complicated for someone with limited Chinese. Now I think it was more a misunderstanding: like me, they thought she was asking them to move stuff for her.

Question: did she get the information she needed at the end?


In the building I live in you have to know who to talk to.

There are 3 people who speak English, and 2 of them are there relatively rarely, and none of them are there for night shift. So basically I always talk to the same person and during office hours.

Depending on time of day there are 2-3 more people at the front desk, and they don’t speak English at all. There’s one that will show the behavior you described, but most of them make an attempt at understanding you. Usually they will try to find someone who speaks English though. For packages I just show them a barcode on my phone, and that’s pretty much the only way I interact with those guards.


Could you give me an idea of how much would be appropriate for this? Also, can I give something to specific people without it being offensive? I’ve been thinking about giving one of the guards a few thousand because I pretty much depend on her for lots of things.


I agree. I’ve only seen the place in person once to help her move some stuff in with my car. I only know what she told me, I’ll talk to them when I help her move some stuff in later this week and see if I can get them to be more helpful. I don’t expect them to bend over backwards and do more than what’s reasonable but I do feel from what I heard they are not doing what someone can expect from them in that situation given that they’re marketing the place with hotel like services and amenities, their words in the brochure, and the amount tenants pay for the building management. I don’t buy the they don’t speak English and feel uncomfortable as an excuse for not even trying. My friend does try to use some Chinese and does her best to communicate, I think they should give her a little more than 不說英文 as a response.


I sent you a PM. But perhaps someone can help you answer the question. My building situation might not be like yours.


I was told (unverified) that every Management Company has to change frequently. It is a shame as you build up relationships with some staff and then…gone. My experience has always been pretty good with the Desk and traffic guys who greet Residents. Only a few foreigners in my building but we manage very well.
I brought a friends new scooter home today but the management were not keen on me parking it in a "Car " spot , so arranged a scooter place. The monthly fee…100 ntd !
They greet me by name and have always been helpful.
Some are not as enthusiastic as others, but that’s the case anywhere.


I also like my front desk people, they are too kind where it’s uncomfortable sometimes.


Agree on that. Lived in one building for like 8 years, and then another for 2 years, and both apartments switched building management firms AND management teams within the same firm.

I would bet a decent amount of NT$ that when an apartment building switches management companies, there’s some money involved whereby the apartment building “committee” (they all have one) decides to switch building management firms, because the new one can kick back some dough to the committee members.


Thailand is a fascinating case study in hierarchical stratification and the chaos that ensues when that structure is challenged.

Pompous or not, she probably expects (even subconsciously) a higher level of service than what Taiwan will generally give her. :2cents:


Could be true, she’s been to Taiwan often for work. Along with other major Asian cities. Her company does stuff all over Asia. I met her when I used to work in that industry and she asked me for help as one of the persons she knows here. So I think she has an idea on the difference of what to expect in Taiwan to Japan. I’ve met a lot of assholes and condescending pompous types in her field. But she doesn’t seem like that to me at least.


I think this is as simple as there are good building management companies and bad. It’s been about 50/50 for me, including one building that switched companies about half way through my stay there. First was awful, second was great. I doubt it’s more complicated than that.


Occasional gifts such as: pineapple cakes, random chiffon cakes from night market/Carrefour, some unused (but at least looks decent) electrical appliances, discount vouchers (that you can’t used but given by office/someone) or even small amount of hong bao could do more in making things smoother when dealing with the building security/admin/manager.

They work long hours (often 24/7) with minimum salary.

I rarely greeted the security in my building, ofttimes occasional nod, but often (once a few months/CNY/other occasions) give random gifts to them. It worked alright, if the needed help within their limit of authority, they will happily help.

FYI, I look “Chinese” but don’t speak the language, and coming from SE Asia (so, the bottom of totem pole here).

You might not like it, but even in Western society, there are tips for waiters/servers when you dine. Surely, you don’t want them to put special ingredient in your food (i.e. spit, not love, if you don’t get it).