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  • feedwordpress 16:45:43 on 2018/02/23 Permalink
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    When Is The Last Time You Thanked Your Assistant? 

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    When is the last time you thanked your assistant? Expressing your gratitude could increase your productivity.

    I was in California speaking to a group of administrative assistants at a large corporation when one of the assistants told me how much a compliment from her executive means to her. She said, “When my executive tells me I’m doing a great job, I want to do even more for him.” “I want to go the extra mile; produce quality work; take things off my executive’s plate.”

    It may seem like a small thing to you, but it carries a great deal of weight to your assistant. Try to remember to let your administrative or executive assistant know when she or he has done something that is to your liking or meets your expectations. It will go a long way.

    When was the last time you thanked your assistant? We’d like to know in the comments below. 

    What’s stopping you from taking the time to thank your assistant?

    We’ve shared some insights into some of the biggest draw-back in these related articles.

    Are you too busy for the most important partner in your office?

    Executives and Assistants are Struggling Today.

    Not sure how to express your gratitude? 5 Ways to say thank you to your assistant.

    Why do we care if you thank your assistant?

    Fun suggestions on where you can find your assistants strengths to compliment.

    121 Creative Ways To Reward Employees 

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    The post When Is The Last Time You Thanked Your Assistant? appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 18:33:08 on 2018/02/22 Permalink
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    Lessons from Chance Encounters 

    I had just touched down in Tampa when I glanced at my nails. Peeling, fading polish glared back at me. With back-to-back speaking engagements in the next few days, I knew I needed a manicure.

    A quick check at my hotel revealed the normally ten to fifteen-dollar cosmetic luxury would cost thirty dollars at the pricey hotel beauty shop. Not feeling that extravagant, I walked to the closest mall in search of a nail salon. That’s when I found De-Ja-Vu. They offered basic manicures for twelve dollars. Sold!

    Waiting for a manicurist to free up, I sat next to a woman about thirty years my junior. As women of all ages do, we struck up a conversation. She was from Baltimore; here visiting her boyfriend and interviewing for a job so she could move closer to him. Sensing she had the ear of someone slightly more experienced, she picked my brain for some interviewing and communication tips and said she felt fortunate we ran into each other. Like a good book you fail to finish reading, I sometimes wonder what happened to her. Did she get the job? Did she move in with the boyfriend? How did her life turn out?

    For those of us who talk to just about anyone, we are prone to chance encounters almost everywhere. I sometimes think about people I’ve met on airplanes, in train stations, on vacation, at the supermarket or waiting in line to see a ticketed event. Most of these people, we never remember or see again. Others, even if we don’t know it at the time, may have crossed our paths for a reason.

    Earlier this year as I was taking a walk, I had one of those encounters with people who had also accidentally encountered each other. It was a cold, blustery day so there weren’t many people out and about. As I turned a corner, there was a couple trying to take a selfie. I offered to help. That’s when I learned they had met fifty years ago at that very hour on that exact street corner in Longport, New Jersey. They had come back to celebrate at the exact time and exact spot where they began their life together.

    When they met, they were teenagers who lived in different states and had come to visit family who lived on neighboring streets. Unlike today, where texts and social media make it easy to stay in touch, they exchanged phone numbers, but long distance calls were expensive back then so they wrote letters. After college, they got together.

    Some experts believe if you prepare yourself to make the most of chance encounters, good things will happen to you. They even say you can significantly increase the chances of finding a great job, meeting your soul mate and creating your own luck. If this sounds like a bunch of malarkey, there is science to prove there could be something to it.

    Psychologist Dr. Richard Wiseman wrote a book called The Luck Factor which concludes that not only is luck is a way of thinking and behaving, but it’s also something that can be learned.

    In a post at Oprah.com, writer Ben Sherwood details one of Wiseman’s early experiments where he taped a £5 note to a sidewalk outside a coffee shop. Then he planted actors at tables inside. One actor was a ‘millionaire’; the others were not. Each person was instructed to behave the same way. Next, he recruited two subjects he calls Martin and Brenda. Martin described himself as lucky; Brenda said she was not a lucky person. When Martin walked up to the store, he immediately spotted the money, picked it up, entered the coffee shop and sat down next to the millionaire. They engaged in conversation and even started exploring opportunities to do business together.

    Brenda, however, never noticed the money when she walked past it. She also sat down next to the millionaire, but they never spoke. According to Sherwood’s post, when asked to describe his day, Martin said he had a lucky day. Brenda described her day as uneventful.

    Both people had the same opportunity, but acted differently. Wiseman says lucky people create, notice, and act upon chance opportunities in their lives. He believes that being in the right place at the right time is more than fate; it’s about being in the right state of mind.

    Clearly, every chance encounter isn’t life changing. While you might recognize when someone has made a difference for you, you don’t always know when you’ve made a difference for them unless they tell you. I recall sitting next to a young man on a coast-to-coast flight. He was struggling with personal issues which we talked about for much of the flight. He had saved my business card and nearly a year later, e-mailed me to thank me, saying my advice prompted him to move in a different direction and he was happier than he had ever been.

    Psychologist and theorist Albert Bandura studied how seemingly random encounters change lives. He writes that former President Ronald Reagan and his wife Nancy met when she began to receive mail meant for someone else. She complained to the Screen Actors Guild, of which Reagan was president at the time. They met and were engaged shortly after.

    In a commencement speech at Stanford University, late Apple founder Steve Jobs says if he had not dropped in on a calligraphy course, the Mac may have never evolved the way it has today.

    Thinking back to nearly three decades ago, a chance encounter changed my life. My friend and I entered the same café where we noticed a man enjoying a bite to eat. I made eye contact. She didn’t. At a party later that evening, I spoke to him. She didn’t. She had a negative attitude, commenting he was too old for me (we’re two years apart), was probably married (he was single) and rattled off a host of other assumptions. I was more positive, perhaps more open to luck and chance encounters. That man is now my husband of almost thirty years.

    Bandura says chance encounters are important because they have branching power. That means, they could not have been planned, yet they frequently inspire a chain of events that can shift someone’s life course and open unexpected opportunities.To take advantage of chance encounters, Bandura recommends looking outward to grab the branches within reach. To me, this means the following:

    BE PRESENT
    Instead of burying your nose in your cell phone when sitting alone, look up and out so you make eye contact with others. If I had not made eye contact with my husband, my life would be very different.

    CHANGE ROUTINES
    Like a good workout routine, you need to change things up, so you work different muscle groups. The same can be said for daily life. If you walk to work, take a different route. Perhaps you’ll stop into a different coffee shop, talk to someone new, see a sign announcing an interesting program you might attend. You never know who you’ll meet along the way.

    IMAGINE POSITIVE OUTCOMES
    In the Journal of Positive Psychology, researchers demonstrated that people who imagined a “best possible self” for one minute and wrote down their thoughts, generated a significant increase in positive effect. Simply put, if we are optimistic, we are likely to turn chance encounters into positive experiences.

    Last week, I was seated next to a ninety-year-old woman on a plane. I had work to do and a movie I wanted to watch. Making idle conversation with a stranger was not part of my plan. Only to be polite, as I sat down, I said hello, how are you She burst into tears and said, “I’m scared”.

    Her husband had died. Her children and grandchildren live all over the country. She had never traveled by herself before. She was sad and felt very alone. We talked. I helped her to the bathroom and off the plane, then stayed with her until she was safely seated in a wheelchair with an airline attendant to help her retrieve her bags. She asked for my card.

    When I sat down to write this column today, it was not supposed to be about chance encounters. Then I received her email which read: “Just a note to thank you again for being so friendly and helpful to me on our flight!”

    To me, it was nothing more than being kind. To her, it meant much more. We never know how a chance encounter will influence or change lives. We do know that these seemingly simple moments happen to all of us and if we’re paying attention, they can have a positive life-long lasting effect.

     
  • feedwordpress 06:10:30 on 2018/02/22 Permalink
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    Quick Tip #75: Staying Relevant During Changing Times 

    Staying relevant during changing times is easier said than done. But if we don’t work at it, we may be perceived as out of touch and not as valuable to clients, colleagues and other important audiences. This video provides simple tips to stay competitive in business today.

     

     
  • feedwordpress 17:07:03 on 2018/02/20 Permalink
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    Your Administrative Assistant Is Your Greatest Asset 

    Your_Greatest_Asset_Is_Your_assistant

    Your assistant is your greatest asset, or will be after you read this.

    In today’s fast-paced corporate world, many managers rely on the newest technology to help their company grow. Between e-mail, virtual assistants, smartphones, high-speed Internet connections and a host of other technological marvels, they mistakenly believe they are more independent than ever—making their own travel plans, managing their own Inbox, sending their own letters and scheduling their own meetings. In reality, however, these so-called independent managers have lost sight of the one asset that can truly impact the company’s bottom line: an empowered administrative assistant.

    Unfortunately many assistants (also known as administrative professionals) are not taken seriously. In order to make the most of your administrative professional and advance your company’s mission, you need to treat your assistant like a partner and develop their skills on a daily basis. Only then will they have the know-how and confidence to make decisions and take charge of challenges that arise during the day.

    Related: Assistants Speak Out, Their Biggest Struggles In Partnering With Their Executive

    Following are the top 4 ways to foster growth in your partnership with your assistant.

    1. Have regular meetings. Conducting daily or weekly meetings allows your assistant to gain a broader perspective of your company’s goals and what is currently going on in the organization. Attending these meetings also keeps your assistant abreast of upcoming projects and the status of existing ones. Armed with this knowledge he or she can intelligently answer questions for clients, follow-up on action items, monitor the progress of upcoming projects and also remind you of important tasks.
    2. Provide continual and constructive feedback. Many managers and executives neglect to give their assistant any kind of feedback—positive or negative. While they may be able to critique a specific project the person worked on, they’re hesitant to give an individual the praise or correction needed. If you want your assistant to grow professionally, you need to let her or him know how their performance rates with you.
    3. Be a mentor. While you may have an abundance of company information, such as brochures, web site content and catalogs, your assistant ultimately looks to you to teach her or him about the organization and business in general. You can help by mentoring on a regular basis. For example, when you make a decision, explain to your assistant why and how you came to your decision.
    4. Establish goals and state your expectations. Your administrative professional truly wants to help you look good. It’s difficult for this person to meet your expectations when you don’t clearly communicate them. To make your administrative assistant a greater asset to your business, clearly state what needs to be accomplished and why.

    No matter how advanced your office becomes, your administrative assistant will always prove to be your greatest asset. When you encourage your assistant to become a true work partner, you will become more productive.

    Joan Burge

    Underneath_It_All_assistantThis article is an excerpt from the book, Underneath It All: Postgraduate Level Revelations Lift Administrative Assistants to New Heights. Authored by Joan Burge, Founder & CEO, Office Dynamics International

    Related: Executives and Assistants Are Struggling Today

     

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    The post Your Administrative Assistant Is Your Greatest Asset appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 09:04:56 on 2018/02/20 Permalink
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    How to Be The Best Role Model 

    Chances are, at some point you’ve worked with a leader whose example is still with you today. Maybe it was a leader who showed confidence when everyone else was frazzled, who stayed calm under intense pressure. Or a boss who deftly handled whiners and complainers, or a mentor whose patient guidance set you on the path you’re still following.

    Whatever their role, these are the people who know that who they are is as important as what they do. For them, setting a positive example is an integral element of leadership, a part of their life and work every day.

    So what kind of example are you setting? Whether you’re aware of it or not, your actions and attitudes are being watched. You’re setting an example, modeling acceptable behavior to others.

    How can you tell if you’re setting an example people can look up to? Here are some traits the best role models share:

    They lead with self-awareness. The best role models reflect honestly and productively on their own behavior and the impact they have on others. They consider the needs and feelings of others, they’re responsible for their actions and accountable for their mistakes, and, most important, they pay attention to how their words and actions affect others.

    They lead with positivity. Great role models know that no one can be cheerful all the time, but they look for opportunities in difficult situations and face challenges with resilience and energy. They inspire those around them with their positivity and optimism.

    They lead with empathy. Part of being a role model is tuning in to the feelings of those around you. It means meeting people where they are and relating to them with kindness, compassion, and understanding. At the heart, it’s as simple as acknowledging our shared humanity.

    They lead with humility. The best role models are humble enough to be honest when they’re not sure about something. They’re supportive when you need help, sincere when others are manipulative, and modest when others are showing off. Those who lead with humility are at their best when they’re encouraging others to succeed.

    They lead with integrity. Great role models enter every situation with their good character, morals, and principles firmly in place. They don’t preach; they don’t have to. They know their values and use them as the basis of their choices, and they have the decency to do the right thing even when it’s difficult.

    They lead with trust. Leaders with consistent character—the ones who “walk their talk”—develop an atmosphere of accountability and responsibility. And those elements form the foundations of trust. A commitment to building and earning trust is one of the most important elements of a great team.

    They lead with respect. Many people aspire to impressive titles in an effort to get others to respect them. But the best roles model understand that you earn respect through the way you treat others. They give respect, and in turn they receive it.

    They lead with honesty. People will naturally look up to you if they can count on you to tell the truth, however difficult or awkward it may be. This includes telling the truth about yourself, the mistakes you’ve made, and the places where your judgment has faltered. Your people will appreciate and emulate your transparency

    Whether you want to be or not, unless you live alone in a cave you’re probably somebody’s role model. That makes it important for each of us to remember that people learn more from what we do than what we say, more from what we are than what we teach.

    Lead from within. Whether you choose to be or not, you are a role model—so watch your words and be mindful of your actions, because people are looking at each other to be inspired.


    N A T I O N A L    B E S T S E L L E R

    THE LEADERSHIP GAP

    What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now

     


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:

     

    Photo Credit: Getty Images

    The post How to Be The Best Role Model appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
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