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  • feedwordpress 11:20:32 on 2019/08/20 Permalink
    Tags: Admin Assistant Training, , Certification and Designation, , ,   

    Executive Assistants –Developing Your “Wow” Factor 


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    Some executive assistants have it. Some executive assistants don’t.

    What is it, you ask? That intangible, invaluable “wow” factor.

    Here’s the good news: It’s a learnable trait! Anyone can develop their own unique wow factor. It has nothing to do with your title or pay grade; it’s about who you are as a professional.

    The wow factor is a term we use in the World Class Assistant™ Certification and Professional Designation program to describe the powerful executive presence that the most successful administrative professionals exude. These assistants know how to command a room. They remain poised even under the most intense pressure. They know how to make intelligent decisions on-the-spot.

    In short, they possess abilities that make others say, “Wow!”

    As a result, these assistants enjoy an increased level of respect and even reverence. People look up to them and listen when they speak. People ask for their opinions and guidance. People trust them. They are World Class Assistants.

    Hopefully, you’re reading this and thinking, “Yep! That’s what I want!” If that’s the case, we have a few recommendations to help you get there.

    Build Exceptional Competence
    Your core abilities are the foundation. You have to be an expert at what you do. The wow factor isn’t all about the exterior. It’s what’s inside too. You can’t have it if you don’t first have the skills to do your job exceptionally well.

    Refine Your Professional Style
    Your physical presence is a big part of the wow factor. How you present yourself, your style and your overall look create your total package. There are many elements to consider: how you dress, your body language, your facial expressions, your gestures, and more. Learn to observe the successful people around you and mirror their example. But don’t forget to incorporate your own unique touches too!

    Monitor Your Speech
    Your voice is a critically important tool for communication. It can either enhance your wow factor or detract from it. Listen to your tone, as well as the words you are using. Do you sound authoritative, composed and enthusiastic? Or do you sound scattered, timid, and weak? Others can pick up on things that are subtly hidden in your voice. Remember that the wow factor can be both seen and heard.

    Embrace Serenity
    When things fall apart (which they frequently do in the business world), some assistants fall apart too. They lose all perspective and let their stress filter into every interaction and behavior. But assistants with the wow factor are viewed as a port in the storm. They’re steady, clear-headed and focused, even when others are not. They have peace and serenity because they know, whatever happens, they have the ability to meet any challenge head-on.

    This wow-factor idea comes from our World Class Assistant™ Certification and Professional Designation program. If you’re looking to really develop and leverage your own unique wow factor, this “high-end boot camp” might be the perfect next step in your career evolution. The only curriculum-based designation specifically for administrative professionals, this program is designed to help you develop the skills required to really WOW your executive(s).

    The post Executive Assistants –Developing Your “Wow” Factor appeared first on Office Dynamics - Executive And Administrative Assistant Training.

     
  • feedwordpress 18:31:12 on 2019/08/01 Permalink
    Tags: Admin Assistant Training, ,   

    Why Certification and a Designation are Important for Executive and Administrative Assistants 


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    Great administrators are known as those who do their best, work at the top of their game and who work like they are in a profession of choice. One of the strongest ways to send that message is when you choose to certify.

    Certification is a choice to complete a full program of study. Besides the actual skills and competencies you learn through a certification program, it also demonstrates to those around you that you can set goals and achieve objectives – you can be trusted to go the distance.

    A very important quality in business today is the “stick-to-it-ness” that is so lacking in society. People start and stop things constantly. We commiserate with those who have repeated annual resolutions to lose weight, quit smoking or stop gossiping; the truth is that very few people can actually dream, envision, research, analyze, decide, execute, complete, and succeed what they set out to do.

    So why should you choose to certify?

    1. You build confidence! Having that certificate on your wall sends a great positive message to everyone you work with. It means you are hungry for more! It teaches you that you are still teachable.
    • You gain new skills and competencies. The world is moving faster! Today’s garage startups will be the industry standard next year. You need to become – and remain – competitive.
    • You reinvent yourself. Reinventing yourself means you remain current and viable; you transcend age. This is critical because no matter your chronological age, you need to be adaptable.
    • You broaden your perspective. When you grow, you gain new insights that allow you to approach your work in a new, fresh way. You think more creatively and strategically.
    • You gain reputational prowess within your company. When you enter someone’s office, don’t you look around and see what they have posted? Framed certificates communicate that you care, that you “get it” and are serious about the business.
    • You master your time. When you decide to go the second mile for your career, you learn how to harness all that “free time” spent surfing the television and Internet, at the water cooler chatting — none of which are inherently bad, but they may be a poor choice when you could instead be focused on creating a better future.
    • You decide to value yourself more highly. Yes, it takes effort to work a certification through to completion: turning in every assignment, reading, analyzing, expansion of your mind and tools. But it’s so worth it!
    • You can compete. In this competitive job market, you need every tool and resource in your toolkit.
    • You may even pay for it yourself. Hear me out on this one. You may need to split costs with your employer, such as using a vacation to attend a conference they pay for, etc. Seeing yourself as an investment will increase your face value. You’ll carry yourself well, have professional poise and presence. You’ll walk into any boardroom or office with confidence that you are more than capable to perform with excellence.

    A Professional Designation is a Bonus

    There are many certification classes and online courses offered for assistants today, but there are few that offer a professional designation. A designation takes you to a totally different level in your career.

    We offer a very special designation with our World Class Assistant™ course. It is called a curriculum-based designation. Curriculum-based means that a person must attend the class and go through the curriculum, practice the skills learned, and pass a quiz. Because assistants have to attend this course to get the designation, it is a very elite designation. Not anyone can just get it. Once an assistant passes the quiz (which is given in class), the assistant receives the CWCA initials to place after his or her name.

    A professional designation will stand out. It will show that you truly have gone the extra mile in your profession. Plus, you will be proud to place those credentials after your name. If you receive any type of credentials, be sure to place them after your name on your signature line, LinkedIn profile, letterhead (if you use that), and anywhere else that is appropriate.

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    “Of all the programs offered by other training companies that I’ve attended, World Class Assistant™ was much more comprehensive and intense. This program is head and shoulders above the rest! It continues to help raise the bar.” – Jennie Forcum, CWCA

    Learn More Here

    The post Why Certification and a Designation are Important for Executive and Administrative Assistants appeared first on Office Dynamics - Executive And Administrative Assistant Training.

     
  • feedwordpress 15:32:51 on 2019/07/30 Permalink
    Tags: Admin Assistant Training, , , ,   

    Time Management for the Modern Assistant 


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    Year after year, one of the biggest struggles executive assistants report to me is effective time management. Let’s face it: your days are chaotic. You’re pulled in a million different directions, and many of you have multiple leaders to support. Deadlines press down on you, distractions steal valuable time, and there never seems to be quite enough hours in the day to get it all done! I know what you’re up against. There are many things throughout the day that can waste our time. They may not seem significant by themselves but can add up to hours of wasted time!

    Get Your Mind in the Right Place

    There is no process, no to-do list, no time tracking trick that will help you until you begin your day with a positive frame of mind. That’s right: attitude is everything. Starting each day with confidence, positivity, and passion for progress often equates to a successful day. If your body and mind are in sync, you may surprise yourself with what you can accomplish in a day.

    But you can’t just start the day in the right frame of mind. You should actively cultivate and protect that positivity (trust me…your day will try to steal it!). In order to maintain that outlook, make sure you make time for quiet in your day. Taking a few minutes to reevaluate and refocus on your work gives your mind and body the brief respite it needs to stay energized and in control. Find a place at your work that’s quiet (it may even be your own desk). Sit and breathe. Take stock of your day. Think about what you’ve accomplished and what still needs to get done. You can ask yourself these questions:

    1. What must get done before day’s end?
    2. What is the negative impact if I do not get this done?
    3. Am I currently focusing on the most important item in my leader’s eyes?
    4. What is coming up in the next few days that I must act on today?

    Be future-focused while being in the moment! These five-minute breaks may be the most valuable time you spend all day. The day can’t wash over you if you stay more aware of yourself!

    Being more aware of your habits will also help you structure your day. I recommend working on your most complex projects and tasks during your most productive time of day. For some, that may be early morning and others may be most productive in the afternoon. Whatever your sweet spot is, ensure that your daily tasks are structured in such a way that you reserve simple, mundane tasks for your less productive times and the more complex, pressing projects for your most productive times. Take a minute to think about what time of day you are most productive. If you would like more time management tips, get a copy of my downloadable eBook, Time Management for the Modern Assistant: Proven Tactics for Taming Your Day.

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    In this innovative eBook, Joan provides insightful and life-changing time management techniques for the modern assistant. Learn how to take control of your day and master what you’ve learned with concise tips and engaging activities.

    The post Time Management for the Modern Assistant appeared first on Office Dynamics - Executive And Administrative Assistant Training.

     
  • feedwordpress 14:00:16 on 2019/07/23 Permalink
    Tags: Admin Assistant Training, , , ,   

    Calling All Assistants—Secret to Building a Strategic Partnership 


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    For more than 15 years I have been teaching assistants how to build a strategic partnership with their executives. I especially spend a lot of time on this topic in my World Class Assistant™ designation course. A strategic partnership is quite different from just building a partnership with your executive or just working as a team. An example of how they would be different is that in a partnership the assistant and executive will have weekly or daily huddles. In a strategic partnership, the assistant and executive meet quarterly to discuss (in detail) the upcoming quarter. They look at every facet of what is expected to occur, new projects, how much time might they be involved, who is going to manage what, and more. This quarterly meeting will last 2 – 3 hours.

     

    There is a secret I want to share with you. As I reflect on my 20-year career as an assistant, I know something special takes place when you have a strategic partnership. It is more than the work you do. I call it The Anatomy of a Strategic Partnership.

     

    The Brains

    Use them! You and your executive use your skills to the optimum in order to be a successful duo. You arrive at the office with all your senses engaged (aka as a Cognitive Being!). You think through all the steps (i.e., beginning, middle, and finale) related to projects, situations, tasks, actions, and relationships. Your partner must be free to focus on work and think at a high level.

     

    Then to keep everything moving and engage with your executive in working together in tandem, the following skills must operate in high gear:

    • Communication
    • Organization (This includes keeping schedules, files, projects, people, your executive’s work and your own desk, flowing smoothly!)
    • Time and project management (Stop multi-tasking and partition your time for focused action. Know the deadlines to your project and manage them.)
    • Preparation (Do you arrive flustered, scattered, and blow in like the wind? Or do you arrive early, have supplies and meeting tools in place, ready to roll with the demands of business?)
    • Cooperation (This includes managing expectations, knowing where your boundaries are, teamwork, managing perceptions, recognizing you are on stage at all times.)
    • Self-management (You. Own. Your. Moods. Feelings. Thoughts. Actions.)

     

    The Heart

    You genuinely care about each other—your successes and happiness. You are aware when something is going on in the other person’s personal life that can affect their work. You also are excited when your work partner has a success, their child graduates, or their spouse receives a promotion. It is not a “weird” or “getting personal” thing. It’s all on the up and up.

     

    The Soul

    This is about using emotional intelligence (EI) which is not the same as getting emotional. There are four dimensions of emotional intelligence:

    1. Self-Awareness (I know me.)
    2. Self-Management (I manage me.)
    3. Social Awareness (I try to know you.)
    4. Social Skill or Relationship Management (I attempt to facilitate situations for a positive outcome.)

     

    I love it when an executive and his or her assistant both use emotional intelligence in building their strategic partnership. Do you see how much further your relationship will go and be improved if you apply E.I.?

     

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    Build A Better Partnership Bundle is the perfect combination of tools for you and your executive to strengthen your partnership.

    The post Calling All Assistants—Secret to Building a Strategic Partnership appeared first on Office Dynamics - Executive And Administrative Assistant Training.

     
  • feedwordpress 15:15:39 on 2019/05/21 Permalink
    Tags: Admin Assistant Training, , ,   

    Conference for Administrative Assistants – How to Get Your Executive’s Approval 


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    Most of the time assistants tell me they can’t attend our conference for administrative assistants or training because of budget cuts or not getting financial support. Sometimes it really is a budget issue. I understand that perfectly as a business owner and CEO. But often, it’s just lack of knowing how to sell the conference to the executive. Have the courage to go after what you want. That in itself is a learning experience. Below are strategies that really work. I used them when I was an assistant and needed to convince my executive to send me to a conference for administrative assistants.

    Points to Consider
    1. You need to continually learn and grow. In today’s competitive marketplace and at the pace this profession is changing, if you do not continually enhance your skills, build new ones, and have a strategy for your career, you will get left in the dust.

    2. Don’t feel guilty about being out of the office to attend a program or conference that will make you better equipped, faster, smarter, and sharper. 

    3. Get your executive to see the long-term payoff. Often executives think about the number of days you will be out of the office. You need to help them see that while you may be gone three or four days, you will gain skills and knowledge that will take you, and them, into the future. 

    4. Executives travel all over the country. Why shouldn’t you? Some assistants tell me they can only attend seminars that take place in their city or state. That is not 21st Century thinking. Assistants should be a business partner to their executive, so start acting like a business partner and convince your manager why you should be allowed to travel out of state.

    5. Don’t give up. If you really believe this training will help you professionally or even just rejuvenate your enthusiasm about your career, realize it may take three or four attempts to convince your manager. You may have to try different ways or formats to persuade your executive and, remember, timing is important.

    Principles of Persuasion

    1. Know exactly what you want to accomplish by attending a conference for administrative assistants. List your objectives alongside each topic in the curriculum and how that will tie into your current job or prepare you for the future.

    2. To be a good seller, consider the buyer’s viewpoint. Try to put yourself in your executive’s position. What key selling points would be important to your executive? How will your executive benefit from you attending the conference?

    3. Learn what motivates your executive. Is your executive motivated by ROI (return on investment), the skills you will develop or you learning from an acclaimed expert in the field? Does your executive believe in personal development and growth? If not, it will be a harder sell but don’t give up; be persistent.

    4. Keep in mind the format you will use to present your case. Try to gauge your receiver’s communication style preference. Does your executive prefer information short and to the point or does your executive like details? Is your executive a visual person? If so, provide graphs or charts to make your point. Or for example, use visuals from the administrative conference site and pull them into PowerPoint or mini-posters to communicate with your executive.

    5. Tie key learning points of the conference for administrative assistants to your professional development plan for the year and to the goals of your department.

    6. Show your executive how what you will learn will help you in specific areas of your job. For example: Let’s say one of the topics covered will be learning and understanding communication styles. Tell your executive you will use that information to be a better communicator by tapping into the receiver’s style; build rapport with internal and external customers; and complement your executive’s and his or her staff’s communication styles.

    7. If your executive still says no to the conference for administrative assistants, sincerely ask your executive why he or she believes this is not a good investment. You may be able to counter that perception.

    8. It always helps to let your executive know that you will share what you have learned with other assistants in your organization. But be absolutely cognizant of copyrights.

    9. Emphasize the benefits of networking at the conference with peers and learning from others in the field.

    10. Negotiate if necessary. Ask your executive to pay the registration fee and hotel and you’ll pay your airfare. Or you pay for your hotel stay and ask your executive to pay for registration and airfare. Be creative!

    11. If all else fails, maybe you need to make the financial investment in yourself. Yes, I said you make the investment. I know several high-performing assistants who have spent thousands of dollars on their development and have reaped tremendous rewards over the years.

    GOOD LUCK!

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    The post Conference for Administrative Assistants – How to Get Your Executive’s Approval appeared first on Office Dynamics - Executive And Administrative Assistant Training.

     
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