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  • feedwordpress 16:15:22 on 2018/10/16 Permalink
    Tags: , , Conflict Resolution,   

    Should You Let Your Boss Shift the Blame to You? 

    Question: “My boss recently shifted blame in my direction for some mistakes in a print campaign, when the problem was actually some simple miscommunication between us. She didn’t blame me directly or maliciously; she just conveniently left out some facts when describing the problem to her superiors, and that made her look a little better at my expense. What should my reaction be? How much ‘bad press’ should I be willing to absorb for the sake of helping her out, since helping her out is my job?” 

    – Daphne, Public Relations Assistant

     

    See comments below, and send your own question to editor@adminprotoday.com.

     

    This post was shared by our friends at Business Management Daily.

     

    The post Should You Let Your Boss Shift the Blame to You? appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 16:15:38 on 2018/10/09 Permalink
    Tags: Conflict Resolution, , , , ,   

    Tips for the Tourist in All of Us: The Savvy Admin’s Guide to Travel! 

    Tips_for_the_Tourist_in_All_of_Us_The_Savvy_Admin’s_Guide_to_Travel!

     

    I have been hosting the Annual Conference for Administrative Excellence for 25 years. I also host a high-end training program for executive assistants and administrative assistants called World Class Assistant, in Las Vegas. I have observed hundreds of assistants travel and heard numerous stories about their travel experiences both while in transit to Las Vegas and during their stay in Las Vegas.

    Since I travel most of the year and every trip is an adventure, many of the things I hear attendees complain about are typical, yet they appear to be larger than life to the attendee. What is most interesting is that administrative professionals are the ones who are very involved in their executive’s travels yet are not road warriors. It is for this very reason that I had Nancy Fraze, an Office Dynamics journalist, write, a list of Travel Tips. While these were written for our administrative professional conference attendees, they can apply to any trip you may whether it be a business trip or vacation. It will certainly reduce any travel stress you may experience.

    First and foremost: No trip is perfect! You must expect the unexpected and go with the flow. Adapt quickly and bring lots of reading materials for downtime at the airport.

    Town Cars vs. Taxi:
    Your choice should depend on the city you are traveling to, the distance you will be going from the airport to the hotel, and any other local traveling you will be doing—such as going from a hotel to a restaurant; plus the time of your arrival (are you arriving after dark and traveling alone?). I travel to many cities where a town car is not much more than a taxi and it is safer travel. Plus the town car is usually very professional, assists with your bags and pampers you by providing water, newspapers, and mints and shares good information about what to do in town, where to eat, where not to go. As a woman traveler, my safety is the #1 value I hold highest and I am willing to pay more for feeling safe.

    Hotel Shuttles:
    You need to find out if that hotel shuttle has specific times airport pick-up times. Does that schedule fit with your arrival? Or if it is a half hour out from your arrival time, is it worth it for you to sit around the airport and wait? It depends on what you need to do upon your arrival. Do you have lots of free time? Or do you need to get to your hotel, quickly unpack, and get to a meeting? It also depends on whether your flight arrived on time or not.

    Share Ground Transportation:
    Sharing a taxi or town car with other attendees from your organization may be a cost-effective alternative. Be organized and schedule your flights where you arrive within 15 or 20 minutes of each other or travel on the same flight. If you are traveling alone, find out who else is attending that administrative conference or a training event, coordinate arrival times and share your transportation. It takes being proactive and organized.

    Download Our Free Comprehensive Business Travel Planning Checklist Here.

    Hotel Requests or Repairs: Most hotels do their best to provide good customer service, neat and fully functional sleeping rooms, efficient staff, and tasty food. However, with that said, the hotel staff are people and people are not perfect. Equipment does burn out or needs maintenance. This is just a simple truth. Fire alarms inadvertently go off while you are in the shower! Air conditioners stop working. Walls are thin and you can hear the person in the other room talking. Guests will be outside your bedroom door at 11:00 p.m. laughing and showing no consideration that you have to get up at 6:00 a.m. for a full day at a conference or training.

    While it is upsetting when these things happen, and you may have been traveling all day only to arrive late, your room is too cold or too hot, you have not eaten all day, and your luggage did not arrive . . .

    • Remain calm.
    • Call the front desk from your hotel room phone and state your issue.
    • If you do not get a satisfactory response within 10 minutes (the repair person or a call that they are being dispatched), call the front desk again. Request to speak to the “Manager on Duty.”
    • For repairs such as burned out light bulbs, be aware that hotels often change them during the day while the cleaning staff is servicing your room. Simply report it and go on about your schedule.
    • Do not sit in your room waiting! The engineers often come into the room while I am at dinner or off to my training session.
    • Request a credit or $20.00 off your dinner if they have really messed up! Be assertive in a professional fashion.

    Ambiance: Hotels, restaurants, and spas spend thousands of dollars planning an ambiance that will please you. Most hotel rooms create an ambiance with lighting that is not as bright as you are used to at home. You may find the task light at the bedside table or desk area is necessary in order to enjoy reading in bed or to check emails at the desk. Hotels are designed for the vacation traveler even though the majority of their business is the business road warrior.

    Be flexible and remember to savor the unfamiliar and find the joy and beauty in it. You can also sink into a deliciously deep tub for a long soak; enjoy the marble shower or the marvelous scenery, not to mention the lighted makeup mirror! Or if these are not provided (find out ahead of time), then bring your own makeup mirror or little reading light.

    Expect the unexpected:
    When traveling, you must expect the unexpected. Perhaps your flight is delayed or overbooked. Perhaps you miss the shuttle, your baggage is delayed or lost; the hotel room is not quite ready when you arrive. This happens to every traveler at some point. When it happens to you, how will you respond?

    • Remain calm! (Again, we’ve all witnessed the cranky traveler – you don’t want to be that person.)
    • Prepare: pack a good book or your MP3 player so you can entertain yourself during downtime.
    • Consider it a learning experience that will help you know how best to help your executives when someday it happens to them!
    • Use your administrative skills and a winning attitude to find the joy in that unexpected moment, no matter what.
    • Remember: people are human and mistakes sometimes happen.
    • Keep a positive outlook throughout the unexpected experience. It feels much better than going through it any other way!

    Happy travels!

    joan_burge_signature
    Travel tips provided by Nancy Fraze.

    Download Our Free Comprehensive Business Travel Planning Checklist Here.

    The post Tips for the Tourist in All of Us: The Savvy Admin’s Guide to Travel! appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 22:14:32 on 2018/10/05 Permalink
    Tags: , , Conflict Resolution, , , ,   

    How to Change Someone’s Bad Attitude 

    As you know, I am big on attitude! I believe in what Charles Swindoll once wrote, “I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me, and 90% how I react to it.” Being positive or negative about any situation will have its inevitable conclusion because you’ve already framed the end result.

    If you’re like most people reading this weekly column, you choose to surround yourself with positive thinkers. Your continuing success reflects that. Still, we can’t always avoid working with (or sometimes, living with) negative thinkers. Therein lies a problem: What can we do to change a person’s inherently bad attitude, in part so it doesn’t affect us? And should we try?

    Here are a few observations that can help:

    • People are who they are. Like spouses or children, they don’t “change” because you will it. So exerting your influence and expecting the response you want is foolhardy at best and potentially disastrous for your relationship at worst.
    • Try to empathize, even a little. Remember: Life is not fair, and it can be harder on some than others. People who feel defeated or alone in the world still have to wake up each morning and eke out a living like the rest of us. We don’t have to know the exact reasons behind their troubles to see the cloud that surrounds them at work, and to pause a moment and wish that weren’t so- for their sakes more than ours.
    • Reach out as you’re able. Make an effort to connect and be friendly- more than once, if need be. People with poor attitudes tend to be protective and distrusting- and may not initially welcome your friendship, perhaps because they fear there are “strings” attached. Be gentle in your persistence: It’ll reinforce your sincerity, likely earning their trust and a better attitude in the process.

    One final note: When a person’s bad attitude cannot be tempered by the above methods, yet still needs to be addressed for the benefit of the workplace, you may want to consider constructively confronting the situation or suggesting that a manager do so. Many times, informing people of their bad attitude in a positive way (i.e., “I thought you’d want to know the impact X, Y or Z is having on the staff, because I’m confident that’s not how you meant to be perceived…”) can help influence change, simply by making them aware.

    Have a great week- and remember your attitude impacts others, too! So share your positivity, and help everyone you encounter make the most of every day!

    joan_burge_signature

    The post How to Change Someone’s Bad Attitude appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 16:15:04 on 2018/08/07 Permalink
    Tags: , Conflict Resolution, , ,   

    Adapting to Change 

    There can never be too many discussions about change. It’s constant, it’s inevitable, unexpected at times, but it can be extremely rejuvenating. No matter how many times change occurs in life, expected or not, it can seem as if you are not in control. Unexpected change disrupts a routine, but if we reevaluate the current routine and what opportunities the unexpected change offers then we take control. With a positive outlook, adapting to change provides control and allows the opportunity for personal and professional growth.

    A few of the types of change:

    • Career
    • Position or duty changes
    • Health
    • Family or home life
    • Monetary
    • Relocation

    Types of change are as vast as the types of personalities we encounter throughout life. And every single type of change can affect each of us uniquely. There are not any magic words to stop change from happening, but there are ways to adapt and be in control.

    Suggestions for adapting to change:

    • Reach out for support. Talk about the situation and listen to supportive feedback.
    • Evaluate the situation and focus on facts. What opportunities can you explore?
    • Remind yourself of accomplishments, skills you have developed and your unique traits; focus on what you do have control of.
    • Explore all options you have – even ones you may think are unlikely…change can be an opportunity to take chances; a chance to leap and focus on a dream. A friend’s daughter lost her job a few years ago and took that as a sign to go for her dream job; she now happily operates a food truck business!
    • Don’t react quickly, take time to breathe and focus. Get a game plan in place.
    • If your job has changed ask yourself if the change will be a positive or if you need to take control and make your own changes. Maybe it’s time to find a better career match.
    • Grow & learn; read, talk to mentors, attend training or a conference, watch webinars, etc. I suggest constant learning before the unexpected change occurs so you can adapt more easily

    Adapting to professional change shows professionalism and confidence. I can recall my first major professional lesson in adapting to change as if it were yesterday.

    Several years ago, I advanced into one of my very favorite career positions. I worked with an amazing team, flexible hours, great manager, excellent benefits and pay, challenges that provided skills I use to this day, an office with a great view, control of developing procedures and next to one of the best coffee shops! After three years, a new director came in, eliminated a few positions and changed my role. It happened quickly; my office was moved, hours extended, job duties increased, my favorite aspects of my job were taken away and I no longer reported to my great manager.

    I went home that evening and cried…I was devastated. I got caught up in the feeling of thinking I was not in control of the situation. After a pep talk from my husband, a great coworker and from my sister I set up a meeting with the director. I may not have control of his thoughts, but I had control over how I reacted and my confidence. Nothing he could do or say took away all of the hard work I had taken pride in and procedures I had developed (that was part of my personal pep talk).

    I typed up a list of accomplishments (quite proudly so and smiling ear to ear) and confidently carried them with me as I walked into the conference room for our meeting. He would just have to change his mind when he got to know me better and saw my wonderful list. Right?

    He was late…I was not distracted through, I stayed focused. I was armed with facts and not letting his busy schedule & late arrival shake my confidence. As the minutes turned into five-minute increments my palms started to sweat and my mouth got dry. I shook my head… ‘you got this’ I told myself as I looked at that amazing list of accomplishments!

    He did show up…25 minutes late, but I was still prepared and ready. He shook my hand, smiled and apologized for being late…we were off to a good start. I explained how I deserved some of my duties back and proposed suggestions that would allow me to keep those duties & my schedule. I spoke clearly, stayed focused on facts, my palms stopped sweating, I was doing great (patting self on back).

    Then, not even halfway through my speech, he stood up and pointed out the window and yelled THAT BIRD. Yes, bird. My heart raced, my palms started to sweat again, my mouth was so dry. I wasn’t sure how to react. He wasn’t listening, he already made up his mind and it didn’t matter what I said. Finally, as he stood behind me pointing out the window, he explained there had been a bird swooping up and down and down and up (yes, he imitated this action). He kept explaining the swooping action and then excused himself to another meeting, after confirming his decisions were final.

    I sat there alone looking out at the bird. Ah, that free bird, swooping from branch to branch, now he was in complete control. I smiled. I didn’t cry, I didn’t get upset. I focused on the things that I did have control over. I was still the same unique person, I was still a professional. My ‘ex’ manager told me he would write me an excellent letter of recommendation if I decided to move on. My coworkers offered support. The next weekend I started looking for another job, a month later I was working closer to home, the new position offered free tuition, great benefits, flexible hours, and duties I loved.

    A few months later I attended an event at the old job and walked up to the director (the birdman) and thanked him. He smiled and asked why…I explained that his decision created a door of opportunity for me and I was grateful.

    One full-time job and a few temp positions came after that one. That entire career journey led me to my current position and I’m grateful for the amazing opportunities the past several years have offered. Each decision in life, even the ones we don’t feel we have complete control over, lead us to the next step of our lives.

    Adapting to change is an opportunity for growth.

    If you stay true to yourself and confident in your uniqueness, then change is easier to appreciate. Don’t let change take charge and control. You’re in control of you and how you react. It’s OK to be disappointed, cry, be upset, but all of those emotions are temporary and should be treated as such. A change will come; expect it…welcome it…control it.

    If you are going through a change right now, especially professional change, that you don’t quite feel in control of, reach out to mentors, friends, and others. Evaluate your options and remember you are not alone, you are unique, but not alone!

    Change is opportunity…share how you deal with change in the comments below!

     

    dana_buchanan

    Dana Buchanan is a 20 plus year professional assistant with a passion for writing and offers a unique and professional perspective to projects and brainstorming sessions! She enjoys helping others discover key steps toward their career focus, job search, or self-employment exploration by creating or editing resumes, researching a particular type of job search, discovering business ideas and the action needed to succeed and loves sharing interviewing tips! Dana is also available to speak to small groups.

    You can read and follow Dana’s blogs at Success Encourager

     

     

     

    August 14, 2018

    10:00 AM PT – 11:00 AM PT

    Register Here

    The post Adapting to Change appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 20:42:18 on 2018/06/08 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Conflict Resolution, , ,   

    When is it too soon—or too late—to thwart bullying? 

    admin_advice

    Each month we feature a question from our friends at Business Management Daily’s Admin Pro Forum. Please enjoy engaging in a conversation about this month’s question.

    Question: “I’ve told myself that if my boss takes a very bullying tone to me again, I’ll speak up about it. But in the heat of the moment, I tend to weaken and not defend myself from it. If I confront him directly, should I come back to his office sometime after it’s over and we’ve both settled down, or deal with the issue right away and risk an escalating argument? Should I report his actions to someone immediately after it happens, or should I wait till I cool down so I get a better perspective and have notes? It’s not so much a question of if I try to put an end to what I think is bullying; it’s when.” – Anonymous Admin

    Feel free to leave your response below!

     

    training_program_for_administrative_assistants

    “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!” – Jennie

    The post When is it too soon—or too late—to thwart bullying? appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
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