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  • feedwordpress 16:30:28 on 2018/06/19 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Interpersonal Skills, ,   

    Introduce Yourself to Yourself 

    introduce_yourself

    You’re not the person you once were. Times change. People change. You have changed, too. You owe it to yourself to make time for introspection so that you’re not a stranger to yourself. Don’t wait for quiet time to open up because it never will. There will always be a project to work on, family demands, another errand to run, another memo to write.

    Schedule time for getting to know yourself. When the time arrives, ask questions. As you search for answers, avoid knee-jerk responses, which tend to camouflage the truth. For example, if you ask yourself “Where do I want to go?” and the answer is “I  want to work for this company until I retire, and I’ll do my best to keep my job,” it may be the answer your spouse or friends expect from you. If so, you’re operating on automatic pilot! Perhaps you would really like to work for a top executive instead of a middle manager. If so, say so. Soon you may think about steps to take to groom yourself for the job. There’s a very slim chance that you’ll ever work for a top executive unless you know that is what you want to do.

    Are You Courageous?

    Don’t neglect to ask yourself about courage. Courage is that inner quality you possess that enables you to face challenges (e.g., change) and act without showing fear.

    Are You Easily Intimidated?

    This is another good question to ask yourself during a period of introspection. That’s because feeling intimidated is self-limiting.

    • It holds you back from being the best you can be or from offering good suggestions to improve work conditions.
    • It can lower your sense of self-worth.
    • It stunts professional and personal growth and doesn’t allow your star qualities to shine.

    You may not realize that this heavyweight is chained to your ankles. If you look down and find it there, get ready to break the chain.

    Such things as another person’s title or tone of voice intimidate some people. Some feel intimidated when a coworker is opinionated and speaks loudly, stands too close or is considerably taller.

    It’s likely that each of us feels intimidated on occasion, but it’s very helpful to combat the feeling because it’s plain old not good for you!

    After you tap into this reservoir of information about yourself, notify yourself that you’re in charge: “I’ve got five years of valuable experience behind me, and I can build upon that.” Find a way to do what you want to do. You may need others to help you reach your goals. Reach out to those folks. It’s impractical to wait and see if someone will come and take you by the hand. Moreover, the journey to attain your goal should fill you with excitement and bring you joy. (Did you ever hear the saying, “Getting there is half the fun”?)

    When life pitches you curves, conjure up creative ways to knock them out of the ballpark. You might get knocked down, but you don’t have to stay down. Pick yourself up and get on with it.

     

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    The post Introduce Yourself to Yourself appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 22:00:37 on 2018/05/06 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Interpersonal Skills, , , ,   

    Meeting New People as an Administrative Professional 

     

    conference reception for networking

    Meeting new people as an Administrative Professional is cool! Think about all the people you have met because of the people you support and where you work. Where else would you meet such a broad range of individuals? Many executive assistants and administrative assistants work with a variety of cultures. Even in my “good” old days as an executive assistant, I worked with people from Italy, Switzerland, Germany, and France.

    In our company, we have been so fortunate to meet administrative professionals from Russia, Japan, Italy, and Qatar.

    Then think of all the high-caliber people you have met through your executive or organization. Do you ever stop and think about how fortunate you are to have met such a repertoire of people? What about any local networks you have developed through your job?

    Do you ever stop to think how fortunate you are to meet so many diverse individuals because you work in the administrative profession? How many people would you not know if you didn’t work in the administrative profession—or for the executive you support? Are you showing an interest in others? Do you extend yourself to learn about people even though they don’t think just like you? Do you try to know the people your executive knows? Do you display a good attitude with everyone you meet? Is your network vast?

    Be Cool! Get to know others — you may learn something new — and you never know who they might know that you need to know!

     

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    Joan Burge
    Founder and CEO

     

     

    The post Meeting New People as an Administrative Professional appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 21:33:29 on 2018/05/05 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Interpersonal Skills, ,   

    Interacting with the World and Work 

    Administrative_Assistant_Designation_Certification

    During a class I was teaching, a high-level executive assistant that I admire said to her peers, “At our company, we insulate ourselves. We think we are the best executive assistants alive, but we are not. We have much to learn.” This executive assistant is a seasoned professional with 25+ years of experience in the administrative profession. Her statement came after she had attended the Office Dynamics Annual Conference for Administrative Excellence where she interacted with hundreds of executive and administrative assistants from around the globe. It took courage for her to admit that which shows that she is a mature individual.

     

    The good news about working in an organization for 15+ years is that you really know your organization. You have history, experience, industry knowledge; you know where to find information and how to utilize your resources; you are comfortable. The downside is that a person begins to believe that this is the only way the world works. And so you can have a group of executive assistants who believe they operate at the very highest level, yet they have not exposed themselves to assistants outside of their realm.

     

    Are you insulated?

     

    How many external networks do you have? How many administrative conferences have you attended in the past 5 years? What is the number of external executive assistants you have met outside your city and/or state? Are you uncomfortable around assistants who don’t think exactly like you do? Are you open to hearing new ideas? Do you believe that you have more room to grow and excel? Whatever your belief is, that is what you are living.

     

    I remember when I first moved away from Cleveland, Ohio after living there for 24 years, I believed every other city in the USA was like where I grew up. I traveled with my parents to nice places for vacations and I attended administrative conferences outside of Cleveland and considered myself fairly worldly. But when I started moving around to different states because of my husband’s great career in outdoor advertising, I learned that wasn’t so. I’ve lived in 8 states in 25 years ranging from North Carolina to Virginia, Tennessee, Michigan to Nevada and more. I learned a great deal from every place we lived, the people I met, and by opening my eyes. I am thankful that my husband, Dave, urged me to leave Cleveland, OH and go on an exciting adventure with him. I have hundreds of people to thank for enriching my life.

     

    joan_burge_signature

    Joan Burge
    Founder and CEO

     

     

    The post Interacting with the World and Work appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 18:28:14 on 2018/03/16 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , Interpersonal Skills, , ,   

    Do You Have A Problem Saying No? 

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    What are your tips on the best way an assistant can overcome their problem saying no.

    “I have a real problem saying no at work. How do assert myself when I can’t take on any more?” This is one question I frequently here from administrative and executive assistants. I’m sure you many of you have encountered this, so I’d like your advice.

    “I have a problem saying ‘no’ to anyone. In the past, climbing up to the position I presently hold, it was an asset and it helped me to get noticed and promoted, but now I find it has labeled me as the go-to person. With all the duties I am expected to perform, I just can’t help everyone, yet I find myself doing it anyway. How do I decline without sounding difficult or rude?”

    Assistants all over the world have struggled with how to say ‘no’ at work.

    My question to my readers: How have you handled or would handle a similar situation?

    We encourage you to share in the comments below.

    Are you an assistant who doesn’t have any trouble saying no? What has that experience been like for you?

    Are you an assistant who has a problem saying no at work? Does that spill over outside of work? What are some of the biggest obstacles for you in saying no when you simply can’t or shouldn’t accommodate a person’s request of you?

    Do you simply being the ‘go-to’ person and yes is your favorite word? Let’s hear it! Please share below.

    Need more help in the area of asserting yourself? We’ve got your back. Check out my entire series of blogs and webinars that can help you build your assertiveness in the workplace.

    Do you think that saying no to someone means you are a terrible assistant? Check out our article: Qualities of a Great Assistant (spoiler – Yes Man/Woman isn’t on the list of qualities).

    Related: How Well Do You Communicate? A guest post by Judi Moreo

    Why Being A People-Pleaser Is Bad For Your Health

    The post Do You Have A Problem Saying No? appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 21:30:52 on 2018/03/09 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , Interpersonal Skills, , , ,   

    Setting Healthy Boundaries Today 

     

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    Setting Healthy Boundaries

    I was teaching a class two weeks ago from the Star Achievement Series®.  Our theme for that day was the attitude component of Star Achievement. Under that umbrella, we addressed topics such as self-management vs. stress management, learning specific difficult people types and how to handle each of them, the benefits of conflict and much more.  Of course, we had plenty to talk about and one tip an attendee mentioned was, “setting healthy boundaries.”  She definitely got a big star for that one because setting healthy boundaries is important!

    So, what kind of boundaries are we talking about and with whom? After all, as administrative assistants and executive assistants, you sometimes feel like you can’t set boundaries or you might get fired or your leader will think you are not a team player. Some people think when I’m talking about setting boundaries, they have to do with sexual harassment in the workplace.

    When and where to set boundaries

    Boundaries can be set anytime, any place, on anything, and with any person. I’ll give you a perfect example that just happened to me this morning as I was traveling.  I was at the Las Vegas airport in the security line and was in line to pass my carry on through the screening process. (Keep in mind; I’ve been traveling for 20 years about 75% of the time, each year so I know what to do.) I was quickly placing my laptop in the bin, folding my raincoat up, taking off my shoes, and putting my purse on the conveyor when all of a sudden, this young woman who had been in line behind me, stepped right in front of me with 2 suitcases and placed them on the conveyor. She still needed to take off her shoes – and she didn’t know she was supposed to take off her sweat jacket.

    You are probably thinking, “So what?” So what? It was rude that she thought she could just jump in front of me especially when she was not ready herself. It was not as if she said, “May I go ahead of you?” or I looked behind me and said to her, “You can go ahead of me.” I nicely told her that she couldn’t cut in front of me. Of course, she looked at me in shock and made a few comments. (I will spare the details of our back and forth dialogue.) She finally took her items and moved behind me and told me to have a nice day.

    Addressing boundaries

    A boundary in the office for an administrative assistant can be as simple as addressing a coworker or manager who constantly steps into your workspace and takes your pens or pads and does not ask or return them.  If that bothers you, you need to say something.

    Another boundary you might need to set is your accessibility after hours to your leader as far as emails go. This is becoming a huge problem. As I travel the country and talk to hundreds of administrative office professionals ranging from administrators to executive assistants, I’m hearing them say they are spending too much of their personal time (evenings or weekends) managing and/or responding to emails from their leader.  One administrative assistant, who’ll I’ll call Sue for anonymity reasons, said that originally her manager did not expect her to check business emails and take action on non-work hours.  But she wanted to get a jump on things or was curious as to what was going on or wanted to read emails on Sunday night to be prepared for Monday morning. The problem is… she started responding to her leader’s emails and taking action steps if required. Now, she is frustrated because she spends 50% of her weekend working. I told her, “She created the monster.”  It wasn’t required of her and while she thought nothing of it at first, it snowballed and now she will have to say something to her leader.

    Rules to follow

    First, do not create situations that you will later regret.

    Second, people will act as we allow them to. If you don’t say something when something isn’t right, then the person assumes it is okay.

    Third, professionally communicate when setting boundaries yet be firm.

    Setting healthy boundaries is good for you and the other person.  It teaches them how to work with you in a way that stimulates win-win situations. You feel good for reasons that are too many to even mention in this blog. A few are that you feel confident, peaceful, in control (not walked over), respected, like a peer or business partner and viewed as a leader.

    Good luck with setting healthy boundaries!

    Related:

    setting_healthy_boundaries_monday_motivators

    The post Setting Healthy Boundaries Today appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
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