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  • feedwordpress 16:15:44 on 2019/04/18 Permalink
    Tags: meetings, , ,   

    Calendar Management for Executive Assistants 


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    calendar_management_for_assistance

    Meetings, meeting, and more meetings! In spite of all the technology, meetings have not gone away. Whether your executive is holding a virtual meeting or attending a virtual or live meeting, there are certain steps you can take to ensure you are properly scheduling meetings and making your executive’s life easier.

    As an assistant of 20 years, I had one perspective of meeting management. But now that I am the executive involved in numerous meetings, I can tell you what really is important. You must keep these things in mind when you are managing your executive’s calendar. Calendar management is an important skill. It is more than dropping in appointments on blank dates and times.

    • COGNITIVE task! Meeting planning is a cognitive task. This is something a computer will not do. Just because a date is open, it does not mean it is available. You must think about your manager’s workload, other commitments, travel, upcoming meetings, past meetings, previous week’s schedule. You must think about the time commitment related to each meeting. Some meetings don’t take long to prepare for while other meetings take a great deal of preparation. You must also think consider whether travel was involved—whether local travel or getting on an airplane. You would consider jet lag; personal appointments; time to prepare; time to wrap up a meeting; logistics; travel time. This is not a job for a robot! This takes brains, strategy, and empathy.
    • When scheduling travel or appointments, VIEW the calendar in terms of:
    • What was my leader’s schedule like last week? Did he/she travel?
    • This week’s schedule
      • How many meetings?
      • Who are the meetings with?
      • Virtual or in person?
      • Time consumed in last-minute preparation for the meeting?
      • Travel?
    • Next two weeks’ schedule
      • Travel? If so, how many days? Arriving home late? Jet lag?
      • In office—how much free time is available? What about time for my leader to work on:
        • projects
        • return phone calls
        • respond to e-mails
        • delegate
        • work on presentation?
      • Level of meetings: high-level meeting with high-level prep; low-level meetings with minor preparation time?
    • ASSESS if the meeting is necessary/essential before booking meeting. Does your executive really need to attend this meeting? Can anyone else on his/her team attend in their place? Don’t be afraid to ask questions of the meeting planner; get details before committing your executive to a meeting. 
    • KNOW your leader’s preferences and occasionally confirm preferences. While there are certain parameters for better meeting scheduling such as:
    • Don’t schedule meetings the first thing Monday mornings
      • Don’t schedule meetings after 2:00 p.m. on Friday
      • Stay away from meeting that will run into lunch hours
      • Leave time at the end of the day for your manager or executive to wrap up unfinished business; prepare for the next day; return phone calls or respond to e-mails . . .

    Every manager and executive has their personal preferences. Some executives will run like crazy going from meeting to meeting, starting early in the day and going late into the evening. Other executives want their executive or administrative assistant to set parameters. I know one executive who has a 90 minute drive into the office and does not want any meetings scheduled before 10:00 a.m. Learn your executive’s preferences and make it work!

    Even if your executive is willing to run from meeting to meeting, he or she will appreciate you leaving them space to work on a presentation or project, allow for quiet time or preparation time, and being able to go through their e-mails.

    managing_your_executives_day

    Do you find yourself still running in circles around your executives day? Are they ricocheting from meeting to meeting? Are you having a hard time keeping up? Access our online learning video series, Managing Your Executive’s Day and start “wowing” your executive today!

    The post Calendar Management for Executive Assistants appeared first on Office Dynamics - Executive And Administrative Assistant Training.

     
  • feedwordpress 19:00:24 on 2019/02/27 Permalink
    Tags: , , , meetings, ,   

    How do I Deal with an Executive that Always Says Yes? – Ask an Admin 


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    training_for_administrative_assistants

    Welcome to Ask an Admin! This is where any administrative assistant or executive assistant can submit any question they have and your peers can weigh in on the conversation with their advice. There is more than one way to approach a situation or problem so we would love to hear your input!

    This week Karen asks:

    How do Administrative Professionals deal with an executive who says yes to everything?

    Background info: Our new CEO says yes via meeting requests via email, text, LinkedIn, Facebook and many other social media channels and then in an email or other post tags me asking me to set up a meeting. I’m struggling since the new CEO started in November, I have a Google doc with all of the requests have come through, ranked them via importance. He isn’t making it a priority to prioritize his schedule and also he doesn’t look at his schedule, I can email, print out or text meetings and he only wants to know what meeting is next. He can also get upset if he’s not prepped properly, but if he’s not making our meetings a priority how can I prepare him properly for success in his role?

    So it sounds like Karen may have a “button masher” (someone that just clicks approve or yes without looking) and isn’t taking the time to prep himself. Wow! This is a tough one…

    Well what does Karen need to do? What can she do?

    ATTENTION: If you’ve submitted your response on our Ask an Admin blog post, please be patient to see your response and other responses. We have to manually approve them to prevent spammers and profanity. If you do not see your response right away, please give it time and revisit. We apologize for this but this is the best way we can keep YOUR blog clean! Thank you, everyone!


    About Ask an Admin:

    Ask an Admin will be a weekly post on our blog that presents a question that you or a fellow administrative professional submitted to us. We will choose one question per week and post it on our blog.

    If you have a question that you would like to submit, please send it to officedynamics.aaa@gmail.com and include the name you would like us to use.

    If you want to subscribe to our blog so you don’t miss any posts, please visit https://officedynamics.com/blog/ and subscribe in the right-hand column.

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    Monday Motivators™ is a weekly email sent from Joan Burge that gives you a little kick start to the week. These emails will include work advice, life advice, and sometimes how to find that good balance. To subscribe to Monday Motivators™ please click the button below.


    Help other administrative professionals and share this page using the buttons below!

    The post How do I Deal with an Executive that Always Says Yes? – Ask an Admin appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 16:00:38 on 2019/01/14 Permalink
    Tags: , meetings, ,   

    How to Stay Organized with Leadership Team Meetings? – Ask An Admin 


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    Welcome to another question for Ask an Admin – Admin to Admin Advice. This is where you submit the question and your peers answer your question. We believe that there are many different ways to approach problems, difficult tasks, and situations so we thought this would be a great way to provide you a place to share your input as well as receive input from others.

     

    This week’s question is:

    In my many years of working, I have never been so involved with the Leadership Team.  This is a good thing and a big learning curve for me.

    In starting 2019 off on hopefully on the right foot, I am looking for advice on how to stay organized with all the meetings.  Making sure agendas are going out timely, meeting with leaders to create the agenda, taking notes, bringing attention to meetings,  etc.

    I would like to know of any system that works on how to stay organized with possible at a glance template to show the leadership team what all is going on.

     

    This is a wonderful question! It can be very difficult to stay organized with so many moving parts. So what is the best system you know of or what is it that you do to tackle this tough situation?

     

    It’s your turn to give your advice, tips, tricks, and anything else you have to offer up. Place your comments or advice in the comment section below.

     

    ATTENTION: If you’ve submitted your response on our Ask an Admin blog post, please be patient to see your response and other responses. We have to manually approve them to prevent spammers and profanity. If you do not see your response right away, please give it time and revisit. We apologize for this but this is the best way we can keep YOUR blog clean! Thank you, everyone!

     


     

    About Ask an Admin:

    Ask an Admin will be a weekly post on our blog that presents a question that you or a fellow administrative professional submitted to us. We will choose one question per week and post it on our blog.

    If you have a question that you would like to submit, please send it to officedynamics.aaa@gmail.com and include the name you would like us to use.

    If you want to subscribe to our blog so you don’t miss any posts, please visit https://officedynamics.com/blog/ and subscribe in the right-hand column.

     

    Meeting Planning and Execution Live E-Learning Course

    March 14, 2019

    1:00 – 2:00 p.m. ET | 10:00 – a.m. PT

     

    Help other administrative professionals and share this page using the buttons below!

    The post How to Stay Organized with Leadership Team Meetings? – Ask An Admin appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 16:00:27 on 2018/09/27 Permalink
    Tags: meetings, , ,   

    Make Your Meetings More Engaging 


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    Whether you have been coordinating meetings for decades or days there are some simple tips to follow to make any meeting more productive and the attendees feel welcomed. There are times when meetings seem to plan themselves especially when the majority of the week is spent attending or planning several meetings! People may quickly migrate to an open room and start discussing random topics, etc. or an agenda is created, the room is reserved, but the topics are not clear. The planning doesn’t stop once an invite is sent out, does it?

    So how can you make your meetings more engaging?

    • Create a clear agenda
      • Note who needs to attend and why (their role, involvement, etc.)
      • Define a timeframe
      • Clarify the main topic and any subtopic points
      • Categorize or assign topics to attendees if appropriate
      • If necessary, provide background data before the meeting in a bullet point format
      • Develop a few questions that need to be answered (to stay on topic)
      • Request special equipment/room setup if required

     

    • Room setup
      • Reserve the room/location if necessary
      • Make sure room is set up appropriately for the specific meeting (if another meeting was there prior, can that format work for your meeting)
      • Provide a few notepads and pens in case they are needed
      • Test the equipment, monitors, lighting, temperature, etc.
      • Provide a pitcher of ice water and cups for guests

     

    • The Extras
      • If a meal is required ask about food restrictions, etc. (and provide mints or gum)
      • Provide trash/recycling bins and cleanup options
      • If guests are coming from out of town or outside the organization ensure they have directions, clear instructions on where to check in, who to ask for, etc.
      • Inform security or receptionist of incoming guests if necessary
      • Create a building map, contact sheet, etc. for invited guests
      • Make copies or provide data via a shared drive, jump drive, email, etc.
      • Take detailed minutes if appropriate
      • Keep the meeting focused on the topic during the allotted time and schedule additional meetings as needed

    I realize some of these may seem time consuming or simple, but it’s the little extras that can make a meeting more productive and the attendees more comfortable and ready to focus. With a clear agenda and appropriate setup, a meeting can be spent on the main topic, not on distractions or rearranging a room.

    What process do you always use to ensure a meeting is engaging?

     

    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

    The post Make Your Meetings More Engaging appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 16:15:57 on 2018/07/10 Permalink
    Tags: , , , meetings, ,   

    Getting the Most Out of Your Next Performance Evaluation 


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    performance_evaluation

    Scheduling a performance evaluation meeting and setting measurable goals can be stressful or even seem unproductive to some. The meeting is typically a way to evaluate the past year’s project management, acknowledge achievements, receive valuable feedback for performance improvement and create new goals for continued productivity. A performance evaluation is more than a method to measure outcomes for a company though, it’s also an opportunity to discuss professional and personal development opportunities that help each employee grow.

    I’ve spoken with several assistants that have voiced frustration at the standard process. I have personally experienced stress in the past too! Sometimes it is more difficult for administrative support staff to set measurable goals. There are ways to decrease the stress levels and frustration though! The process should actually be an exciting time to discuss progress and development goals that will help you maintain or create the position you want to excel in!

    Getting the Most Out of Your Next Performance Evaluation

    There are several tips for getting the most out of your next performance evaluation & reducing stress. Below are a few:

    • Throughout the year track each project and goal progress, additional duties added and positive feedback from others. Keeping track all year will help you easily prepare a list of projects you are most proud of completing and/or assisted with. Include as much information as possible; date range, project specific tasks, coworkers involved and try to include how that project tied into the company’s mission. Keep the file on your desktop or easily accessible.
    • Define and review your job description and connect completed goals & projects to one or more duties you are responsible for. If it’s a new project then a performance evaluation meeting is a great opportunity to point out the new responsibilities you have taken on.
    • When creating future goals ensure they not only support the company’s mission and department specific goals but also your own personal & professional goals & growth.
    • Setup brief progress meetings six months, three months and one month before your evaluation deadline to ask or confirm anticipated departmental or company growth, your progress, adjusting goals if needed and your manager’s specific goals so you are in tune with his or her vision while focusing on your own goals.
    • Accept constructive suggestions for improved productivity. Be prepared to ask questions & request justification if negative feedback is given.
    • Communicate with your manager to ensure you both understand the expectations of your position and confidently discuss the future vision for you and your position.
    • During the meeting, your manager should discuss expectations, ask your input on your performance, ask what resources you need to be as productive and comfortable as possible, ask if you have any concerns, discuss any professional development opportunities you are interested in and ask what areas you most want to improve in. If applicable and your manager does not ask these or similar questions you should be comfortable enough to bring them up during your meeting.

    Getting the most out of your next performance evaluation includes setting achievable and meaningful goals. These goals not only support work performance, but they also provide an opportunity for you to change what you don’t like about your position or ensure you maintain the workflow that you do enjoy. I like looking at this yearly evaluation as a way to reignite my passion for the work I do and the position I choose through the new goals I set.

    When setting goals, I suggest keeping in mind a method such as S.M.A.R.T.E.R (Specific, Meaningful, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound, Evaluate, Readjust). Making a spreadsheet with the method’s keywords as tab headers will help prepare you for your next evaluation and help you stay focused throughout the year.

    I have set several different goals over the years that I have evolved from and coworkers have shared some of their goals with me. Below are a few examples of general and job-specific goals:

    • Set a professional development goal whether it’s attending a conference, completing an online course or program, reading a certain book or two, scheduling time each week or month for webinars, computer program training, time management courses, etc. Learning is always a win-win for an employee & manager and progress is easily tracked.
    • Update phone extension list to ensure callers are directed to the appropriate person. This may require you to do some research and meet with other departments.
    • Develop department specific orientation process even if HR has a main practice ensure all new employees are familiar with your unique department and the manager’s procedures, vision, and expectations. This can be done via a checklist with feedback from your manager and coworkers.
    • Serve as department liaison and attend or participate in company-wide committee meetings to stay up to date on new policies and announcements and report back to manager and department.
    • Explore ways to reduce supply costs by 5% to 10%. Track all supply orders, communicate with the department to determine necessary items and compare monthly costs of previous year then report progress to manager.
    • Create email templates for responses to most frequently asked questions to save time.
    • Discuss the importance of a calendar time block for your manager to focus on emails, presentations, budget, etc. without interruption then create the blocks by a certain deadline.
    • Create a project checklist and ask all team members to use the form when asking for project assistance. The form may include date received, date needed, specific instructions, project number if applicable, links or shared files to additional information needed, etc. This is a more productive use of time-management, can be left when you are away from your desk and easily measured.
    • Create or reevaluate daily routine to be more productive. For example, spend the first-hour checking and responding to common or quick reply emails, go through the mail, process invoices, etc. At the end of the day write out a to-do list and prioritize tasks for the next day.
    • If applicable for your company and position, another goal could be to set up an auto-response to incoming emails from outside the company with answers to most frequently asked questions, common contact information, etc. Especially for weekends or after hours since some emails are basic questions and could be answered by an auto response.

    I hope you look forward to your next performance evaluation and get the most out of it! Please share your performance evaluation and goal setting tips in the comments section.

     

     

    dana_buchananDana 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

    The post Getting the Most Out of Your Next Performance Evaluation appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
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