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  • 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 17:35:34 on 2017/04/06 Permalink
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    Gift Ideas For Administrative Professionals Day 

     

    Administrative Professionals_Day_Gift_IdeasFinding the perfect gift for your administrative assistant can be a daunting task since flowers and lunch no longer cut it. Today’s executive or administrative assistant wants a gift that is long-lasting. You might be thinking…. what about a cool coffee mug? Or what about a travel business tote or beautiful Levenger notepad and pen? Maybe you were considering a gift certificate to your assistant’s favorite restaurant or spa.

    While those might be lovely gifts, they don’t really have the same impact as the gift of education. And the gift of education does not come easy or often for your assistant. In fact, thousands of administrative assistants will never attend an in-depth training program, conference, or take an online course because his or her company won’t pay for it. How sad is that when you consider organizations will easily fund training for their executives and managers? Yet, the administrative assistants who support them every day, rarely let them down and give with their heart, get little training.

    If you want to be a stand-out executive with your assistant, I highly recommend giving one of the following gifts for Administrative Professionals Day or Week:

    ADMINISTRATIVE PROFESSIONALS WEEK IS APRIL 24 – 28, 2017.

    If you’re an administrative professional, please leave a comment below and let the world know what you would like for Administrative Professionals Day!

    The post Gift Ideas For Administrative Professionals Day appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 13:45:18 on 2017/04/06 Permalink
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    NOT, “Just An Admin!” 

    Have you ever said, or heard an admin say, “I’m just an admin?” I have. And I’ll admit it – I’ve said it too. Then one day I discovered that every admin is valued and the true value of the profession of the administrative assistant!

    I’d like to share my journey of discovery with you. It began several years ago when I started working for Mr. H as a temp. What started out as a two-week assignment ended up lasting for seven years! During the first week, he asked me to take care of the accounts payable and receivable.

    I told him, “I’ve never done this before. I’m happy to help but I’m not a bookkeeper, I’m JUST an admin.” He said, “Look through our records and see if you can figure it out.”

    So I did!

    Later he asked me to figure out our DOS Computer Programming.

    I said, “Mr. H. I’m not a computer software expert, I’m JUST an admin.” He said, “I think you can do it and handed me the programmer’s binder.”

    It took time, effort, mistakes and a lot of painful focus to learn and ultimately, I was successful.

    Much later he told me we were going to relocate the office to a town 60 miles away. He asked me to find a location, negotiate a lease, remodel the space if needed and take care of all interior decorating and procurement.

    I said, “Mr. H I’ve never done this before. I’m not a contractor or an interior designer, I’m JUST an admin.” He said, “I think you can do it, let me know if you have any questions.”

    I got started, one small piece of the project at a time, one step at a time. Three months later I selected the location, negotiated the lease, remodeled the space and purchased new furniture, office equipment, and supplies. The project was successfully accomplished.

    Later I was recruited by Mr. W – he made it clear that my first priority was to create a highly functioning admin team and to assist him with his management team.

    I told him, “I’m honored to work for you. I’ve been an executive assistant for several years and I’ve received a lot of training but I’m not a facilitator or a trainer. I’m JUST an admin.” He said, “I know you are capable of this assignment and we need you to do a great job. I’ve got your back and I support your judgment 100%. If you run into any road blocks let me know.”

    It wasn’t easy, there was trial and error, lots of candid conversations and over time we were not only surviving, we were thriving. Mr. W’s confidence in me propelled my performance to a new level. I rose to his level of expectations. We became a united front and trusted and believed in each other.

    Years later, I was working for Mr. K, by this time I had much more experience and was confident in my capabilities. I knew I my job was to make him be more successful with me than he could be without me. We went through a huge reorganization and he routinely asked me for my feedback. I told him what he needed to hear, not what he wanted to hear. He valued and respected my feedback, even if the messages at times were difficult to hear. We developed a strong partnership and trusted one another completely.

    As I reflect upon my career, I can easily see how I was valued:

    • When Mr. W’s wife told her husband he needed me for his business partner, I knew I was more than JUST an admin. I was a trusted colleague.
    • When I was able to create a highly functioning admin team, I knew I was more than JUST an admin! I was a highly respected professional.
    • When Mr. K and I talked about what he wanted his lasting legacy to be and for seven years I helped make that legacy a reality, I knew I was more than JUST an admin! I was a trusted advocate and business partner.
    • When I helped Mr. K through his transition to retirement and assisted his replacement, Mr. A into his new role as the leader of the company, I knew I was more than JUST an admin! I was a change agent, confidant and advisor.

    I know my story is all too familiar for other administrative assistants. We are all more than “JUST” and admin. Administrative assistants go above and beyond and take on new assignments with little to no background, training or experience. Our role is no longer confined to typing letters, answering the phone, scheduling meetings and travel. The role of the administrative assistant requires a diverse skill set, high emotional intelligence and strong business acumen to get through the day to day environment of today’s demanding environment. At any given moment we are asked and expected to be:

    • Calendar Managers
    • Project Coordinators
    • Correspondence Experts
    • Facility Managers
    • Compliance Officers
    • Office Managers
    • Bookkeepers
    • Computer Software Experts
    • Key Influencers
    • Negotiators
    • Change Agents
    • Communication Specialists
    • Vendor Relationship Managers
    • Public Relation Managers
    • Personnel Managers
    • Trainers
    • Facilitators
    • Creative Event Planners
    • Expert Travel Agents
    • Leaders

    We are also the trusted confidant, the informed advisor, the compassionate counselor and the ambassador!

    Administrative assistants are the ultimate business partner and that is why YOU are valued!

    Join me in making the commitment to never, ever, ever, ever say, “I’m JUST an Admin” again! Instead, hold your head up high and say, I’m an Administrative Professional!

    By Peggy Vasquez

    International Speaker / Author / Chief Executive Assistant

    www.peggyvasquez.net

    Come see Peggy live at our 24th Annual Conference For Administrative Excellence!

    This blog is part of our 2017 Blog-A-Thon. Please leave a comment or share the blog for your chance to win one of our amazing giveaways! The more blogs you comment on and share, the more chances you have to win. If you’d like to learn more about our Blog-A-Thon you can do so here. Hint: Subscribe to our blog in the upper right-hand corner so you never miss a blog.

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    The post NOT, “Just An Admin!” appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 17:00:14 on 2017/04/03 Permalink
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    Joan’s Greatest Administrative Secrets Revealed! 

    Joan_BurgeWelcome to April. Wow, where is the time going?

    April is one of my favorite months because, here at Office Dynamics, we get to celebrate the wonderful accomplishments of those in the administrative profession! In case you are not aware, Administrative Professionals Week is April 24 – 28. But we celebrate the entire month of April. One of the major ways we do that is to host our annual blog-a-thon whereby we post a blog every work day in the month of April. Aside from my blogs, we have several guest bloggers providing amazing information!

    To kick off the celebration, I hosted a webinar yesterday for 5,000+ assistants worldwide whereby I revealed my secrets to success in the profession. I had 29 secrets! I would like to share just a few of them with you. If you would like to hear all of them, you can watch the replay of the live event.

    1. I didn’t always play by the rules. That doesn’t mean I did things that were unethical or illegal. I liked breaking the status quo (and I still love doing that today.) Look at work and situations in a different light. Keep your eyes open for processes that need to be changed or new processes that need to be implemented. Shake things up! One way to stand out is to shake things up in a good way.

    2. Inserted myself into my executive’s world. I didn’t wait for my executives to invite me into their world. When I was an assistant, I would take home the trade journals and periodicals my executive read so I could understand his world and understand the language. While I didn’t read every page, I certainly gained perspective. This is a strategy anyone in any profession can use.

    3. Set healthy boundaries. It is really important to set healthy boundaries in the workplace. If someone is doing something or saying something that is unacceptable to you, then you need to speak up in a professional and assertive manner.

    4. Thirst for knowledge. For some reason, I have always embraced a growth mindset. Since I got out of high school and went right into the workforce, I was hungry to learn in any way possible. I did not go to college by choice and it did not stop me from being successful in my work because I am a sponge.

    I have identified 3 levels of learning.

    1. Peer to peer (Basic, Foundational)—these are the great tips you learn from your peers; the people who are in the same job family as you.
    2. Senior assistants (Advanced)—this is when we learn from people who are in our profession but a level or two above us. When I was new in the profession, I looked to the senior assistants. I watched everything they did and how they acted (good and bad).
    3. Outside of my profession (Master)—this is where you really gain an advantage over others. You have to step outside your narrow world and learn from subject matter experts. There are millions of them! Some of my favorite people are Daren Hardy, Brian Tracy, Tony Robbins, and Simon Sinek.

    With my thirst for knowledge, I was willing to invest in myself. Thousands of employees tell me they can’t attend training because their company won’t pay for it. That is short-term thinking and it makes me sad because it tells me that an individual doesn’t think enough of themselves to invest in their own education. As Brian Tracy says, “Investing in yourself is the best investment you will ever make.” I agree 100%. When you invest in yourself, you will take what you learn with you the rest of your life. And no one can ever take it away from you!

    5. Always took my administrative career seriously from early on and saw it as a profession. This is important for all assistants, managers and coworkers to remember the administrative profession is a true profession! These are the people who run the lives of top executives. These are the individuals who put up with all the stuff every day, put themselves second and third on the list, manage a multitude of responsibilities, make their executives look good, and are confidantes. They should be treated with courtesy and respect.

    If you are an assistant reading this, I hope you have a fabulous month! Please sign up for the Blog-a-thon by subscribing to the blog in the upper right corner and you will automatically receive the daily post in your inbox. Comment on the blogs and share them so you can be entered to win prizes all month long.

    If you are not an assistant and you’re reading this, please be sure to sincerely recognize the administrative support professionals in your organization. And remember to not ask your assistant to order her own flowers; which by the way, assistants don’t just want flowers and lunches. They want a long-lasting gift. If you are looking for ideas, go to the Office Dynamics Success Store.

    Happy April everyone!

    This blog is part of our 2017 Blog-A-Thon. Please leave a comment or share the blog for your chance to win one of our amazing giveaways! The more blogs you comment on and share, the more chances you have to win. If you’d like to learn more about our Blog-A-Thon you can do so here. Hint: Subscribe to our blog in the upper right-hand corner so you never miss a blog.

    The post Joan’s Greatest Administrative Secrets Revealed! appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 13:17:37 on 2017/03/17 Permalink
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    Developing Your “Wow” Factor 

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    Some assistants have it. Some 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™ certificate 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).

    We know that investing in a comprehensive training program like World Class Assistant is a big decision. That’s why on March 29, 2017, Joan Burge will be hosting a live Q & A session to address your questions and help you decide if it’s the right fit for you. We hope you’ll join us to learn more and have some fun!

    Register Today

    The post Developing Your “Wow” Factor appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
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