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  • feedwordpress 13:30:07 on 2017/07/10 Permalink
    Tags: , , Organizational Skills, , , ,   

    Build Structure out of Chaos (Part 4 of 4 Part Series) 

    training_for_executive_assistants

    To end my 4 part series, I wanted to share my quick list of tips with you. In case you missed the rest of the series, you can read part 1 here, part 2 here and part 3 here. Remember that doing several little things throughout your day can also improve your productivity. You can pick and choose which ones you would like to try. Best of luck.

    1. Standardize processes.
    2. Focus on tasks of high value.
    3. Clarify objectives.
    4. Learn to think on paper.
    5. Anticipate upcoming work events or projects.
    6. Avoid backlogs of work by keeping information flowing.
    7. Flexibility leads to control. Use your “to do” list or other tools, but don’t let them control you.
    8. When given a project or task, get all the information you can at once.
    9. Excuse yourself from idle chatter after a few minutes.
    10. When involved in discussions, stick to the issue at hand.
    11. Finish what you start; avoid jumping around (multitasking).
    12. Keep an organized workspace.

    I hope you enjoyed this 4 part Series. I hope you continue to enjoy your summer.

    Joan Burge

    This blog was created from our Monday Motivators series. Monday Motivators is a weekly note offering practical ways to create a new mindset, change behaviors, develop positive relationships and thrive in the workplace with energy, effectiveness, and excellence.

    admin_training

    The post Build Structure out of Chaos (Part 4 of 4 Part Series) appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 13:30:23 on 2017/06/26 Permalink
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    Reducing Information Overload (Part 3 of 4 Part Series) 

    training_for_assistants

    To continue my series on better managing your day and work, today I am focusing on information overload. I’m sure you can relate. If you missed the prior parts of this series, you can read part 1 here and part 2 here.

    There’s just too much information out there! In fact, information processing accounts for half the gross national product—and most of it ends up on paper that someone has to read. You don’t have to fall prey to information overload. You just have to be more selective about the information you choose to take in. Here are five steps to becoming a picky information consumer.

    Step 1: Don’t read everything that comes to you. You simply can’t absorb everything you think you need to know. Once you admit that, you’ll be better able to prioritize, delegate or ignore the information that comes your way.

    Step 2: Assess your information sources. Take some time to decide which action, Web site, report or professional association information that isn’t of the highest quality.

    Step 3: Scan for information. When you open a publication, look through the table of contents first. Scan for topics and article summaries. Choose only articles or reports that you need to read. Don’t waste your time on information just because it’s mildly interesting to you. Stick to what’s important.

    Step 4: Use your highlighter. Once you commit to reading an article, underline any information you want to refer to later. Throw out any article or report where you haven’t highlighted any passages.

    Step 5:  Be an example. If you don’t want to get bogged down by long e-mails or voice messages, keep your own short. Let others know that they should keep their information as concise as possible—and mention it to them nicely when they don’t.

    Wishing you great success applying these steps this week!

    Joan Burge

    This blog was created from our Monday Motivators series. Monday Motivators is a weekly note offering practical ways to create a new mindset, change behaviors, develop positive relationships and thrive in the workplace with energy, effectiveness, and excellence.

    admin_training

    The post Reducing Information Overload (Part 3 of 4 Part Series) appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 15:30:06 on 2017/06/19 Permalink
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    7 Ways to Get Control of Your Day (Part 2 of 4 Part Series) 

    Get_Control_of_Your_Day

    In case you did not read part 1, I am writing a 4-part series around the topics of managing your day and time. I promise to keep these short and to the point.

    #1: Early in the day, clarify your top 5 priorities for the day. Instead of thinking about the 10 things or more you have to do today, narrow your list to your top 5 priority items that you must get done today. This will help you feel like you have control vs. feeling like you are being controlled by everything that pops up. And at the end of the day, you will feel good about your accomplishments.

    #2: Focus on the task at hand. One way to get things done and off your plate is to stay focused. Stay in the “flow.” This is what makes the difference between those who make great strides in their work and those who just run in circles throughout the day.

    #3: Reducing information overload. I will give you tips on how to do this in next week’s Monday Motivator.

    #4: Ask others for specific deadlines. This helps you prioritize your workload.

    #5: Recognize the time of day you are most productive and tackle the projects that consume the most brain power. For me, I am most productive from 6:00 am – 2:00 pm. At work, if at all possible, I work on the items or projects that consume my greatest cognitive abilities. Then later in the day, I focus on smaller items that don’t consume as much of my brain power. By doing so, I am highly effective and move through my work much faster.

    #6: Establish some quiet time throughout the day. One way to gain control is to just stop. Pause for 5 minutes. Revisit your Inbox, to do stack or list and then begin.

    #7: Plan ahead. A great way to get a jump on your day is to plan the night before. In other words, before you leave the office, organize and prioritize your work for the next day. This way when you arrive at your office the next day, you can hit the road running.

    This blog was created from our Monday Motivators series. Monday Motivators is a weekly note offering practical ways to create a new mindset, change behaviors, develop positive relationships and thrive in the workplace with energy, effectiveness, and excellence.

    monday motivators

    The post 7 Ways to Get Control of Your Day (Part 2 of 4 Part Series) appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 16:00:03 on 2017/06/12 Permalink
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    Managing Your Time (Part 1 of a 4 Part Series) 

    time_management

    I have been in the business world for 47 years now and one thing that never changes is managing our workload and setting priorities. Everyone I talk to is trying to keep up with the accelerated pace of business and change. At Office Dynamics, we always seem to be in a flurry of activity throughout the year but certain seasons are busier than others. Plus we always have to be thinking 6 – 12 months out because of being in the training industry.

    Regardless if this is your really busy season or not, I would like to offer you some of my greatest tips. I will do this in a 4 Part Series of Monday Motivators. Other topics I will address over the next 3 weeks are: Control Your Day and Get Things Done; Reducing Information Overload; Build Structure out of Chaos. I promise to keep these Motivators short and to the point since your time is precious.

    Managing your time is about . . .

    • Managing priorities and staying on the “A” priority before moving to B or C. Often people would rather do what is quick and easy. The truth is we need to stay focused on the “A” priority items of the day. We must not get pulled into the allure of what is quick and easy.
    • Being flexible throughout the day and quickly adapting to changes. While our To Do lists are great, as you know, flexibility is key. I always say that our To Do list must be fluid. It is just a guide but we can’t be married to it.
    • FOCUS!!! Hugely important in this age of non-stop distractions. Example: Can you even stay focused enough to read this entire Monday Motivator or are you watching what’s popping up in your Inbox? Or on your phone or listening to the conversation next to you?
    • Stopping throughout the day and assessing items to be done. I love to pause mid-afternoon and re-asses where I am with my work. I determine what I have accomplished thus far and what I must finish before the day ends. You can ask yourself these questions: 1) What must get done before day’s end? What is the negative impact if I do not get this done? 2) Am I currently focusing on the most important item in my leader’s eyes? 3) What is coming up in the next few days that I must take action on today? (be future-focused while being in the moment)
    • Using effective “tools.” We are so fortunate today to have so many tools and apps. While I love some of my old-fashioned methods, I would like to encourage you to talk to your peers and see what tools they use for greater efficiency.
    • Work smarter (not harder). I believe many of you who read my Monday Motivators work hard. Today it’s about working smarter; taking some time throughout your day to think, assess, decide and possibly delegate.

     

     

     

    The post Managing Your Time (Part 1 of a 4 Part Series) appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 13:45:56 on 2017/05/01 Permalink
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    The Power of One 

    admin_training

    Welcome to May! Such a lovely time of year. I hope everyone has recuperated from an exciting Administrative Professionals Week. We did a lot of celebrating at Office Dynamics. On Wednesday, April 26 I hosted a Facebook Live where I spoke about what I love about the administrative profession and gave tips on how to shine in the profession. In case you missed it, you can access it here.

    Well, last week was very exciting for me because once again, I witnessed The Power of One. For more than 2 decades I have been talking to assistants about The Power of One. The concept is that it only takes 1 person to create change or 1 person to create something awesome. I use a visual of candles on a table. I light the first candle. This represents 1 person who has an idea. They take action on their idea and talk to another assistant or someone else in the company. Then another candle is lit representing the spark created from the first person. Then those 2 people go out and talk to others and light the fire in them about their idea. And then those 4 or 6 people go out and light a spark in others and before you know it . . . BAM! Something wonderful occurs that can change the life of many.

    I want to thank Cindy McConnell, EA to the CEO of Shure Incorporated for approaching me last October. Cindy said that Shure Incorporated had a beautiful auditorium and that they would like to be a host site for me to hold a one day workshop or mini-conference. Well, of course, I said yes. The great part of having a host site like Shure was that they provided the venue and all the A/V so Office Dynamics was able to keep the registration cost very reasonable.

    After I said yes to Cindy and we decided on a date, Cindy went into action and enlisted her administrative team. The fire was lit and it spread like wildfire. We ended up having 120 assistants from 20 states attend our full day program, Building a Star Partnership, in Chicago at Shure Incorporated. The administrative team went above and beyond what I imagined and I am eternally grateful to the ladies who put love and attention into the event. I’d like to give thanks to: Christine Clark, Claire Dorner, Janet Higgins, Nicole Rok, and Grace Sikora.

    So what does this mean to you? It means you can create a wildfire in your organization. It means you don’t have to just sit on the sidelines and watch life go by at work. You can be a catalyst for change. You can create something that will touch the lives of many. It means you will fulfill using some of your greatest assets and talents. Cindy McConnell loves putting on events as they do that often at Shure. I could certainly tell Cindy and her team love being hosts and doing an excellent job.

    During my 20 year career as an assistant, I had many opportunities where I was the “1” creating change. I started administrative training in a few of the companies where I worked. I started a special group for Assistants to CEO’s in 1990 in Virginia Beach and the group is still together—the group I started! Wow. Do you know how good that makes me feel? But it’s not about me. It is about others and utilizing your talents to help others.

    I started Office Dynamics in 1990, when there was no one company specializing in in-depth training for administrative professionals. There were training companies like Skillpath and AMA but they offered tons of programs for all types of careers. I saw a gap. I wanted to only focus on the administrative profession. There was a lack of quality, meaty training for assistants. It made no sense. So I lit my own fire with passion, enthusiasm, hard work and a desire to improve the quality of work life for assistants around the world. Here I am 27 years later. We have touched the lives of tens of thousands of assistants around the world. Not only have we touched lives, but now there are many others getting on the bandwagon to educate and support assistants.

    Do you see the power just 1 person can have? Do you see you can make a difference in the world? But it does take certain behaviors and characteristics. Here is a checklist for you.

    • Passion
    • A desire to make a difference
    • Hard work; willing to roll up your sleeves and dig in
    • Patience (tons)
    • Energy
    • Persuasion skills
    • Enthusiasm
    • A desire to learn in the area you are passionate about
    • Craft your skill
    • Good communication skills
    • Organizational skills
    • Self-management
    • Building a strong network

    What have you noticed in your workplace that needs changing? Or maybe what is missing for your administrative community? What about a process that can increase productivity?

    I bet if you took 15 minutes to think about it, there is something you are longing to do or change. What are you waiting for? Life is short. Move into action.

    administrative_assistant_conference

    The post The Power of One appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
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