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  • feedwordpress 17:00:55 on 2018/06/20 Permalink
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    Office Dynamics Top 10 Blogs For Administrative Professionals 

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    Last week Office Dynamics sent an email to all of our subscribers saying, “Thank you,” and we also provided the Office Dynamics Top 10 Blogs For Administrative Professionals. We would like to make that message available to our social media and blog followers as well because you are part of this great family we have. Enjoy and once again, THANK YOU!

     


     

    Office Dynamics International has and always will be focused on YOU. Your training, your education, your professional advancement, and your overall well being is important to us.

    It is because of you that we are able to help and provide information to so many people and we just want to say THANK YOU!

    And as a thank you, we decided to provide you with our Top 10 Most Read Blogs. These are the 10 most popular blog posts that your peers in the industry (and outside the industry) have chosen to read.

    Please enjoy and feel free to comment on the posts and share them with your colleagues. If you wish to subscribe to the blog, please enter your email address in the subscribe section that is located at the top right of each blog post.

    Thank you so much,

    The Office Dynamics Team

     


     

    1. 9 Ways to Improve Your Organizational Skills

    2. Coping With Conflicting Priorities

    3. Why Being An Executive Assistant Is A Rewarding Career

    4. 8 Killer Tips For A Successful Executive And Assistant Partnership

    5. 3 Stages To Problem Solving For Administrative And Executive Assistants

    6. Qualities Of A Great Assistant

    7. A Secretary Vs An Executive Assistant

    8. Executive Assistant Time Management Tips

    9. How To Plan Business Travel & Business Travel Planning Checklists

    10. The Admin’s Guide To Organizing Digital Files

    The post Office Dynamics Top 10 Blogs For Administrative Professionals appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 17:30:15 on 2018/06/06 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Stress Management   

    5 Powerful Communication Strategies for Administrative Assistants 

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    Do have a healthy curiosity that you use in your day-to-day communications?

    I was inspired today to share with you 5 powerful communication strategies for administrative assistants that I often teach in my World Class Assistant™ Certification and Designation Program. However, I want to assure you that if you are not in the administrative profession, you will still greatly benefit from today’s topic. So continue reading.

    In order to excel in today’s workplace, you will need to be a good investigator.

    Why?

    Because so often in the fast-paced world we work in, people do not communicate well or perhaps better said, completely. What seems clear to them is incomplete to us.

    1. Ask Questions

    Learn to ask questions; specifically, the right question. The right question clarifies. It encourages details. The right question grants you the information necessary to perform the task for the purpose of completion with excellence.

    2. Ask The Next Question!

    The next question elaborates. It encourages additional helpful information. It is not badgering in tone; it does not interrupt the speaker (or it may be seen as argumentative). Asking the next question is a technique to gain additional details.

    3. Be Proactive

    There is no way around this one. If you want to sit in your chair and wait to handle “transaction-based” tasks that come all the way to your desk, you won’t be a good investigator!

    Ask, seek, compare, analyze, resource, hunt, gather, glean, and energize your work tasks by building your investigative skills to gain increasing knowledge so that you can make better decisions and become that “go to” person in your organization who will proactively get the information people need and want in an efficient manner.

    4. Be Resourceful

    Glean the Internet for reputable sources of information. Read the Wall Street Journal after your manager is done with it. Scour the publications and journals for pertinent information. Learn what your manager likes to follow, and become her eyes and ears on the subject.

    5. Use Caution In Relaying Potent Information

    Resist the temptation to share what you have heard or know if it will harm someone or break confidentiality. Remember never to harm the trust your executive or manager extends to you. Think carefully about the timing, venue, and reason you are sharing pertinent information with another.

    (content derived from the World Class Assistant™ Program) 

     

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    The post 5 Powerful Communication Strategies for Administrative Assistants appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 16:30:19 on 2018/05/03 Permalink
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    Avoid Burnout by Creating Your Own Utopia 

    Avoid Burnout

    In Utopia, burnout would be a term no one ever used or heard of. Everyone would be matched perfectly with the career they not only enjoyed but knew exactly how to succeed at. Unfortunately, burnout is real, it’s draining, emotional, stressful and typically affects both professional and personal lives. As an administrative professional for the past 20 plus years, I have learned how important it is to avoid burnout in one of the largest career fields in the world. One key point is keeping day to day tasks fulfilling even if you are not matched with your ideal position. Another key is personalizing the position with your uniqueness.

     

    Burnout creeps in once a position becomes routine, devalued or uninteresting. Attitude and creativity can extinguish even the smallest first spark of burnout. A typical position consists of a general duty and expectation list. You, the individual, bring life to that list. You have the power to either let that list define you or you define that list by using your experiences and personal positive attitude to create your own Utopia.

     

    Some days the administrative professional’s role is to maintain a sense of calm in chaos by dealing with last minute changes, communicating changes, preparing managers for the changes and balancing the other 20 unexpected tasks in such a way that managers are uninterrupted and carry out their schedule and duties efficiently. Other days are spent marking off tasks from a long to-do list and developing more efficient ways to accomplish goals and meet deadlines. Days are rarely uneventful; anything even resembling downtime can be filled with tasks that have been moved down a list that is re-arranged daily.

     

    So how do we ensure we take care of ourselves, keep our daily tasks fulfilling and avoid burnout?
    • Share your positive attitude with others. A positive outlook can make any position, day of chaos or routine task fulfilling. Avoid burnout by bringing your unique talents and skills to your position. When you share a part of your uniqueness with a workplace you connect with that position. Connection brings comfort and control.

     

    • Engage your team. Collaboration and efficiency is enhanced when a team works together, even if not on a particular project, unity leads to productivity. You can actively participate in team meetings, professional development training, reading and discussion of a book the group picks, or encourage more face to face interaction rather than numerous emails. Supporting a positive team-focused environment helps reduce stress that can cause burnout.

     

    • Plan a lunch away from the office once a month or at least a few times a year with your department team or administrative professional team. Don’t talk about work, get to know each other since communicating in a casual setting will ultimately enhance professional communication. Feeling comfortable asking for and offering work assistance promotes a healthy workplace.

     

    • Actively learn personally and professionally. Enhance work skills by learning as much as you can about the programs you use, organizational tips and meeting coordination. There are numerous free webinars, courses and a variety of professional conferences and seminars. It is imperative to also make time for yourself. Learning or enhancing interests can be incorporated easily into your daily routine. Read a few pages of interesting book, take a creative community education class, plan a day trip with your camera, schedule a spa day join a small group (writes, artists, entrepreneurs, parenting, etc.), journaling, be a tourist in your own city, schedule time with friends and family or other activity that encourages self-love. Making time for your life outside of work typically reduces stress allowing clearer thinking at work for better decision making.

     

    • Anticipate upcoming projects and deadlines. Planning gives you more time to evaluate the process and create a more productive to-do list and timeline.

     

    • Create your own work Utopia. Whether you work with a large team, independently, virtually, or in a positive or negative environment being in control of your happiness and productivity is extremely important. Find creative ways to turn a chaotic busy routine into a challenging, yet fun opportunity. Creating a Utopian workplace by participating in professional development trainings, sharing ideas and creating efficient procedures provides multiple ways to bring your unique talents to any position.

     

    The company, career field and position you choose needs your uniqueness. Confidently acknowledge your experience as a valuable asset. Continue to learn through professional and personal development to create an environment you choose to work in. Whether you plan to retire from your chosen position or working toward another goal you can choose the attitude you bring daily. Burnout cannot spark in a valued position with a positive administrative professional refusing to fan the flames.

     

    A positive attitude gives you power over circumstances instead of your circumstances having power over you.” – Joyce Meyer

     

    How do you uniquely create your own work Utopia and avoid burnout?

     

    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.

    www.danabuchanan.com

     

    The post Avoid Burnout by Creating Your Own Utopia appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 20:00:19 on 2018/05/01 Permalink
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    Before You Retaliate 

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    Before you retaliate

    It’s almost instinctive to yell back or to be offended at someone who is yelling at you—be it a co-worker or a manager. But yelling back or arguing accomplishes little. It can destroy a business relationship and certainly dims your professional image. So before you respond to a verbal attack, keep these things in mind.

    • Figure out what’s really going on. In each of the following cases, compassion—not retaliation—is in order.
    • Every one is liable to blow up during a rough day at work. If the person yelling at you isn’t known as a chronic jerk, then consider that the source of the blow-up could stem other reasons and not personal.
    • Consider that some people are just socially inept and know no other way to communicate.
    • Then, there are some people who crave the attention and know that yelling or being aggressive is one way to get it.
    • Listen before you leap to conclusions. Assume first that what a person is saying is true. More often than not, we tend to start making a list of what’s wrong with a person and miss the opportunity to really find out what’s at issue. At that point, no one is listening to what the other is saying.
    • Stay neutral. Instead of adding fuel to the argument by yelling back, deflect the hostilities. Don’t walk away. Instead, demonstrate a neutral position. Answer in a calm, steady voice or give an inane answer. It usually stops an argument cold.
    • And don’t handle this via email. Take advantage of a Human Moment.

    Forgiving is not forgetting; it’s letting of go of anger and hurt and moving on. Take time. It’s not easy to forgive with both your head and heart.

    – Joan Burge

    The post Before You Retaliate appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 21:30:52 on 2018/03/09 Permalink
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    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:

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

     
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