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  • feedwordpress 09:27:11 on 2017/11/09 Permalink
    Tags: , aggressive, , , , , , , , passive, , , workplace communication, world class assistant   

    7 Tips for Executive Assistants Who Want To Be More Assertive 

    Assertive_vs_Aggressive_Communication

    Do you want to be more assertive?

    Learning how to tactfully voice your opinions and assert your needs as an executive assistant is important. Many assistants have crossed the line from assertive to aggressive. So what is the difference between assertive and aggressive? Isn’t being aggressive good?

    Many people confuse assertive and aggressive behavior. This is especially true of women, who until recent years, were often taught to associate passiveness with femininity. As a result women often are reluctant to take the initiative in the workplace – whether to resolve a conflict, solve a problem, or present an idea—for fear of being labeled pushy or obnoxious. 97% of administrative professionals are female.

    What’s the difference between being assertive and aggressive?

    Before I go on, let me clarify the differences between passive, aggressive and assertive. By explaining the 3 of these, it will help you better understand the differences.

    Passive: A passive person only cares about others and what they think and making sure everyone else’s needs are met. You might be thinking, “Isn’t that a good thing?” No. Not when we sacrifice ourselves or what we need to get done for the sake of others. Passive people can become resentful or blow up later, which then becomes aggressiveness.

    Aggressive: An aggressive person only cares about themselves; therefore, they don’t care what they say or how they say it as long as they get what they want.

    Assertive: An assertive person cares that their own needs are met AND cares about others. So they think about how they will communicate in a caring way and get what they need.

    We all have needs to be met in the workplace so we can do our job and finish projects on time. We also have to make sure people do not walk all over us or be a cupcake! Assertiveness is the way to go because it is the happy medium. You care about yourself and your care about others.

    Benefits of Being Assertive

    • Reduces anxiety.
    • Provides a feeling of control.
    • Increases self-esteem.
    • Builds confidence.
    • We get resolution of the situation.
    • Less stress and wasted time.
    • You choose when to push a situation or not.
    • Protects you from being taken advantage of.

    We all know the famous Mayo Clinic. Here is what the Mayo Clinic has to say about being assertive. “Being assertive is typically viewed as a healthier communication style. Being assertive offers many benefits. It helps you keep people from walking all over you. On the flip side, it can also help you from steamrolling others.”

    Risk is Involved
    Being assertive involves some risk because you aren’t guaranteed of the outcome. You have to be willing to take a chance, knowing the situation may not turn out like you hope it will. However, you have a better chance of having your needs met with assertive action than by being passive or aggressive.

    When communicating assertively, it’s a good idea to start at the end—what you want to see happen and then work back. Make sure you clearly communicate your needs or desires. When these are communicated in a direct, tactful manner, you most likely will see the result you expected in the beginning.

    Weigh the Pros And Cons
    If you are doubtful as to whether to assert yourself in a particular situation, you should weigh the pros and cons. It is not the number of pros vs. cons that is as important as the impact of each pro and con.

    7 Steps to Be More Assertive

    1. Outwardly confront something instead of holding it in or stewing over it. Passive people hold things in. They keep their feelings buried and do not like confrontation. Therefore, they are walked over and stressed out. While you may want to take some time to think about the situation and how you want to respond, do not sit on it for days and weeks. In fact, the sooner you confront a situation or something someone said to you, the better. Just choose your words carefully.
    2. State their opinions clearly. You are entitled to your opinion. We are not clones of each other. When communicating with others take time to be clear when expressing your opinions and especially do not say anything that would hurt another person’s feelings.
    3. Walk away at your choosing. Passive people walk away because they feel intimated by a person or the situation. An assertive person walks away because “it’s” just not worth their time or energy.
    4. Are active, not reactive. Assertive people take action but they also stop and think before they take action. Again, they craft the message they want to deliver so the other person will be open to what they say.
    5. Establish deadlines. You can start this today! Many executive and administrative assistants will ask, “When do you need this?” Of course, the common answer is, “As soon as you can get it to me?” Or, “As soon as possible.” Learn to ask people, “By when do you need this?” Get the people who assign you tasks or special projects to commit to the latest date by which they need something, not the soonest. This helps the person giving you the assignment set their own priorities and helps you prioritize your workload.
    6. Do not accept inappropriate behavior. If there is anything that does not feel right or appropriate to you in the workplace, you must tell the offending person their action or words are not acceptable to you. A very simple example for assistants is the person who always comes into the assistant’s workspace and takes pencils or pens or whatever. If you don’t like that, then say something. That is a very simple example. My point is you do not have to accept behaviors that make you frustrated, stressed, or uncomfortable. My favorite saying is, “People will continue to treat you as you allow them to.”
    7. Go to the source. People have a tendency to complain to their friends or co-workers about someone at work who upset them or who they don’t like. That does not change the situation or how you feel—at least not permanently. When something arises with another person, you need to go directly to the source. Again, use positive communication skills. If you hear something via third party, make sure you have all your facts before going to the source.

    “We are learning to find a balance between being too passive and/or too aggressive, instead, learning to be assertive when presenting ideas and/or suggestions.” – World Class Assistant Part 1 Graduates (For more wisdom from these class participants check out the slideshare below by my World Class students.

    Joan Burge

    Benefits of Attending the World Class Assistant Certificate Program (as shared by course participants)

     

    Find More Information About World Class Assistant Training

    The post 7 Tips for Executive Assistants Who Want To Be More Assertive appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 15:30:41 on 2017/01/16 Permalink
    Tags: , baby boomers, communication gap, , gen-xers, generational communication, , millenials, , , nexters, , veterans, world class assistant   

    Bridge the Generational Communication Gap 

    How_To_Communicate_In_The_Workplace

    We can bridge the generational communication gap between Gen-Xers, Nexters, Baby Boomers and Veterans. We just have to understand and appreciate the uniqueness of each.

    If you read the January 9 Monday Motivators, you are aware that I am writing a 3 part series on communication to kick off the New Year! Communication is the umbrella of our relationships and interactions. It is at the core of what can help us be successful in the workplace. If we care about having impact and connecting with others, we have to consider the manner in which we communicate—the tools we use, the words, presentation of information, timing and so much more.

    This week I am focusing on generational differences. This is something we cover in great depth at our World Class Assistant™ Certification course in Las Vegas. I’m sure everyone reading this can relate because the various generations are all around us.

    Here are some tidbits for consideration when communicating with these 4 generations.

    Veterans

    Yes, they are still in the workplace and are great contributors. Some of their core values are: dedication, conformity, law and order, patience, respect for authority and believe in logic not magic. If you understand this, do you see how you would change your approach and words you use?

    • Don’t dictate
    • Recognize their hard work
    • Treat them with respect
    • Be precise and organized
    • Emphasis on work process
    • Be practical
    • Communicate in a logical fashion

    Boomers

    Some of the core values of boomers are optimism, teamwork, and personal gratification. They are driven and have a love/hate relationship with authority.

    • Prefer communicating in person
    • Converse with them about their work
    • Be respectful of their needs
    • Show encouragement (remember, they tend to be optimists)
    • Value their years of hard work and experience
    • They want to be kept abreast of trends

    Gen-Xers

    Core values include techno literacy, fun, informality, self-reliance and thinking globally

    • Be informal
    • They love feedback, especially when they have done a good job
    • Make it fun
    • Autonomy
    • They don’t want to be dictated to; want to be a partner.
    • Quality vs. quantity
    • Share the big picture

    Nexters

    (Also referred to as the New Kids, Millennials, Gen Y, Echo Boomers, The Internet Generation) They tend to be optimistic, prefer collective action, social, and value diversity and morality.

    • Create participative conversation
    • Communicate electronically
    • Be supportive of their ideas and feelings
    • Avoid dictating to a Nexter
    • Build their confidence
    • Encourage them
    • Talk to them as a friend/mentor

    It is well worth taking the time to understand the various generations and communicate in a way that the individual needs. This will open more doors; create opportunities; reduce conflict; build rapport and create win-win situations.

    When did you bridge the generational communication back at work? Share with us in the comments below.

    Best of luck!

    Joan Burge

    The post Bridge the Generational Communication Gap appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
  • feedwordpress 19:49:16 on 2016/12/13 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , creating a career portfolio, , , , , professional development for assistants, , , seminar for assistants, strategic assistant, , wca, , world class assistant   

    12 Days of Christmas Webinar: Strategies for Being a World Class Assistant 

    In today’s free webinar Joan shares Strategies for Being a World Class Assistant and she covers the topic of Creating a Career Portfolio. So much great information in this webinar. Please enjoy the replay.

    Watch the replay: Strategies for Being a World Class Assistant

    Download the Handout: Strategies For Being A World Class Assistant

    Download the Chat Archive: Day 9 Chat Archive 12 Days

    Download Your Certificate of Attendance: Certificate-Of-Attendance-Strategies To Being A World Class Assistant

     

    Additional Resources From This Webinar

    Word Trippers – for better writing in 2017.

    Boost Your Professionalism Through Better Writing – Webinar Replay with Barbara McNichol

    TRAVO Preferred – pre-qualify for this webinar on Travel Planning for Assistants with TRAVO Preferred.

     

    Special Offers

    The post 12 Days of Christmas Webinar: Strategies for Being a World Class Assistant appeared first on Office Dynamics.

     
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