Avoid legal trouble when e-mailing — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily
Most Admins have access to their bosses’ e-mail inbox. And it’s not uncommon for assistants to reply to messages on their bosses’ behalf. But if you’re sending e-mail at the boss’s behest, as if you are the boss, you may be breaking the law, says Annette Marquis of Triad Consulting. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act makes it illegal to do so in a publicly traded company, although many Sarbanes-Oxley rules extend to smaller, nonpublic companies, as well.
“Sometimes, bosses like it when you print out their e-mail for them, so they can reply by hand and have you send it,” says Marquis. “But you’re taking on a lot of legal risk in the workplace by doing that.”
Her advice: Find a way out of that arrangement quickly.
You can do that in Microsoft Outlook by gaining Delegate status, allowing you to send messages or schedule meetings “on behalf of” your boss. Your manager can set it up on her computer this way: 1. Click Options on the Tools menu. 2. Click Delegates tab. 3. Click Add and select your name.
It’s up to her to decide how much permission to grant. A private boss may opt to hide the bulk of her folders, while a major delegator may give you permission to reschedule meetings, reply to e-mail and delete digital clutter.
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