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Admin Pro Forum

Share best-practices with your administrative peers. Pose a question, offer advice, or just be a fly on the wall.

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Question: "How do others handle personnel who wear strong and unpleasant perfume? What about other grooming and hygiene issues?" —Chris
Question: “I am an administrative assistant in a municipality’s executive office. For two years, I also handled the secretarial and receptionist duties. So I was thrilled when we recently hired an office manager (a retiree), a secretary (a young, spunky lady) and a receptionist. However, the way they work drives me nuts. The secretary does not take criticism well; the office manager doesn’t manage and is not tech savvy; and the receptionist asks dumb questions ('Can we give out our boss’ SSN?'). I'm tired of babysitting them and our boss won’t help. I have my own job to do; how do I get them to do theirs?” —Dusty
Question: “I am an administrative assistant in a municipality’s executive office. For two years, I also handled the secretarial and receptionist duties. So I was thrilled when we recently hired an office manager (a retiree), a secretary (a young, spunky lady) and a receptionist. However, the way they work drives me nuts. The secretary does not take criticism well; the office manager doesn’t manage and is not tech savvy; and the receptionist asks dumb questions (“Can we give out our boss’ SSN?"). I'm tired of babysitting them and our boss won’t help. I have my own job to do; how do I get them to do theirs?” —Dusty
Question: “I am executive assistant to an executive vice president. I’ve worked for him for nine years and we have a good relationship. For the past five years, I’ve supported him remotely from 200 miles away. We are both members of LinkedIn. While I would never ‘friend’ him on Facebook, LinkedIn is a professional network site. Is it appropriate for me to invite him to ‘connect’ with me?”   — Katherine
Question: “I have been with my company for 14 years. Two years ago I fell down a flight of stairs and injured my back. I walk with a cane and experience chronic pain. I've missed 35 days of work this year. My absences are covered by FMLA but have caused my relationship with my boss to deteriorate. She says I am “unreliable” and she “never knows” when I’ll be in. This hurts my feelings, stresses and depresses me. I love my job, but I feel like such a pariah. When I asked for accommodations like a flexible start time, her response was: "What are you going to do for us in return?" Nothing was done. I am our household’s main bread-winner so resigning is not an option. My boss and I used to be good friends. How do I get her to understand I do not take time off just to make her miserable?” – Patti
Question: “I have been with my company for 14 years. Two years ago I fell down a flight of stairs and injured my back. I walk with a cane and experience chronic pain. I've missed 35 days of work this year. My absences are covered by FMLA but have caused my relationship with my boss to deteriorate. She says I am “unreliable” and she “never knows” when I’ll be in. This hurts my feelings, stresses and depresses me. I love my job, but I feel like such a pariah. When I asked for accommodations like a flexible start time, her response was: "What are you going to do for us in return?" Nothing was done. I am our household’s main bread-winner so resigning is not an option. My boss and I used to be good friends. How do I get her to understand I do not take time off just to make her miserable?” – Patti
Question: “I have been a senior executive assistant for 11 years and want to transition to an administrative manager. But it seems no one wants to give me a chance without the proper experience. I worked to get my master's degree, which should show I am serious about career growth; however, I keep hearing I don't have the experience needed. I feel so stuck and disappointed. I spoke to my boss about my desire to move up. She listened, and commended me for it, but has done nothing to give me that push that I need (she is very influential). Any suggestions?” — Martha
Question: “I have been a senior executive assistant for 11 years and want to transition to an administrative manager. But it seems no one wants to give me a chance without the proper experience. I worked to get my master's degree, which should show I am serious about career growth; however, I keep hearing I don't have the experience needed. I feel so stuck and disappointed. I spoke to my boss about my desire to move up. She listened, and commended me for it, but has done nothing to give me that push that I need (she is very influential). Any suggestions?” — Martha

Question:  “My directors are always late for meetings—usually by more than 10 minutes. I've tried to work with them, give them ideas, support them the best I can to keep them on-time, but it's a struggle and progress is slow. I've tried to schedule more time between meetings and all the usual ideas to help keep them on time. I feel their being so late is unprofessional and can come across as rude. Has anyone found something that has worked for this problem?” — Elizabeth

Question:  “My directors are always late for meetings—usually by more than 10 minutes. I've tried to work with them, give them ideas, support them the best I can to keep them on-time, but it's a struggle and progress is slow. I've tried to schedule more time between meetings and all the usual ideas to help keep them on time. I feel their being so late is unprofessional and can come across as rude. Has anyone found something that has worked for this problem?” — Elizabeth

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