Admin Pro Forum

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

Question: “What should I do about a co-worker who takes advantage of a boss-less office?  My boss's main office is in Massachusetts, but she also manages my two-person office in New York remotely.  This requires a large amount of trust from my boss.  My co-worker, however, walks into the office late, but leaves on time every single day. Plus, she stops working 10 to 15 minutes early to use the restroom, shut down her computer and pack up. Further, she constantly makes personal calls on the office phone, which we share!  I know that if my boss were here, my co-worker would not be conducting herself in this manner.  How do I bring this to the attention of my boss without appearing like a troublemaker?” —Jamie

Question: “What should I do about a co-worker who takes advantage of a boss-less office?  My boss's main office is in Massachusetts, but she also manages my two-person office in New York remotely.  This requires a large amount of trust from my boss.  My co-worker, however, walks into the office late, but leaves on time every single day. Plus, she stops working 10 to 15 minutes early to use the restroom, shut down her computer and pack up. Further, she constantly makes personal calls on the office phone, which we share!  I know that if my boss were here, my co-worker would not be conducting herself in this manner.  How do I bring this to the attention of my boss without appearing like a troublemaker?” —Jamie

Question: “What networking groups are best for someone with administrative support responsibilities that include a great deal of marketing? How can I tell which networking groups are best for me?” — Kathy Barnes

Question: “What networking groups are best for someone with administrative support responsibilities that include a great deal of marketing? How can I tell which networking groups are best for me?” — Kathy Barnes

Question: "I work at a company that loves meetings. I support a C-level executive and am always looking for ways to reduce the amount of meetings he needs to attend. I’ve tried reducing the length of meetings, sending delegates, changing the frequency (quarterly instead of monthly), handling more topics via e-mail and scheduling them over lunch or dinner. Every few months, we review all scheduled meetings to see whether we can cancel anything.  And yet there still are not enough hours in the day to accommodate all the high- priority meetings. Does anyone have additional suggestions for eliminating the amount of meetings?"  — Angela Van Cleve

Question: "I work at a company that loves meetings. I support a C-level executive and am always looking for ways to reduce the amount of meetings he needs to attend. I’ve tried reducing the length of meetings, sending delegates, changing the frequency (quarterly instead of monthly), handling more topics via e-mail and scheduling them over lunch or dinner. Every few months, we review all scheduled meetings to see whether we can cancel anything.  And yet there still are not enough hours in the day to accommodate all the high- priority meetings. Does anyone have additional suggestions for eliminating the amount of meetings?"  — Angela Van Cleve

Question: "I am on a task force to develop a "desk audit" or "task audit" that will give our 20-member staff a better sense of how our time is spent, where we can become more efficient, and address unanticipated tasks. Our strategic planning consultants have told us that it would be best to develop our own workflow audit, as there are few models in the not-for-profit world.  They recommend choosing an "appropriate" unit of time and reporting frequency, making it easy and sharing data with staff frequently to show progress, but we're still feeling daunted by the task.  Has anyone developed a desk/task audit that they'd be willing to share?  How did you make it palatable to your co-workers?"  — Louise

Question: "I am on a task force to develop a "desk audit" or "task audit" that will give our 20-member staff a better sense of how our time is spent, where we can become more efficient, and address unanticipated tasks. Our strategic planning consultants have told us that it would be best to develop our own workflow audit, as there are few models in the not-for-profit world.  They recommend choosing an "appropriate" unit of time and reporting frequency, making it easy and sharing data with staff frequently to show progress, but we're still feeling daunted by the task.  Has anyone developed a desk/task audit that they'd be willing to share?  How did you make it palatable to your co-workers?"  — Louise

"Our office allows a more casual attire in the summer. But some of the employees push it way too far. It doesn't help that the VP in charge of the office likes to wear shorts, so everyone else thinks it should be OK. We don't have any written rules on this, but I think it's hurting our image (as some of our sales reps sometimes have clients in for meetings). How can I present this to 'Mr. Casual' VP...or should I? -- Kathleen

"Our office allows a more casual attire in the summer. But some of the employees push it way too far. It doesn't help that the VP in charge of the office likes to wear shorts, so everyone else thinks it should be OK. We don't have any written rules on this, but I think it's hurting our image (as some of our sales reps sometimes have clients in for meetings). How can I present this to 'Mr. Casual' VP...or should I? -- Kathleen