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: I am the office manager for an HVAC (heating, ventilation & air conditioning) company, We need field people, mechanics and helpers, that type of thing.  The type of workers we are looking for really don’t attend job fairs much.

I have tried advertising for help everywhere: small newspapers, large newspapers, the Web and tech schools.   Does anyone out there have any scathingly brilliant ideas on how to reach this type of worker to recruit them?  I would appreciate ANY suggestions.

Thanks so much.  -- Kelly Hogue, Warminster, PA

Question: It would be fun to hear from other admins about their most embarrassing job-related boo-boo. Things like forgetting to put something big on the boss's calendar, sending a broadcast e-mail when you didn't mean to. I know we all have a few "dirty little secrets" that might make the rest of us feel better about those extremely RARE occasions when we are less than perfect.  -- Anonymous

Question: I wanted to know what other companies do for time off.  Our company offers 2 weeks' vacation (3 weeks' after 10 years) plus 5 sick days each year, which can accumulate up to 30 days (sick leave only).  I have used all my vacation due to an emergency with my father-in-law and took a week's vacation.  I am short one day to attend my niece's wedding and was going to take the day off without pay.  Evidently, we are not allowed to due this.  If I do decide to take this off, then it will affect my review.  Can you take time off without pay if you want?

Related question: How does your company offer time off for doctor appointments? Can you use sick leave by the hour or can you take only in 4- or 8-hour increments (1/2 or full day off)?  -- Kenda

Question: Our office is about to undergo some reorganization.  Three of my four bosses will soon be moved to other departments within the company.  They'll be "swapping" departments with one another, and I've been asked to facilitate this change.  I'd love any ideas on how to make this a smooth transition for them.  How do you help a boss prepare for his or her successor?  What steps can I take in advance that will be most helpful when the move takes place?  -- Anonymous

Question: Our office is about to undergo some reorganization.  Three of my four bosses will soon be moved to other departments within the company.  They'll be "swapping" departments with one another, and I've been asked to facilitate this change.  I'd love any ideas on how to make this a smooth transition for them.  How do you help a boss prepare for his or her successor?  What steps can I take in advance that will be most helpful when the move takes place?  -- Anonymous

Question: Over the years, we’ve received many questions from readers of Personal Report for the Administrative Professional about how to plan — and pull off — successful meetings and events. Now, it’s your turn to brag. What’s the best single thing you've done that made your meeting or event a success?  -- The editors

Question: If you’ve taken on more responsibility in the past five years, you aren’t alone. Admins are filling more advanced roles, according to a recent survey of more than 3,200 members of the International Association of Administrative Professionals. So, what new responsibilities have you taken on in recent years, and have they made your job more enjoyable or just more stressful? (Look for more coverage of the IAAP survey in the July issue of Personal Report.)  -- The editors

Question: We are currently having difficulty getting new sales people.  We have placed ads in a major newspaper and a more local newspaper.  One of the ads also came with an online ad.  I even placed an ad with a local state office.  We are looking for new and better ways to advertise our current job openings in the sales department.  Does anyone have any suggestions as to what’s out there that works?  -- Anonymous

Question: We have three offices in our building and each office has a secretary.  One of our secretaries is a wonderful person but is too loud.  When I am around her, her laughter is so loud it hurts my ears.  It is disruptive to those working nearby and actually embarrassing when visitors are in the office.   Her immediate supervisor has skirted around the issue without addressing it directly, so she really has no idea what the problem actually is.  How can I help her and ease the pain on our eardrums?  -- Anonymous

Question: I just returned from a professional conference.  I've heard of people designating certain times as quiet time (or do not disturb time).  We discussed it, and the trainer suggested doing it on a daily basis, if needed. Each morning, just let your office workers know when you will not be available unless it is an emergency. I've heard of managers using this.  Do any of you admins use it and, if so, what is your process?  -- Jeannette, Rhode Island

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