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Empower your executive

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in Dealing with Bosses,Office Management

All administrative professionals I work with have more on their plate than ever before. They’re supporting an increasing number of executives and taking on additional job responsibilities that previously were considered managerial—while still performing their day-to-day duties. Can you relate?

I recently spoke to a group of admins at their large corporation. It wasn’t unusual for them to spend up to 45 minutes shuttling between their office and another building on campus to dial an international conference call for executives. I suggested they have the following dia­­­logue with their team (which can be adapted to fit other scenarios):

“In the interest of saving our company time and money, I’d like to set up a time with each team member to walk them through the process of making any outbound call so I can put my focus on more pressing deliverables. When would you like to meet to make this happen?” As an aside, think about creating a wallet-size laminated instruction card for each executive should they forget.

Some may see such a move as risky, but when your job is now that of two (or more) people and you’re expected to do it in a traditional work day, the numbers don’t add up.  

Another company I worked with has their executives use a software program with a free smartphone app from Concur, with the goal of streamlining the expense report process. Savvy admins took the time to educate and simplify the steps for their supervisors, who could then scan and enter receipts directly through their smartphone.

If you’re going to grow the number of executives you serve, yet the number of people supporting that growth remains the same, you may reconsider and start empowering your executive. Try the following approach:

“Here are two or three solutions to daily tasks that would make the entire department more efficient and effective. It would also give me the time necessary to focus on (event planning, project coordination, reviewing contracts, gathering financials, working in the database—whatever is vital to your supervisor and team).”

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