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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: “We hold monthly Board of Administrator meetings, and I have tried several ways to organize the packet information: using colored paper with tabs for each discussion section; color-coded tabs only for those items needing approval; binders; and report covers (with agenda on top and reports in order of agenda). I have been raked through the coals several times for not being organized because they have to flip through too much to find what they need. Any ideas on how I can better organize the material?”
Question: “Does anyone have an established procedure for setting up international travel for managers: passports, visa procedures, itineraries, finding dependable local transportation, hotels, etc.? This is a four-person office, so standards are carried out each time.” — Lee
Question: “I am looking at different ways to take risks in the workplace/office. Where can I find information on this topic?” — Lisa Hensley
Question: “Our company wants to establish a policy for maternity leave or long-term sick leave. We’re a small company and have never formally established a policy. Since we’re growing, we want to enable our employees to take leave without using all their vacation time. What are some suggestions that have worked for other companies?” — Sydney Eckersley
Question: “I am an administrative assistant with a busy schedule working for a senior director.  My problem is our receptionist, who works right outside my office. She talks on the phone constantly, does personal work and has student assistants coming and going 20 hours per week. I am so frazzled listening to her and then hearing her tell everyone who will listen how overworked she is.  I don’t supervise her, but her work is minimal at best. She is barely literate, and no one will bring it to her boss’s attention when she makes mistakes — or neglects to meet their requests.  But — surprise, surprise — she’s a great receptionist.  It bothers me because when raises are given, they’re all across the board with no incentives! And I have to listen to it all day long. What can I do?” — Judi
Question: “I work in a department that is divided into teams. I am the department administrative assistant, supporting about 25 people. The department celebrated a project completion where everyone on the team received a project completion gift, which included everyone in my department. I didn’t work directly on the project but did a lot of administrative tasks. I didn’t receive a gift, which is fine, but my boss invited everyone to the conference room to present the gifts and acknowledge a successful project completion – but me. He left me at my desk and didn’t invite me to be a part of the celebration. Is it wrong to feel left out and not a part of the team?” — Ann Harris
Question: “Is it appropriate to ask during an interview what the company policy is regarding giving references? I worked for a company for two years, and then decided to move on. It was then that I learned about the company’s strict “no-reference” policy. It was not mentioned in the employee manual. Now I have a gap in my references that looks bad through no fault of my own.” — Donna Byerly
Question: “I work for a small company and right now we give all of our employees, both salaried and hourly, five paid sick days per year.  The company is deciding if hourly employees should continue to get this benefit.  These hourly employees work a full 40-hour week.  What do other companies do?” — Nancy Shortino
Question: “How can I get a promotion if I am an administrative assistant and work in manufacturing? I have been at the same position 15 years. Could I propose a new one? What do you suggest?” — Rose Gonzalez
Question: “I am a full-time working mother of two children, one is 4 years old and the second is 21 months. Recently, I proposed a flexible schedule at my job so that I could pick up my 4-year-old from preschool, Monday through Friday.  I currently work until 4:30 pm and my children go to bed at 7 pm.   Does anyone have any ideas on how I can propose this to my boss in a way that sounds good to my boss and works for me?” — Tracy Fehd
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