Managing the Boss

Problem: An administrative assistant works for several Johnny-come-lately bosses who think nothing of showing up late for meetings. What can she do to thwart the rude habit? Some of our readers had solutions:
A frustrated admin recently vented on our online forum: “I’m at my wit’s end!” None of the managers was “participating” in her attempts to keep the office organized. Our advice: Start over by telling managers how a tracking system ben­efits them.
The best executive assistants are indispensable. But, initially, many have trouble developing the trust and understanding needed for a strong assistant-boss relationship. Trudy Vitti knows how difficult the initial steps of a new assistant-boss relationship can be …
Executives are struggling with time management now more than ever, given the “doing more with less” phi­­losophy that reigns in most workplaces. Ask your boss: “How can I open up more time in your schedule?”
Diane started out as an administrative assistant at her current company, then applied as a client services coordinator. The good news is she got the job. The bad news is her admin tasks didn’t disappear. What should she do?
Experts say many bosses are clueless about how they come across to employees. Five signs your boss may be one of them:
When a friend becomes the boss, the power shift can bring on strong emotions and conflict. To avert problems—and to save your friendship—keep emotions out of the way and focus on strengthening your new professional relationship:
Is it wrong for the boss to ask an assistant to handle his water bill? Should a boss’s personal tasks be part of an administrative pro’s duties? Our readers weighed in on the topic, revealing a range of opinions on what’s fair to expect of an admin.
After 20 years of being a secretary, writes one administrative professional, she knows how to do the necessary work. That hasn’t kept her current supervisor or her supervisor’s boss—both women—from berating and intimidating her. The admin asks, “How can I learn to stand up for myself in a professional manner?”
“My boss is inundated with business cards,” writes an admin reader. “Some are in Rolodexes, others are loose. But he doesn’t want to weed through and toss old ones. Any ideas on how to organize them?”
Occasionally, your boss may ask you to do something that is against your better judgment. Admins must know how and when to push back on a boss. Scott Eblin, author of “The Next Level” blog, offers these suggestions:
Streamliine email processing by having a single address for your boss and you.

Brown-nosing done right

January 13, 2011 Categorized in: Managing the Boss

Here’s reassuring news to anyone who loathes a sycophant: According to new research out of Northwestern University and the University of Michigan, overt ingratiation can backfire. The research revealed that there is a wrong way and a right way to suck up. So what does work?