Insights from a “Rock Star”: A Conversation with Joan Burge

 

OSU Administrative Professionals Hosted Joan Burge

 

Ohio State University Administrative Professionals Group hosted Joan Burge April 23, 2018, in an informal session called Insights From a Rock Star: A Conversation with Joan Burge. Many of the professionals attending had questions about Joan and her accomplishments, however, there were several questions during the event that were asked that are often asked by our own readers.

We thought we’d share some of those questions that were posed to Joan.

 

How does one enhance his/her value in a partnership with an executive who has challenges delegating work?

My number one is don’t ask for permission. Just jump in and engage in the change and do it. As far as the value the second place you can add value is by looking within your own area of the work. Identify the areas in which you excel and leverage them. If you have a good leader, they should be observing your talents and sending work your way that play to your talents.

 

 

What are a few key strategies for “managing up” when one’s new manager is resistant to change?

Number one, focus on selling the benefits of the change to your executive. Number two is to ask your executive to try this new process or idea that you are recommending for at least 21 days. The reason for that is because it usually takes us 21 days to feel semi-comfortable with something new. After 21 days, you can ask your executive their thoughts on the new process. Is there anything that should be changed or tweaked?

 

What challenges do administrative professionals face today compared to ten years ago?

There is a huge lack of information. Years ago, before all the technology, everything had to cross an assistant’s desk. Therefore, we saw everything, we had to read everything, and we had access to information. Today, information is out in space or in the cloud and assistants don’t have access. That makes their job more difficult. So, my advice for an assistant is you have to ask questions, you have to pull information out of your executive, and you have to get your nose in their business in what they’re doing so you can do your job better and be more proactive.

 

 

Of all the skills and talents that an Administrative Professional must-have in today’s world, which are the most critical and why?

The most critical skill is resiliency today. You absolutely have to be resilient with all the changes that are taking place. You have to be adaptable, agile, and go with the flow. You also have to be resilient to whatever your executive dishes out to you. Executives need it done now and they need it quick. They are not always going to cushion the words they use or worry about how they say it. They are just going to tell you what they need. So you’ve got to be resilient, you can’t take it personally. You can’t get offended because your executive is not wording their request exactly as you want.

 

What piece of advice did you not receive that you wish you had?

It’s not personal. Business is just business, work is just work. The decisions your executives and managers make are just decisions they just make. It’s not personal! It doesn’t have to do with you personally even though it affects you personally. It’s just business. You’ve got to toughen up.

 

 

Joan Burge has been speaking to small and large groups for over 25 years. Her passion and drive for the administrative field, the women, and men that are involved in it continues to fuel her desire to improve the overall standard of the administrative and executive assistants around the world. With creative teaching techniques, powerful lessons, and high-impact training Joan and Office Dynamics continue to lead and set the standard for all administrative training.

 

Joan is available to speak at your events. Please call 800.STAR.139 to get more information.

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