The last year has led to profound changes in most workplaces – even when operations continued, you may have seen fewer customers face-to-face, you may have moved more customer service activities online or you may be interacting with customers differently in the front office. Your front desk operations, supply purchasing, inventory management, mail handing and office workflows may have changed in profound ways. And likely, your administrative professional has been on the front lines of all this change.
Administrative Professional’s Day is a good time to check in strategically with your administrative staff to reflect on all the changes that have occurred, and to talk strategically about a “new normal” ahead. Here are some questions to shape the discussion.
Ask, from the administrative staff perspective….
- What were the most significant changes over the last year?
- What are you most proud of this past year?
- What changes are working well that we want to keep?
- What previous practices do you hope to return to over time?
- What will need to be considered in planning for a “new normal”?
- What other future changes would benefit the organization?
- What do you most need as we move ahead?
While these are good questions to ask anytime, they may be particularly useful as the front office team reflects upon and processes the last year, and considers next steps ahead. Beyond the questions themselves, the most important aspect of the discussion is taking time to pause and listen. Being heard is often the greatest gift one can receive – and you will receive helpful feedback in the process.
Often, your Administrative Professionals are at the front desk and on the front lines, making them best positioned to see a future that you may not have considered yet. Give them the space to share their expertise, while celebrating their unique contributions over the last year.