Improve one’s softs skills when one is Office Manager
One speaks more and more about soft skills nowadays and it’s not just a trendy expression. This term points out human skills, behavioral knowledge: basically, your capacity to interact with other individuals of the human kind. These aptitudes are clearly a form of intelligence (yes, yes), and are sought-after in the professional sector, mainly when one is an Office Manager. During a hiring process, a strong listening capacity can make all the difference, between two similar CVs, which is why it’s important to take an interest.
Respect, self-confidence, time management, non-verbal communication…the list of soft skills is long. Besides from being aware of their importance, it’s key to work on oneself, in order to develop these famous soft skills. A simple article won’t be enough to treat the entire subject, this is why we’ve prepared out a list of key soft skills, which are important to work on, as an Office Manager.
Office Managers communicate with everyone in the company, but also outside. They are closely related to the boss and interact with collaborators, on all sides. Often conversations of Office Managers are targeted to solving issues (Office Managers are problem solvers). During tough situations at times, Office Managers need a lot of self-confidence, in order to get a grip on several situations and take action strongly and with conviction.
To improve self-confidence, it’s important to change one’s mindset. Focus more on what you can learn and improve, rather than all the troublesome but trivial things, on which you have no power on whatsoever, to take action. Focus on all the learning opportunities and the various challenges around you.
Also, avoid comparing yourself to others, thinking that they’re better than you (moreover, it’s often far from being the case, some people are very good at play-acting…) These comparisons can be very negative and are completely counterproductive.
Once again, an Office Manager exchanges with several people in various situations. It’s important to properly handle these exchanges, in order to develop good relations.
Body language, does that ring a bell? Be attentive to yours and the one of others. Avoid fidgeting and sit straight, this shall already be a good start.
Pay attention to everyone (and not just your boss). Make your interlocutors feel important and that they deserve your respect. Even an intern.
When someone expresses a dubious or even a lousy idea, take the time to consider this from all the angles, before giving a negative feedback. Show that you’re open minded.
When you speak to a group, make sure you make good eye contact with everyone (not at the same time, to avoid squinting).
Try to practice speaking in public as much as possible.
A very important skill, when one knows the number of problems you have to handle! Being curious helps you be innovative and provide new solutions to the company. This is how you’ll become a key element of your company.
Be in touch with current events of the sector of your activity! Consult blogs, studies, watch videos, attend conferences…Exchange with other Office Managers, in order to understand their way of working, which may be different from yours.
Make it a habit to take a fresh look at your work, as if you were completely new to this. You’ll be surprised to see how easily you’ll be able to find new solutions to the problems where you were stuck for weeks.
Ask questions: to your boss, your collaborators…without harassing them too much. Try to find out what interests them, what is on their mind, and what are their perspectives…
Last but not least, give yourself new challenges, regularly!
To understand your collaborators and pamper them, it’s important to have good listening skills. Not being able to listen, might make you miss out on key information and not be able to communicate properly.
Focus on what one tells you, rather than think what you’re going to answer (yes, we all do this, but it’s a bad habit).
Stop interrupting your interlocutors! It’s unbearable, really! Wait for them to have finished, before speaking.
When you give your opinion on a question, try to put yourself in the shoes of your interlocutors, to understand their viewpoint.
Make eye contact with people.
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