One of the most important things you can do as an administrative professional is learn how to manage your time. Time management is critical in this line of work, because you inevitably have a range of specific tasks you need to accomplish each day. It’s also common for the executives you work for to need additional work completed on an ad hoc basis. Because you typically have to handle a large and diverse work load, it’s important that you know how to organize your work day.
Workplace efficiency starts with you, so your time-management process is important. In a typical office administrative staff members are responsible for ensuring that things run smoothly. You need to be available to answer the phone, know when to schedule appointments, and get your daily tasks completed. When you arrive at work, take time to plan your day. Start by making a list of all of the tasks you have to complete throughout the day, and then highlight the most important tasks. Because you may have other projects thrown your way throughout the day, it’s important to schedule some time for interruptions. Part of mastering time management is learning how to schedule your tasks in an efficient order. If your boss has assigned you to work on a project that you don’t enjoy, tackle that project first. This way, you don’t waste time throughout the day because you’re dreading making the slides for your boss’s next big presentation or replying to your boss’s emails. Not only does getting the worst task out of the way first thing in the morning help you stay on track, you’ll be able to look forward to tackling the projects that you do enjoy.
If you want your time management plan to work, it’s also important that you don’t overcommit yourself. As an administrative professional, this can be difficult—especially if you provide support to more than one person. Your job is to provide support to others, so you may find it difficult to say no when someone asks you to help with a project. However, it’s important to remember that it’s okay to let people know that you already have all the commitments you can handle. When you overcommit your work time, you aren’t doing anyone any favors. Not only will you be overwhelmed, but you’ll have to rush through your tasks, which may cause you to make mistakes.
Workplace efficiency is something that most office personnel strive to master. Your role as an administrative professional is to create an effective plan for time management that you can stick to. If you have a successful time management plan, you’ll find that it’s easier to get all of your work completed on time. Nancy Anderson is the communities and article Editor for Beyond.com. Nancy has 10 years’ experience in the online job search business with Beyond. Nancy’s team produces dozens of articles every month for top internet sites. Follow Nancy and the Beyond team on https://twitter.com/BeyondJobs.