Being the office manager can mean you have a lot of responsibility. Depending on the size of the office, you may be responsible for a large team or even a series of teams handling different aspects of the business. So, if you are looking to sharpen your skills with Office Management Training Courses in London or are looking to enhance your abilities, what should you concentrate on to become the perfect office manager?
The key skill of the most successful office managers is that of communication. Whether you run a small team, a large team or a series of teams, nothing will work well without clear communication. Being an effective communicator is crucial for many roles and even more so when you are in a management position. You need to be the leader in meetings, step in for higher management to represent their position to your team and even represent your company at public functions.
There are lots of ways to work on communication skills but the most important is to practices and get feedback. Ask your team if they understood what you have said and how you have laid out a meeting or presentation. Get them to give you feedback on any areas they found unclear or if there were any crossed wires.
Closely linked with communication skills are those of people management. This is a very different arena to project management or even task management – it is about dealing with people and finding ways to get the best from them. This means you need two key traits: patience and understanding. When a member of staff raising a problem, you need the patience to list to their concern and to understand what is wrong before you can put measures in place to address the concern.
A good trick to help with this is to learn about personality types. Systems such as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator can be a useful tool to get insight into people and therefore manage them better. This also applies to yourself – by better understanding your own psychological preferences, you can find ways to make yourself better at things.
As an office manager, you need to be innovative and find new solutions to problems. This is a role where people will look to you for solutions and while sometimes tried and tested approaches work well, there are other times when you need something more. Don’t confuse this with creativity – people think you need to be creative to be innovative and this isn’t the case.
Sometimes, being innovative is more about compiling the ideas provided to you and finding new ways to solve problems with them. Don’t be afraid to use the most innovative thinking people in your team to brainstorm and learn to put those ideas into a useful solution. And don’t forget to credit everyone involved when you do this!
As the office manager, you need a comprehensive understanding of how the company you are managing works. This means taking an interest in all levels of the business, far beyond your role. You need to see where your team and your office fit into the grand scheme of the company if it is a big, multi-location business. And even for smaller, single office companies, there is still the need to understand everything that goes on.
To build on this skill, don’t be afraid to get involved with different areas of the business. Ask if you can attend other department meetings sometimes to get the full picture and take notice of all communications, not just the ones that apply to your area of work. By being business savvy, you can improve your skills in your role and make yourself available for other roles in the future.