The position of an office manager is a big one. The job involves overseeing many mission-critical tasks, and many employees depend upon your ability to manage wisely. As an office manager, it sounds as if you’ll bear a heavy load of responsibilities, and you will. However, there isn’t a need for you to become overwhelmed in your role. You can quickly become someone that everyone in the office responds to and respects.
Two things all great office managers do to help businesses thrive is to ensure their own flexibility and improvisation skills.
Recall that there isn’t any such thing as a “typical day on the job” for office managers. At any given moment, you might be giving a presentation to your organization’s CEO and in the next moment, helping someone else how to access files on their laptop. Improvisation and the ability to adapt are your key allies as you move forward in your career.
With that said, it’s still vital to get a grasp on other office manager skills and abilities you’ll commonly use. That’s why we’ve put together the following office manager skills list.
Every office manager is tasked with completing administrative tasks. Many of these include such things as supervising current employees, training new ones, conducting performance reviews, and hiring and firing people. Other administrative tasks you’ll likely have to perform include maintaining personnel records and other paperwork, working general business operations, and approving requisitions.
For example, you’ll need to be able to:
- Engage in information management
- Know how to schedule an employee’s shifts
- Resolve conflicts
- Delegate tasks
- Be analytical
To be a great office manager, you’ll also need to have the ability to think critically and analytically. It’ll be a constant quest to learn more, think harder, and do your job more efficiently. After all, it’s within your power to potentially save your employer a lot of money and aggravations.
Asking yourself whether things make logical sense when it comes to procedures, processes, and practices is an excellent habit because you’ll often identify areas for improvement, which your boss will appreciate. If you have great analytical skills, you should never forget to mention them in your resume. List out things like:
- Deductive reasoning
- Inductive reasoning
- Attention to detail; and
Remember, however, that if you list these attributes and you’re hired because of them, you may find yourself swiftly shown the door if you don’t demonstrate them on an ongoing basis. Your boss is going to look at you and not other employees at the end of the day. Passing the buck is not an option.
The good news is that the office will seem to run itself when you do your job correctly. With that in mind, remember that some employees can’t do their jobs well unless you do yours.
As with many roles within an organization, communication should be one of your top priorities. Not only will employees need that connection with you, but you’re also one of the first people that visitors to the office will likely see. That’s especially true if the professionals in your office are out. In that case, you may be required to act as a receptionist while still performing your other necessary duties.
Sometimes, you’ll be the primary contact between offices within the same company. Because of these “extra roles,” you’ll be called upon to have skills in:
- Active listening
- Phone etiquette
- Written communication; and
- Oral communication
Now, you don’t need a skillset that could get you hired by Anonymous here, but you do need the ability to handle spreadsheets, data entry, and general IT tasks in a competent manner.
As an office manager, of course, you’ll need leadership skills. You’ll likely be supervising one or more office assistants, and understanding team dynamics is vital. Setting the example for everyone else is part of being a good leader. Another area where you’ll have the opportunity to show leadership skills is helping office workers to self-start and in fostering communication between all members of the team.
Leadership often requires:
- Interpersonal skills
Leadership in the office manager role also requires a person who can coordinate all their duties while refusing to see their team members as cogs in a wheel. Maintaining and celebrating the human factor is also a must. If you can efficiently and kindly oversee the functionality of the office space, you’re well on the way to being an office manager everyone loves.
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