Many people that I’ve met that have worked any length of time in an office say how funny and accurate they found the show ‘The Office’. It was an unexpected British hit show that was re-made (as is often the case now) in the USA. I too liked watching ‘The Office’ but not because I thought it was realistic. Indeed watching the sit-com reinforced a few things in my mind about how not to be an office manager.
One of my employees recently returned from learning to dive on Tao Island in Thailand. He told us he stayed on a beach called Taa Sak. It sounded like a very peaceful and quiet beach in an idyllic setting of coconut palms and mountain scenery. He had a deep suntan and a very bored looked on his face.
Rather than dismiss his holiday with just a few words of polite discourse, I encouraged my employee to tell us in the office about his holiday. I also asked him to tell us some details about how much it cost. This was politic on my part. I find discussing the bottom line helps to focus the minds of my employees. At first many of the people in the office were transported by the stories of spotting whale sharks and trigger fish diving; by the rich coconut laced food and by the all night parties on Sairee Beach; but, when they discovered how much money they needed to go to Thailand and do these things they soon started to value their jobs again I’m sure.
It is always good to be friendly as an office manager. It is essential to have a basic understanding of human psychology to make sure everyone is happy and doing their job to the best of their ability rather than dreaming of soaking up the sun on Taa Sak in Koh Tao.