Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Answering Reader Mail: How Long is it Fair to be a Temp for a Job?

“I love your blog and really appreciate your insights and advice.  I had a question for you and wondered what your opinion would be.

I am a dynamic, successful EA with 2 long term business relationships spanning 26 years.  I recently found myself out of work and started my search.  After only 2 weeks, I found a great company through a staffing agency and the position was full time working for a wonderful CEO.  I did very well on my interviews and it's down to me and one other EA who already has a full time job.  

The staffing agent asked if I was open to temp to perm, even though the position was for a full time EA, he feels the CEO may need time to see if it is a good fit.  It feels like a bait and switch and there are no guarantees.

What would you do?  I'm tempted to say yes because I want to be open and I can really show them what I can do, but part of me is slightly insulted, especially with my impeccable background.  I have no idea how long "temp" is considered before they would offer the permanent position. How long do you think is fair? One month?

Friday, December 6, 2013

Being Proactive and Walking the Fine Line

As executive assistants we are expected to be helpful, accommodating, and abiding, while also being forward-thinking, 10 steps ahead, and sensitive to others' needs, emotions, and whims.  For a long time, I struggled with the fine line of being supportive, yet proactive, while making sure things would be executed in the best way possible - that someone’s method, choice, decision, or line of thinking was effortlessly congruent with the business goal and task at hand for my boss or the company's benefit.  Because being proactive can sometimes be perceived at face value/initially as disagreeing, not trusting someone's judgment, pointing out something could be better, overstepping boundaries, or being a naysayer, it can be a sensitive subject no matter how delicately you communicate.  Your best intentions to save the company money, a headache, and stress can be interpreted in so many ways by different people.  Perhaps a  new perspective, idea, or suggestion would help, though at times, it could very well be what was assigned and how to carry it out had been vetted by the entire senior executive team and this was, oddly enough, the best way to handle something.  With life and work, the greatest question always seems to be, where do you draw the line?