My previous article talks on the importance of the secretary to the executive. Realizing this significance, I find it appropriate to list down these tips on how the secretary shall handle the mail and paperwork with efficiency.
1. Opens and Sorts Incoming Mail
The secretary shall read diligently all incoming mail. Mail, such as routinary reports and other documents which do not require decision, shall be immediately endorsed to offices concerned.
Mail received and endorsed shall be accurately recorded by the secretary and signed by the endorsee or his or her receiving clerk. This is to facilitate tracing of documents.
Mail which need the decision or approval by the executive shall be placed under the “IN” basket items.
2. Handles and analyzes “IN” basket items
Items that could not be handled with confidence could be carefully organized, prioritized, and brought to the executive with a recommendation or a note or a previous communication on the issue which serves as a guide to the executive on the action to be taken on the item.
This requires that the secretary shall keep himself or herself abreast of the happenings in the office. He or she shall keep a journal of the daily office activities, which he or she or the executive could glance from time to time.
3. Handles routine inquiries
The secretary shall equip himself or herself all the basic data in the office which the clients shall initially need. For example, he or she shall have ready data on the prices of products and services, number and location of branches, the contact information for each branch and other basic data.
He or she shall act with courtesy and politeness in dealing with clients and employees.
4. Reviews communications, reports and other documents which require signature of the executive
The secretary shall make a review and preliminary correction of the communications before bringing them to the executive. He or she shall check the grammatical errors and whether the subject and body of the letter or memorandum jibe with each other.
So it is important that the secretary shall be focused on his or her job and has a good command of the English language. There are many English books which the secretary may use for his or her review of the vocabulary and grammar. One good book to use as reference is English for Business by Stewart, Lanham and Zimmer.
He or she shall meticulously review reports and other documents before bringing them to the executive for signature or approval. He or she shall see to it that all other signatures are complete and in order.
5. Serves as confidential journalist and caretaker of most critical secrets in the corporate body
This one is added by my good friend and former classmate, Steve Hermosisima. Steve is a Licensed TourGuide/Conductor atOldTown TrolleyTours in the USA.
It is necessary that the secretary is discreet, cautious, trustworthy and loyal to the company.
If these tips are followed, the busy executive shall be relieved of the paperwork and effectively perform his or her planning and decision-making function.
If you have any other tips to include in this list, I shall be very glad if you write them down by leaving your comments below this article.