Being a great office manager takes a diverse skill set. Here, we discuss the top five qualities to look for when hiring office managers.
Your office manager may be the first person someone meets when they enter your office. Whether it’s a potential investor, new hire, or returning customer, the office manager’s demeanor will help create their first impression of your organization.
Looking at excellent office managers, you will notice they often have a naturally positive attitude and friendly communication style. Being in a position where they interact with so many employees, customers, and stakeholders, having an optimistic outlook is a critical skill as the company will look to them to keep morale high and be a positive influence in the office.
2. Initiative and the Anticipation of Needs
Office managers need to be able to react well to challenges and anticipate needs. In their reactive role, office managers will be faced with endless requests from employees across the organization. They will need to possess the initiative to prioritize requests and find ways to streamline their own workflow. To maximize their effectiveness, they should also be able to anticipate certain needs and re-occurring requests.
3. Active Interest in the Company’s Well-Being
A strong office manager will strive to move forward the overall success of the organization. This active interest in the company’s well-being will allow them to address each task and request in the context of the functioning of the entire office. It will also allow them to identify and improve areas of office life that will promote the company’s future success.
4. Excellent Communication Skills
Office managers don’t often communicate with clients, and as such, the importance of communication skills in this role is often overlooked. However, it’s important for an office manager to be an effective communicator.
Often, the office manager oversees the implementation of company-wide policies. They must carefully and clearly communicate the reasoning behind the changes and successfully encourage their coworkers to buy into these new policies. They will often be the first point of contact for questions about company policies, changes, and new directions. As you can see, communication skills are a must.
5. The Ability to Be Accessible and Friendly
An office manager needs to be accessible both in terms of availability and in terms of having a warm, approachable personality. Employees should feel as though they can always talk to their office manager about requests and questions.
Being approachable and easily accessible will also help new office managers settle into their new roles and quickly foster important relationships with their new team. If employees feel they have a personal and professional relationship with their office manager, they will feel as though they have a voice in the organization and are valued by someone who can affect organizational change.
5. Ability to adapt & learn
The covid-19 pandemic has led to several changes in workplaces where employees needed to pivot and quickly adapt to the new way of remote or hybrid work. In such circumstances, the role of an office manager assumes even greater responsibility and an active role. Your office manager must be adept at quickly learning new technology and be able to smoothly manage the needs of and help employees remotely.
The office manager is a specialized management position that requires being in touch with all elements of a company. A good office manager is often a sign of a successful and productive office environment, and having that kind of impact takes a certain set of skills. Look for a candidate with these traits to find an office manager who can really make an impact.