Dear Aunty B,
I’m a partner in a medium-sized law firm. We have a large number of existing and new clients, and as such we generate a huge amount of paperwork. Filing is a very important task for our secretaries, but it never seems to be up to date.
How can I inspire them to make sure the filing gets done? I’ve considered hiring an office junior to take care of it, but I don’t want to put all of that gruelling work onto just one person.
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It is a noble idea, but inspiring people to file is unlikely to happen! There is no more tedious office task, and I don’t blame the secretaries for letting it slide a little given the influx of more work.
However, you are right – no law firm, or other business, can operate without the paperwork filed efficiently.
You’ll have to make clear the importance of the task to your team, but also if you can afford it, hiring a part-time junior or two to assist would be ideal. It isn’t an exciting job, but the chance for a young person to get inside a thriving businesses, help out, watch and learn, could be very appealing and good for their career development.
Also think about how you can clear away the paperwork and get into the cloud. Surely there are ways to have things filed electronically as opposed to mountains of files? Charge one of the team with chance to take the lead here and minimise the clutter.
Sounds like business is going well, with everyone taking on more work. Remember, good personal assistants and secretaries are priceless, so be sure to show appreciation of their building workload so they don’t get resentful.