Old-fashioned as it may seem, employers today are anxious to find, keep and promote people who offer more than hard skills. Personal andinterpersonal skills are a bonus for the employer—and for you.

That premise led the U.S. Department of Labor to launch an online, downloadable program with a provocative title: Soft Skills to Pay the Bills—Mastering Soft Skills for Workplace Success.


In her 11-year career as an office manager, Debra Irene shared the mission and core values of her employer, a vibrant and growing U.S. energy company. She had reason to feel secure in her job—until the company sold.

Her boss, the founder, would be stepping down. Suddenly, he would be gone and, she worried, her job might be gone, too. What she didn’t realize was that her work history and a valued character trait would open a door and lead to a welcome new opportunity.


Visit the St. Louis campus of Boeing and you’ll soon discover that Antoinette Smith, CAP-OM, not only knows every inch of the campus, but that most everyone knows, and also respect, her. Through her 38-plus years of employment at Boeing, Smith has gained a reputation for being a leader, a mentor and an innovator, not just for her executives, but also for the administrative staff.

Courtney Clark's picture

Three Common Playground Behaviors to Increase Professional Resiliency

The playground seems like a place for play - an unlikely place to take our professional cues. It turns out, however, that some of the most common childhood habits can actually work as resiliency-building tools.
Children often have naturally resilient tendencies – think about a toddler learning to walk and hitting the ground over and over, never giving up. Three childhood habits we can all attempt to adapt are:

1. Climb High, Lay Low
Benefit: Find new perspective and new solutions

Quitting a job is always an option, but it may not be the best option. First, get the facts.

The Right Financial Plan

Quitting a job is always an option, but it may not be the best option. First, get the facts. Review your employee handbook and/or schedule a confidential appointment with human resource professionals to get details on employment benefits, insurance, and compensation for unused vacation days. Ask about keeping, cashing or rolling over your 401(k) or other pension plan. And be sure to anticipate the date of your last paycheck.

The Right Conversation

Though unemployment is high people are still quitting their jobs. Others are being fired. While you might entertain a fantasy about making an exit that is dramatic—thinking that they’ll be sorry when you’re gone—let’s be clear. They probably won’t be. When you leave a job where you’ve played a vital role, it seems impossible to believe that the show will go on without you. Yet, it will.

About the time you think you’ve seen and heard everything, think again. These days, something new—something unexpected, bold or just plain crazy—can go viral and get worldwide attention with millions and millions of hits on YouTube.

As an example, we give you Joey.

Joey is the guy who hired a 19-piece brass band to blast away in the background while a videographer filmed him quitting his job. A disgruntled boss was left standing in a corridor as Joey paraded out the door while the band played on.


As an administrative professional, you are the gatekeeper, travel coordinator, expense tracker, concierge, scheduler, event manager and overall go-to person for everything. Every day is different and everyone knows you are the one who has all the answers.

Here are three ways LinkedIn can help you keep your reputation solid as a miracle worker:

Stacy Leitner's picture

Tips for EFAM 2014

Over the years, I have traveled throughout North America attending IAAP's annual EFAM conferences. It has been a remarkable way to network with other professionals and help develop my career. I am excited to attend EFAM 2014 in Milwaukee, Wis. July 26-30.

Here are a few tips to help you prepare for EFAM this year:

Upon Arrival in Milwaukee

Rhonda Scharf's picture

Assert Yourself at EFAM 2014

According to the New York Times, 40 to 75 percent of people suffer from social anxiety. In fact, it’s the number one social phobia. Do you suffer from social anxiety? Is coming to EFAM causing you worry because you won’t know anyone (or won’t know very many people)? We may be mature adults, but social situations can feel just like high school, looking at the “cool kids” from the outside.