LIS Admin Team Provides Advice for Administrative Day

Administrative Day is a national holiday that recognizes the men and women working diligently behind the scenes in a clerical or support role, ensuring that the office runs smoothly and efficiently. L.I. Smith & Associates (LIS) has a diverse administration team, each of them playing a valuable role within the business. Without them, LIS would not be the company it is today.  

To showcase the importance of their positions within the company, we asked each team member to describe their role and provide a piece of advice that may be beneficial for those interested in perusing an administrative career in the future.  

Amanda Perry, Billing Specialist: Can you share a bit about your role within the administrative team and what it entails daily?

My role includes invoicing and accounts receivable, expense management, budget management, and accounts payable. I generate and send invoices to clients, while processing and tracking clients’ payments. I manage the company’s expenses by verifying receipts and ensuring compliance with company expense policies. I monitor the organization’s budget by tracking expenses for the different departments and ensuring adherence to budgetary constraints. I am also responsible for accounts payable, which includes managing vendor invoices, processing payments, a maintaining accurate records of outgoing payments. By compiling financial data, preparing reports, and providing analysis, I provide the financial data to help the administration team make important decisions.

Angela Dortch, Project Administrator- Survey: Can you describe a particularly challenging situation you’ve encountered in your role and how you handled it?

No matter where a person is employed, challenging situations arise. It is simply inevitable. The situation might involve the work environment, a co-worker, a client, a lack of supplies, etc. The way in which a person handles a challenging or stressful situation is key. It is a reflection of the individual as well as the company as a whole. We are not always going to address a situation in the best way possible all the time. However, whether the situation involves a person or not, I try to maintain composure and professionalism.

Ashley Horn, Vice President of Marketing and Communications: How do you maintain a positive attitude and morale, especially during busy or stressful periods?

No matter where you work, things will get busy and stressful from time to time. In order to maintain a positive attitude, I like to step away from the situation at hand and take a moment to myself. If possible, I like to take a walk around the square to get some fresh air. This allows me to reflect on the situation and make a plan to move forward.  

Working in marketing and communications, specifically, it is our responsibility to present a positive face, even during difficult times. When stressful situations arise, it is important to keep in mind that we are representatives of LIS, and as such, we play a major role in how the public perceives the company.  

Caleb Orr, Project Administrator- Construction: Can you share a memorable moment or experience from your time working in administration?

Being able to be a part of conversations and planning that will have an impact across our state and improve transportation for so many people has been the most memorable and rewarding part of what I do.

Carolyn Dotson, Human Resources Officer: What are some qualities or skills you believe are essential for success in administrative roles? 

Organization is one of the most important skills for an administrative role. Being organized helps minimize frantic searches for items, helps prioritize tasks, and maintains confidential information. This is essential in every department of a company. Another required skill is communication. While it is important to convey information so that others understand it, it is equally important to learn to listen so that you can process the information and respond appropriately to the situation. If you are organized and communicate effectively you can easily incorporate other skills and qualities that contribute to your success not only at work but in your personal life.

Chris Mills, Project Administrator- Engineering: What strategies or tools do you find most helpful in staying organized and efficient?  

There are many helpful strategies and tools to help us stay organized and work efficiently. Personally, I create daily ‘to-do’ lists to prioritize tasks and keep track of what I have and have not completed. Utilizing today’s software also helps me stay organized, whether it is simply using the calendar in my email or using more sophisticated time management apps. I find that having multiple methods to time and track tasks helps me stay focused and up to date on items I need to complete. I also believe that regularly reviewing your progress and reflecting on what is working well and what is not is a great method to incorporate into your daily functions.

Madison Bickerstaff, Communications Specialist: What advice would you give to someone considering a career in administrative work?  

Seek out opportunities to job shadow each specific role you’re interested in! Every administrative role looks different and even though every company may have a “Marketing Department”, that department will look different at each company. For example, some Marketing Departments may be more consumer focused, while others are mission focused. The responsibility of the role truly depends on the company. Other than job shadowing at various companies, take a quick look at current job descriptions for open administrative positions and become familiar with the tasks that you see correlate among different positions.

MJ Hooper, Marketing and Communications Intern: How do you handle unexpected challenges or changes in workload?

When I am faced with an unexpected challenge or change in workload, I make sure to prioritize my tasks first. If there are multiple deadlines that I need to meet in a short time, I always get those done quickly and efficiently to ensure those deadlines are met. I also make sure to reach out to other people on the administrative team if I need a helping hand with tasks because it is better to ask for help rather than make your work a mess!

Steve Isbell, Technology Administrator: In what ways do you feel your role contributes to the overall success of the organization?

My role in Information Technology (IT) plays a crucial role in the success of LIS in various ways. For example, IT systems can facilitate the automation of tasks, streamline our processes, increase productivity, and improve efficiency. Additionally, I am also able to enhance LIS’ communication with tools such as email, video conferencing, and collaboration platforms, which further enables seamless communication among our employees, teams, customers, and partners and fosters teamwork and innovation. By leveraging IT effectively, it can give us a competitive advantage by implementing innovative technologies, allowing us to quickly adapt to changes, and delivering our products and services more efficiently than our competitors.

Tami Winston, Receptionist: What do you enjoy most about being part of the administrative team?

My role is to create a positive first impression, provide customer service, offer administrative support, and enhance the overall efficiency of our team, and it keeps me on my toes. Being part of the admin team is rewarding because of the opportunities for collaboration, problem-solving, and my contribution to the success of LIS.

Terri Hendrix, Project Administrator-Survey: How do you prioritize tasks when faced with multiple deadlines or competing demands?

One of the most valuable tools for me is a prioritized task list. Given the numerous projects I manage on a daily basis, each with distinct priorities and deadlines, I find it essential to reconstruct my list every morning to reflect the tasks that take precedence for the day. As I progress through this list, I systematically mark off completed tasks, providing a visual representation of the progress made and instilling a sense of achievement. Any incomplete tasks are promptly reassessed and reprioritized, and clients are promptly apprised of their project statuses. Keeping clients informed serves to underscore their significance and assures them of our unwavering commitment to completing their projects diligently.