We are so excited to kick off our blog series, “Fly Through a Day” with Melissa Nourigat. Melissa, with the help of Deirdre Jenkins, has created one of the largest social network groups for administrative professionals, Administrative Assistant Office Professionals (AAOP). AAOP should be your go-to when you want to know what other admins are reading, need inspiration, or need help. Nearly 200,000 of your peers are just a message away and ready to help! Today, we want to celebrate her efforts and give all our readers a quick peek into her day to day life. Join us and fly through a day with Melissa!
1. What does an average day look like?
An average day starts with Coffee! Lots of it. I’ll skip my morning home prep and get to the good stuff. An average day begins with hanging up my coat, turning on my computer, setting up my daily journal page and then checking phone messages.
Once these things are in order, I check the previous day’s tasks or notes and add them to today’s tasks and check email. I sort by managers, priority, and cancelled appointments. I always handle priorities immediately. Priorities include issues like delayed flights, late arrival notices, or other emergencies travelers may have. I then move to setting up and rescheduling appointments. If all is on schedule and no one is traveling, there are meetings, lots of meeting. Before I can even start my own prep work, I coordinate conference calls, conference rooms, catering, and all aspects of logistics that go into these meetings. I may be asked to set up a SharePoint site for the meeting or PowerPoint slide presentation.
After meeting coordination is handled and taken care of, I’m running expense reports, new hire forecast, and sitting in admin meetings to learn or collaborate on team projects. And this is all before noon!
The rest of the day is spent planning ahead. Are we out of stock, what purchasing tasks need to be performed, is my team hosting off sites? Yes, always a busy and full day, with never a dull moment. The heavy tasks consume the bulk of work, but the paperwork and other soft skill items also require my full attention.
In addition to the bulk of my work I can be found volunteering for many corporate events.
Wow, it really sounds like you have a plate that is so full it’s hard to believe it doesn’t topple over!
2. What is the best part of your job?
The best part of my job is leaving at the end of a day with a feeling of accomplishment, a job well done, and happy customers.
I totally agree. There is no better feeling than knowing you accomplished everything you wanted to accomplish. And there is no worse feeling than going home thinking about everything you didn’t get done.
3. What do you do to stay motivated?
I stay motivated through a mix of planning ahead and exceeding expectations. I love anticipating work and seeing ahead of the curve. When you plan well, you have time and energy for higher level responsibilities. Each time I take on those new responsibilities and exceed expectations, I am able to advance my career. Knowing that everything I do is for that larger goal helps motivate me every day.
What an inspiration! Staying motivated is definitely one of the hardest parts of my day and deriving your motivation from within is something I aspire to do.
4. If you could learn how to do anything, what would it be?
I would love to learn how to best utilize excel.
Excel is such a huge time saver and helps me organize every aspect of my life. Even after using it for years, I still feel like there is so much to learn.
5. What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
The best advice I’ve ever received is make sure I’m on the platform when the train arrives and get on the train before it leaves. Oh, and a cruise director never leaves her purse behind 🙂
6. What sites do you use to learn about the latest technology?
I use a mix of Linkedin and word of mouth. As the owner of the AAOP LinkedIn group, I have an advantage, in that, businesses or people approach me wishing to share their latest technologies with others. This is probably one of my favorite aspects about LinkedIn. It really focuses and emphasizes sharing work related topics and I have the opportunity to learn about new technologies and share the ones I believe in and am truly passionate about. TRAVO was one of those technologies because I saw the value it would add to Administrative Assistants and travel planners everywhere.
We are so SO thankful for your support, Melissa. It has really meant so much to everyone here in the office and we hope that we can continue to provide value to your community!
7. What is your biggest pain point when planning business trips?
My biggest pain point, before TRAVO, was having to copy and paste all the trip information into the calendar and not having a map imbedded. I had to pull up multiple pages, windows, and websites to put myself in my traveler’s shoes and see what their itinerary would look like. I’m a visual person and so are my teams, so giving them everything they need can be time consuming doing it piecemeal. Now with TRAVO, I can see everything in one place and provide my travelers a step by step itinerary that they can easily follow. Best of all, I no longer have to spend hours formatting each person’s itinerary!
Thanks so much for the feedback! Honestly, the product is only where it is today because of our incredible users letting us know what they would like to see out of a travel planning tool.
8. What is your favorite place in the world?
My favorite place, of course, is home! After home, however, I don’t have an exact specific favorite place. I love traveling and discovering new places. For my next vacation, I would love to visit anywhere warm with sunny beaches and plenty of adult beverages. I recently traveled to Hawaii and had an amazing time. I would also love to visit Tahiti or the Bahamas. I would also love to go back to Europe. As a child I was fortunate to have lived in other countries and some of my fondest memories are from the time we spent 2 and a half years site-seeing Germany. I would visit France first if I had the opportunity because my mom’s family is originally from there.
You should come visit us here in Los Angeles! Always sunny, beautiful beaches, and I’m sure tropical adult beverages could be provided 🙂
Have an admin you want to know more about? Tag them below and we’ll be sure to reach out to them!