Page 1

for administrative & office professionals

Volume 28 Issue 1

Get promoted and make an impact

Meet a PAFSA member

Brand beyond grooming

PLUS Green Office Week Green Goodwill Campaign

8 ways to manage your manager

Planning your


R23.88 (incl. VAT) Other Countries R37.50



careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


Contents 04 News and Reviews Updating you

08 Key Feature Planning your success

13 Interview

Spotlight on Tersia Pretorius

15 Tips

Powerpoint Animation tips

19 Work Trends More being done with less time

20 Career Feature Get promoted and make an impact

22 Personal Development Brand beyond grooming

25 Coaching Class 26 International Gurus 8 Ways to manage your manager

29 Do it better Excel‘s hidden secret

30 Focus Feature

Green Office Week - The Green Goodwill Campaign

40 Meet a Member Welcoming Grace Ndaba

43 PAFSA News Beyond IYOTSA

44 Last Page Test your wits

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

Contributors D e i r d r e E l p h i c k Moore has an Honours Degree in Psychology and over 10 years international experience in human capital management at Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley. Co-founding The Office Coach in 2009, she now focuses on personal and workplace effectiveness training and development. L






Southern is The

Accessories Guru, a personal brand stylist NOT an Image consultant. His talent lies in unleashing a new found awareness of self, and develop a strong personal brand for each individual .Offerings also include corporate workshops and guest speaking. Contact lanleysouthern@ gmail.com and on www.facebook. comand development. Feroza Sader is the Office Admin Manager of Coffey International Ltd, She was also a finalist in the Office Professional of South Africa. She is a member of PAFSA Academy of Excellence, Career Committee and an avid article contributor.

Michele Thwaits

is Executive Assistant to President and Head Africa Cluster: Novartis. In 2010/2011 she started working under her own umbrella Empowered4Success; received her certification as a Life Coach and completed training as NLP Practitioner. She has been involved in public speaking engagements and facilitation of workshops and seminars throughout South Africa, the African continent and abroad since 2007 and has also been the chairperson for the Executive PA Seminar held by Knowledge Resources for 2010, 2011 and 2012. She was also instrumental in the launching of the first PA of the Year in Mauritius together with Cathy Harris (winner of OPSA 2006) and was invited to represent IYOTSA in Gabon (video on Youtube). Linda Windell is the right hand Executive Assistant of media industry guru and CEO of Primedia Unlimited, Ken Varejes; she has spent the last 7 years with the company and loves the fast pace of the media & advertising environment.


Ed’s memo

Editorial Editor-in-chief

2015: The International Year of light

Ana-Maria Valente anamaria@dictum.co.za

Join us as we adopt this UN theme for the secretarial profession.

Assistant Editor Susan Engelbrecht

After 2014’s International Year of the Secretary and Administrative Assistant (IYOTSA) what better way than to have “light” as the ensuing theme!


Let us keep the spotlight on the secretarial/admin profession and ensure its continued growth in stature.

Ornella Trinco ornella@dictum.co.za Advertising/Marketing

PAFSA, your professional home, will keep the flame alive... and with your passion and commitment the year 2015 will bear good fruit!

011 616 7401 careersuccess@dictum.co.za

What better way to say it than this: “As we let our light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same”. Marianne Williamson

Head: Finance & HR

This issue is rich in building your self-esteem. Enjoy a glorious Autumn Ana-Maria

CareerSuccess has planned to have assistant editors as it goes into the future. In this issue we introduce you to the fist appointed Assistant Editor: Susan Engelbrecht, who is the President of PAFSA’s Academy of Excellence. Get to know Susan: She is an Executive Professional Assistant to the CEO and Chief Actuary of Discovery Health and have been with Discovery Health since 2001. Susan was a finalist in the OPSA Office Professional of the Year 2007, runner-up in the OPSA Office Professional of the Year for 2009/2010 and one of 6 finalists in the PAFSA PA of the Year 2014. She was a proud member of the South African task team assigned to the International Year of the Secretary and Administrative Professional 2014 and was the Chairperson of the Presidents Committee (2012/2013) for PAFSA. Susan has also written various articles for the secretarial profession. She enjoys sharing and expanding her skills and is always keen to develop professionally and personally through professional reading, training and networking. Through websites like LinkedIn, Twitter & Facebook this is now possible on a global scale!


Guida Morais finance@dictum.co.za Subscriptions & Client Liaison subs@dictum.co.za Graphic Design design@dictum.co.za

The Company CareerSuccess is published by Dictum Publishers (Pty) Ltd Gauteng, South Africa Tel: (011) 616 7401 Fax: (011) 616 3244 E-mail: careersuccess@dictum.co.za www.dictum.co.za Opinions expressed in any article do not necessarily reflect on the publishers. All submissions to CareerSuccess are subject to editorial change to suit the style of the magazine. The right of reproduction of any article or other matter published in CareerSuccess is expressly reserved.©

CareerSuccess is the official publication of PAFSA. www.pafsa.co.za

Susan is passionate about the secretarial profession and has been an executive PA for many years.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


news and reviews

Read this before you look for a job portal sites also allow job seekers to apply for a job through the site. Similarly, companies have online forms and questionnaires that candidates can fill out, so they don’t have to open a separate email application. Candidates simply complete the form and attach their CV.

Technology has not only changed how people search, apply and interview for jobs but also recruiting strategies and the way businesses hire staff. We no longer have to manually scan through print classifieds for a job, and trawling numerous online sites isn’t necessary thanks to online career classified sites and job portals. “Modern career portals do the legwork for job seekers as they collect available jobs and notify job seekers in real time of relevant jobs available. They connect the job seekers with the job providers within minutes,” says Angelique Robbertse, Product and Marketing Manager for Job Mail. Job seekers register on a site, capture their experience, preferred industry and area. Candidates can then scroll through the available positions anytime, anywhere via web or mobile. Most job

Another tool that job seekers can employ is social media. Career sites post the latest job offers in real time so it is a good idea to follow them on Twitter. A search in Twitter using keywords such as #jobs, #hiring, #recruiting and #intern combined with your preferred industry will reveal the recruiters and companies that are hiring. It isn’t only job seekers using the internet to their advantage, recruiters are too. They are able to conduct thorough online and social media profile searches of potential candidates to get a sense of who they are. “It is a good idea to clean up your social profile prior to embarking on your job hunting and to connect with the company before your interview. Retweet or share an interesting article they posted or connect with the interviewer on LinkedIn,” says Robbertse. Some of the other tools recruiters are using are LinkedIn and Who’s Who Southern Africa to search for

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

suitable employees. They also make use of online personality assessments to match the candidate’s personality to the culture of the company. “Remember to update your online professional profile to reflect your latest job and networks. The more connections you have the better your chance of being seen by a potential employer,” advises Robbertse. Being invited for an interview has evolved. A first interview isn’t necessarily a face-toface interview in the

traditional sense. Video conferencing applications such as Skype make it possible for recruiters or future employers to get in touch with candidates at a moment’s notice and without having to book a boardroom and have candidates bumping into each other in the reception area. It also saves candidates from incurring travel costs and coming up with excuses such as having a doctor’s appointment only to sneak away to the interview. Candidates can simply video conference from their phone.

Trendy: Re-thinking the workplace Improving the work environment is not a Herculean feat, and many companies are already thinking beyond programs such as smoking cessation to those that address real stressors in the workplace, Professor Jeffrey Pfeffer says. Companies need to get serious about creating a workplace where people feel: • valued •

trusted, and


where they are: •

engaged in their work,

don’t worry about losing their jobs, and

where they can get home in time for family dinner!

“We have lost focus on human well-being. It’s all about costs now. Can we afford this, can we afford that? Does it lead to better or worse financial performance for the company?” Pfeffer says. “We’re talking about human beings and the quality of their lives. To me, that ought to get some attention.” Above is a Stanford Business Insight published in an article: Why Your Workplace Might Be Killing You


How Often do You Sharpen Your Axe?

It is compulsory to display Labour legislation and regulations posters According to legislation, it is compulsory for all employers to display posters which set out a summary of labour legislation and regulations at their respective places of work. New legislation recently came into effect; therefore the content of these posters has been amended. Contact NEASA (annika@ neasa.co.za) regarding

the following compulsory posters: •

Basic Conditions Employment Act


Employment Equity Act

Skills Development Act

Occupational Health and Safety Act

Machinery Regulations

Safety Regulations

How important is a professional headshot for a Personal Assistant? We live in a visual world with a strong social media presence so we are often judged online before we meet people face to face. It is therefore vitally important for us all to make the most of this first impression where an instant perception is formed in seconds, so says Jennifer Corcoran in Secs in the City. Jennifer is a passionate champion of the PA profession so she feels it is vital for us all to have a voice and a presence. The social media headshot has

become the first impression of the 21st century. Whether you are a CEO or a Personal Assistant, you should have a professional headshot to represent you. She firmly believes that a professional headshot should be viewed as an investment in yourself. A solid profile implies that the person is an expert in their chosen field and confident in their chosen personal brand and values.

Steve Brooks in peoplehr. com’s blog reminds us of the famous tale... Every year in Norway, there is an annual competition to see who will be crowned as ‘Woodcutter of the Year’. One year, on a particularly cold day, the two finalists met at the crack of dawn to prepare for a mammoth 6 hour session of cutting down trees with nothing but an axe. Each contestant was given their own area of the forest to work in, well away from the other. And when the judges blew the whistle, they both began. Chop, chop, chop… The sound of axes hitting wood echoed throughout the forest, and each contestant matched the opponent stroke for stroke. But as the first hour approached, the contestant on the east of the forest was surprised to hear a sudden silence from his opponent’s side of the forest. He was puzzled, but he carried on cutting. Every hour, the same thing happened – the contestant on the east side of the forest

would hear silence from his opponent’s side, and temporarily increased his pace to ensure a steady lead. As the day finally drew to a close, both contestants had their trees counted. But to the amazement of the contestant from the east side of the forest, his opponent was declared the winner. Approaching his opponent, he asked “how is this possible? I matched you stroke for stroke, and when you stopped every hour, I chopped twice as hard – it was impossible for you to win. How did you do it? ”The other woodcutter simply smiled, and said “well my friend, I spent 15 minutes of every hour sharpening my axe”. Which Woodcutter are You? Do you throw yourself at your work full force every day, or do you take the time to refresh your brain and ‘sharpen your axe’? It’s so easy to get caught up in the frantic rush to stay ahead, that often we forget the importance of taking a step back from it all. But taking the time to sharpen our axes will help us succeed at a much more effective rate – even if sometimes it feels like it’s the other way around.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


news and reviews

What every PA and boss should know about electronic signatures Before the rise of the technological era, the law in most jurisdictions required signatures to be handwritten and either witnessed, notarised or commissioned. The reason for these requirements was to safeguard the authenticity of the signature and provide appropriate evidence should a legal dispute arise in the future. As technology has advanced and electronic signatures have become more popular, the methods used to sign documentation have evolved and become far more sophisticated. It is now a commonly accepted practice in the workplace to ensure there is the required authenticity when signing and or receiving documentation electronically, and especially so if such documentation has any form of priority status. If particular requirements are not specified for validity, an electronic signature could be as simple as a typed name or a digitalised image of a handwritten signature. Whilst the terms ‘electronic signature’ and ‘digital signature’ may be similar, they may not always be used interchangeably. The term ‘digital signature’ is defined

as “a digital code which is attached to an electronically transmitted document to verify its contents and the sender’s identity”. Digital signatures are encrypted in order to protect its authenticity, whereas an electronic signature is not necessarily encrypted. Interestingly, an advanced electronic signature (unlike an electronic signature) involves the use of a digital signature which is created with a digital certificate. The digital certificate is provided by an accredited third party Authentication Service Provider, who has completed a face-to-face identification process with its subscriber. Expectedly, an advanced electronic signature offers a greater degree of security than a general ‘electronic signature’ and it is for this reason that certain transactions will require accredited software before the electronic signature will be legally enforceable. Electronic signatures may be validly used in many types of transactions and contracts and its use is subject to certain exceptions. For example, agreements for the sale of immovable property and wills may not generally be signed electronically. That said, electronic

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

signatures are a valid and legally enforceable method of signing documentation in many countries, including South Africa. However, certain requirements must be met before an electronic signature will be deemed to be valid. Whilst the legal definitions of electronic, digital and advanced electronic signatures may vary between various legal jurisdictions, including the international conventions, it goes without saying that organisations need to

be up-to-date with these variances and extremely vigilant in order to determine the validity of a person’s so-called ‘authority’ which underpins electronic documentation. Extract of an article by Terrance M. Booysen and reviewed by Niel Maritz (MKM Attorneys: Senior Partner) published by CGF Research Institute. More information available from Terry Booysen (Chief Executive Officer) Tel: 011 476 8264 Cell: 082 373 2249 E-mail: tbooysen@cgf.co.za

The Right Way r to Disagree With You Boss Disagreeing with your boss is awkward, but expressing that divergent viewpoint is important in your professional growth as well as the forward progress of your company. Social scientist Joseph Grenny shares with Harvard Business Review how to express disagreement with your superior without coming across as a jackass: Discuss your intent before you go into the content of your differing viewpoint. When and if your boss starts getting defensive, it may be that (s)he believes your disagreeing with her/him is a threat to their authority or to their objectives. You will be more successful if you express your view within a context that shows a similar purpose as your boss’ i.e. a

successful outcome. Show respect before you disagree with a viewpoint or method. It is not necessarily the case that you have to ‘soften’ your disagreement and make it sound unimportant or you’ll upset the boss; what is important is that you clearly and consistently show your respect to your boss so that when times of differing viewpoints occur, (s) he knows that you are being honest about a concern – and that you would like to express it for the good of all.. The language you use and the tone you use are very important. No need to shy away from disagreement; rather shy away from not communicating it properly and at the right time!




An ancient civilization reborn, forgotten fantasies filled with classical sculptures and architectural masterpieces. Behold the wonder that is Emperors Palace. Welcome to the gateway of southern Africa. Conveniently located alongside O. R. Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg, South Africa, Emperors Palace Hotel Casino Convention and Entertainment Resort combines timeless classical elegance with sheer excitement. With luxurious and comfortable accommodation in four award-winning hotels, a glorious health and beauty spa, a magnificent casino with unparalleled gaming enjoyment, the finest in dining options, spectacular entertainment choices including a state-of-the-art cinema complex, world class conference facilities, and impeccable service, Emperors Palace has it all, in a safe and secure resort environment. Emperors Palace is the perfect first or last night stopover, no matter where you travel to or from in southern Africa. INTERNATIONAL SALES: Tel: +27 (0)11 928 1445 | Fax: +27 (0)11 463 5751 | E-mail: intsales@peer mont.com CENTRAL RESERVATIONS: Tel: +27 (0)11 928 1928 | Fax: +27 (0)11 557 0888 | Book online at www.emperorspalace.com or Facebook careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


key feature

Planning your success

John Gatherer and Debbie Craig challenge you to get what you want. Emotions are an extraordinarily powerful motivating force in our lives,


eople are often faced with defining moments or turning points in their lives, where they step up and face their fears, make big decisions, or hesitate and miss important opportunities. It is these moments that can shape the future, and at these times that people need awareness and mental, emotional and spiritual intelligence to make wise choices. To be really effective as a professional, you need to be effective as an individual. You need to master the art of selfleadership or personal mastery, and to be able to choose the most appropriate response and behaviour in any situation, to get what you want. The difference between effective and ineffective people is their level of “consciousness� and awareness of their choices in any given situation, and then being able to choose the BEST option.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

It is the mindsets, approaches, attitudes and choices that make all the difference. You are either in VICTIM mode, where you defend, blame and complain, or in VICTOR mode, where you realise that you have options and choices on how to respond. Not everyone can be a president, a millionaire, an Olympic athlete or a CEO, but everyone has the potential to learn and grow, and become his or her best self. To be the best you can be, and to practice personal mastery, you need to recognise your multi-dimensional nature, and learn to work with and build awareness, knowledge and skills in the aspects of mind, emotions, the physical and spiritual.

The Power of the Mind Our minds are extraordinarily powerful. Various studies agree that we use only

9 between one and 10 per cent of our brain’s capacity. In fact, the mind is very much like a computer, which is only as good as its hardware and software. To make it work you need a skilled operator (you). How much do you know about the subconscious programmes running your relationships, your energy, your health and life? To optimise the power of your mind, you need to understand the roles of the conscious and subconscious mind. See the roles of the conscious and subconscious mind

Consider this... What are you programming your mind with every day at a subconscious level? What are the positive instructions (thoughts) you give it every day? Eg: I can do it!; I will find a way! What are the negative instructions (thoughts) you give it every day? Eg: I will fail again; I’m not smart/pretty enough! How do these thoughts affect your emotions? And results?

The Conscious Mind Has The Power To Think

The Subconscious Mind has The Power To Do

The conscious mind is like a computer programmer: good at thinking, analysing and calculating information from existing information (past) to make decisions, but it cannot do much without the computer and needs lots of energy and rest to keep going.

The subconscious mind is like a computer program: it stores all memory, beliefs and habits and carries out the instructions of the conscious mind to the letter. Once the programme is written, it runs automatically until it is changed. It does not need any extra energy or input.

It operates on beta brainwaves which are fast, active and awake.

It operates on alpha brainwaves which are slower, more passive, relaxed yet alert.

It is the guardian of the subconscious, and is where we spend most of our waking hours.

It is the doorway to our energy, creativity, intuition and inspiration.

It is important to be aware of what thoughts, feelings and habits you are programming on a daily basis or have programmed in the past.

The best way of communicating and reprogramming the subconscious mind is through finding quiet time, relaxing into the alpha state or utilising right-brain techniques such as pictures, movement or music to activate the subconscious.

When the conscious and sub-conscious mind work together, the outcome becomes a reality.

The Power of Emotions Emotions are an extraordinarily powerful motivating force in our lives, being responsible for both the greatest wars and deaths, and the noblest acts of securing peace and serving humanity. In your own lives, emotions drive the roller-coaster of cause and effect, action and reaction, with sometimes unexpected results. E-motion is energy in motion. Emotions give us the energy we need to change or do something about the internal belief or external situation that is causing us pain, or posing a threat to our survival. We feel anger if a boundary is crossed and we need to say no and stand up for ourselves. We feel fear if we need to ready ourselves to fight or take flight. We feel bad when we have done something wrong, leading us to adapt our behaviour for better results next time. In other words, emotions exist to help us to react, take action and survive.

To be the best you can be, and to practice personal mastery, you need to recognise your multi-dimensional nature. Emotions also enable us to experience the wonders of being alive – falling in love, being inspired though music, appreciating beauty and connecting with other like-minded souls. If we can harness these emotions and use the energy that is naturally generated in an intelligent manner, to respond instead of reacting, then we are said to have emotional intelligence or a high emotional quotient (EQ). Emotional intelligence is known to have a significant impact on our performance and success in life. A simple definition of EQ is the ability to be aware of your own and others’ emotions and choices, and therefore to behave appropriately (control emotions and behaviour) in order to attain the best results for all. continued on next page

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


key feature

continued from previous page Rate yourself out of 5 Rating 1 - 5



Awareness of Self

Awareness of own thoughts, feelings, beliefs, stereotypes, attitudes, values, characteristics, preferences, strengths, weaknesses, impact and choices in any given situation.

Self management

Awareness of the choices you have in every moment and to control your thoughts, feelings and behaviour in order to respond appropriately, according to the results you wish to achieve.

Relationship management

The ability to build relationships with others, through developing rapport and trust, sharing and communicating, being flexible and taking risks and managing conflict when it arises. This includes being able to work in a team, and influence, negotiate and manage needs and expectations, for win-win solutions.

The Power of the Spirit Spiritual intelligence has gained popularity in recent years, although it has been something that people have searched for through the ages. Viktor Frankl unraveled some of the mystery of man’s yearning for a life of meaning in his 1956 book Man’s search for meaning, where he describes how the people who survived the concentration camps and coped with the extreme, inhumane conditions, were those who had a sense of purpose and vision for the future. The originators of the term ‘spiritual

intelligence’, Zohar and Marshall (20010, define the concept as follows: It is the intelligence with which we access our deepest meanings, purposes, and highest motivations. It is the intelligence that makes us whole, that gives us our integrity. It is the soul’s intelligence, the intelligence of the deep self. It is the intelligence with which we ask fundamental questions and with which we reframe our answers.

Zohar and Marshall’s 12 qualities of spiritual intelligence:



Knowing what I believe in and value, and what deeply motivates me



Living in and being responsive to the moment


Being vision-and value-led

Acting from principles and deep beliefs, and living accordingly



Seeing larger patterns, relationships and connections; having a sense of belonging



Having the quality of ‘feeling-with’ and deep empathy


Celebration of diversity

Valuing other people for their differences, not despite them


Field independence

Standing against the crowd and having one’s own convictions



Having the sense of being a player in a large drama, of one’s true place in the world


Tendency to ask fundamental ‘Why?’ questions

Needing to understand things and get to the bottom of them


Ability to reframe

Standing back from a situation or problem and seeing the bigger picture; seeing problems in a wider context


Positive use of adversity

Learning and growing from mistakes, setbacks and suffering


Sense of vocation

Feeling called on to serve, to give something back

This is an extract from I Am Talent by John Gatherer and Debbie Craig (Published by Knowres Publishing 011 706 6009). This is an excellent book which focuses on your potential and career options. You need to invest in getting to know yourself and your talents. Enjoy the journey of self-discovery. careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015




he office profession is not really promoted in Delmas, as everybody dreams of upper jobs in the city and as an ambassador I took it as a calling to promote, educate and uplift this profession in my workplace, neighbouring schools and community at large where issues such as unemployment, drug abuse and teenage pregnancy are prevalent. The Delmas Office Professionals Forum was founded and established in February 2014, to empower and inspire all Office Professionals to deliver dazzling service with passion, develop a selfawareness of their values, provide high level training, coaching and support to all office professionals to develop and grow in their roles. Delmas, a small town just 75 kilometres outside of Tshwane, which has a population of about 75 thousand people, most of whom work in the neighbouring cities such as Johannesburg, Pretoria and Emalahleni. The perception goes, if you work in a city, you are smart, vibrant and on the move! “I want to rival this view”, as one of the office professionals in small towns, we are solid, firm and surely can contribute to our profession irrespective of the unique social challenges we are faced with.

My message to PAs is that we need to assist young women in all communities and equip them with life skills to take pride in themselves. If small town professionals were to be developed and recognised, then it takes one to stand and bring about the waves of change. We as office professionals need to surround ourselves with those on the same mission as us!

Spotlight on the

remarkable Every issue will see us meet a PA who has achieved something beyond the call of duty or been recognized for extraordinary work performance. In this issue we meet Tersia Pretorius who launched a secretarial forum in Delmas.

I am a firm believer in my profession and with that; commitment is not told but shown through hard work and tireless efforts to improvement. I am an ambassador of office professionals and I anchor this by being focused, clear of my role and ensure quality service at all times and I also expect this from fellow office professionals. To guarantee that our profession is not taken for granted I ensure that Executive Leaders know that the office profession is a full career path, which is flexible (can fit in any industry) and meant for those committed individuals who want to serve and uphold excellence in all that they do. If you think about it, most industries will not be effective without office professionals! I am married and have two adult children. Previously I have worked for Attorneys and became a Legal Assistant and later on a Legal Advisor (Paralegal). It was only when I joined the mining industry that I realized my passion. I have extensive experience in planning, organizing, managing across complex business matrix and my contribution is solidly based on tried and tested experiences. Nelson Mandela said: “We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in our hands to make a difference”; and I commit myself to making a difference in the Delmas Community through my passion and contributions! If I ever want to change one thing about myself it would be to start wearing “normal, flat” shoes as I am a high heel lover! My belief is “the higher the heel, the closer to heaven”. I am always in high heels and sometimes, just sometimes, would love to be wearing “flatty’s”, but this is so difficult for me to change! My outlet over weekends (as I am an animal activist) I assist animal organizations by fostering and caring for rescued cats. I have 4 cats at home which are all rescued animals. And for fun over weekends I also love to dance; I can dance all night long!

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


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Powerpoint Animation Tips “Oh no! Not another boring PowerPoint presentation! My eyes, my eyes…!!!” Feroza Sader gives us invaluable pointers. Have you ever been bored by a PowerPoint presentation? Or have you been subjected to a barrage of PowerPoint animations and transitions that cause every word to flip, twist, or turn? PowerPoint animation can control the appearance of elements on a slide and how those elements enter and exit a slide. And

Rename All Your Objects


Before you add any more effects, it’s a good idea to rename all the objects on your slides. You’ll quickly lose track of which text box is the title and which graphic is the clock if you try to rely on the generic default names.

To do this, select an object and then click the Format tab (note: the Format tab is visible only if an object on the screen is selected). Next, select Arrange > Selection Pane,and the Selection window opens with a list of all your animations. Double-click each one and give it an easily identifiable, descriptive name. When finished, close the window. Now, if you add more effects to any of the current objects, PowerPoint will use these names.

it’s a powerful feature when used strategically. There are even ways to create custom animations to really wow people at your next presentation! Here are ten tips to help you add a little zing! to your next presentation.

Animation combo


A single object on a PowerPoint slide may have many animation effects applied at the same time. Adjusting the settings for each effect will create a combination that most likely will be a unique one. PowerPoint has a toolbar called Animation Pane that gives you total control over the animations on a slide. This makes creating sophisticated animations very easy with only a few clicks. To show the Animation Pane, switch to the Animations tab in your PowerPoint and click the respective button.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015



To Change The Effect Timing From the Effect Options dialog box, select the Timing tab From here, you can add a delay before the effect starts, change the duration of the effect, and control whether or not the effect repeats.

Best practice for business purposes

For business purposes I recommend that you stick to the following simple animations when producing your slides: Appear – The object simply pops on the screen Fade – The object fades in or out in a way that’s a bit slicker and more deliberate

Wipe – Imagine an invisible eraser wipes the object on or off of the slide Zoom – The object appears as if from far away, “zooming” forward into position (I prefer using this particular animation to add emphasis to important points) If you have a particularly busy slide, use exit animations when appropriate to remove the clutter and keep your audience’s eyes moving forward with you. Also stick to the same general animations throughout your presentation to add consistency to the story you are trying to tell.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


Understand where your audience is looking



Another tip is to pay close attention to “eye flow.” In other words, understand what the audience should be focusing on, and use animations to encourage that focus. Direction matters with PowerPoint animations too. For example, beginning your slide with a critical point or image at the top will tell your audience what they should be looking at first. By simply fading down the supporting information (rather than having stuff fly in from all angles), you can ensure that their eyes will follow along with your message. Simplicity is key!

Circle an object


A great way to emphasize and draw attention to an object on a slide is to circle it. Of course, the easy way is to insert a circle, and use the Appear or Fade entrance animation. Be sure to format the circle with no fill. I like to use a red outline and give it a weight of at least 2 pt. To format the circle, follow these steps: Right-click and choose Format Shape. In the Fill section, choose No Fill from the drop-down list. In the Line section, choose a red colour and change the Weight.

The right effects at all times The most basic tip I can give you here is to have equally dynamic transitions and effects throughout the entire presentation and to add more dramatic and epic effects only on your more important slides.

Use high-quality graphics Use high-quality graphics including photographs. You can take your own high-quality photographs with your digital camera or use the plethora of high-quality images available on line (be cautious of copyright issues, however). Never simply stretch a small, low-resolution photo to make it fit your layout – doing so will degrade the resolution even further. Avoid using PowerPoint Clip Art or other cartoonish line art. Again, if it is included in the software, your audience has seen it a million times before. It may have been interesting in 1993, but today the inclusion of such clip art often undermines the professionalism of the presenter.

7 8 9


YouTube tutorial – how to make cool motion text effects Make cool motion text effects in PowerPoint – from fire text, to shiny text, to anything you can imagine! This is a fun and pretty easy technique that can be done in all versions of PPT. Enjoy! https://powerpointspice.wordpress. com/2013/11/07/amazing-motion-fireand-shiny-text-effects-in-powerpointadvanced-animation-tutorial/ I also found some really useful free sites for motion backgrounds, pictures, and music. Freestockmusic.com Motionbackgroundsforfree.com Stockphotosforfree.com


To reorder effects from the animation pane On the Animation Pane, click and drag an effect up or down. The effects will reorder themselves.

There are exceptions, of course, and not all PowerPoint art is dreadful, but use carefully and judiciously.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

Marie Grey and Associates



Meet some of our To p S p e a k e r s Dr Mzukisi Qobo Leadership Consultant • Political Risk Analyst • Insightful Speaker Transformational Leadership • Macro-Political Trends • Emerging Powers and Global Challenges

Clem Sunter Best Selling Author • Top Speaker Sustainable Business • Strategic Conversations • Decision Making and Tactics • Strategy • Scenario Planning • SA's Possible Future

Laura Machaba Abiodun International Speaker • Trusted Advisor and Mediator • Organisational Development Consultant Leadership • Enhanced Performance • Accelerated Growth • Strategy • Relationship Building • Change

Quinton Coetzee Dynamic Business Speaker • Wildlife Expert • Adventurer Adaptability • Managing Change Teamwork • Leadership • Strategy • Performance • African Wisdom

As the country's leading speakers' bureau, Marie Grey and Associates' speakers provide organizations with information to assist them in leadership, teamwork, keeping a step ahead of their competition, managing change, branding, marketing, sales, service excellence and much more. We can also source speakers who do not appear on our list or website. If you have s p e c i a l o b j e c t i ve s that need to be met, we can make specific recommendations and source those speakers for you. For more information visit our website at www.mariegreyspeakers.com “I would just like to say the HUGEST thank you for all that you did with our speakers for Sales and DFC Conference. Your speakers were spot on and exceptionally well received and spoken about afterwards. Thank you just doesn’t seem enough!” Penelope Howie • Head of Events •Discovery Marketing

M a r i e G re y & A s s o c i a t e s Providing Top Speakers for Conferences, Seminars & Special Events. Suite 133 Postnet X2600 Houghton 2041 Tel: +27 11 447 9485 Fax: +27 86 211 7759 E-mail: mgrey@global.co.za www.mariegreyspeakers.com

We K n o w W h a t We ' r e T a l k i n g A b o u t ! careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

work trends


have seen so many changes within our profession as PAs and Executive Assistants over the last 30+ years and more so, regarding the level and standard of work and the expectations required. I mean the speed at which work now can be done, is mind-boggling. Everything seems so rushed and pressured. We are given tasks which need to be performed within a very tight/short period of time. If we work in an environment where there are no offices, all open plan, we need to be mindful of our colleagues, our emotions, our responses and more so our body language. I come from working in an environment where I had my own office (my place comfort and quiet) and I now operate in an open plan environment, where you have to speak softer than normal, smile and always look on top of everything! We are stretching ourselves to the limit I know of fellow PAs working from early in the morning to late at night, every night, every week; I guess somewhere along the line your body and mind are going to decide when you need to stop. A significant number of companies are cutting down on their staff complement, and they are not employing any more PAs or Executive Assistants to help with the workload – it just has to be managed. We seriously need to have a mind shift moment: Take a good hard look at what we do, what needs to be accomplished within our 8-hour work day and make sure it gets done After reading an article by Robert Di Giacomo on “How to handle a heavier workload and still get ahead” I thought it would be fitting to share his ideas. If you are now working for more than two people (and you have been working for one for so long) this can be daunting. So let us look at some ways for you to cope:

Ask questions (the right questions) No matter how busy you get – when

More being done with

less time!

How do we cope and change our routines to embrace the pressures of the contemporary workplace? Michele Thwaits advises.

your boss/manager approaches you with additional duties, you can’t just say no. Talk to him/her and discuss the specifics of the request and ask questions such as “when is the assignment needed by?”. And if he/she can’t give you an answer, make a suggestion as to when you can get it to them. Many a time when you are approached by the boss with a request you are in the middle of something and if you are anything like me, you are focused and on track with a task and BAM! the boss comes in and I’m thrown; I have to shift into another gear – so asking questions is so important as it also shows that although you are snowed under, you are willing to do it in a time agreeable to both.

Get your priorities in order, and get organised Get your manager to help you prioritise according to his/her expectations, and then organise yourself to approach those in appropriate timeframes.


ask yourself what is important and what needs to get done - and without fail – versus what can wait or be done at a later stage. It is no use worrying or stressing about something needing to be done next week or followed up next week when you have other priorities. “Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson and Albert Einstein” – H Jackson Brown Jr.

Be your own advocate If you find a way to streamline or help improve overall efficiency of your department/organization then speak up. Share your thoughts and information so that everyone benefits, including you. It is important to keep your manager, colleagues and fellow PAs in the loop If you are all on the same page, just imagine how much easier it will be to get things done.

Take a break If you are working longer hours than the norm, you need to take more breaks (not less). It is said that you should take a break approximately every 90 minutes where you at least get up from your desk and stretch, or take a walk, go make yourself a cup of coffee - by the time you get back to your desk, you are thinking a lot clearer and what seemed like a daunting task to complete, now looks so much easier to do.

Stephen Covey “Most of us spend too much time on what is urgent and not enough time on what is important”

Even with regard to your daily routine, careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


career feature

Get promoted make an impact be extraordinary Invaluable advice by Deirdre Elphick-Moore.

It’s great to have a firm idea of your career ambitions, and once you have a clear goal in mind, translate it into an action statement that you can easily remember and recall every day!


t’s important to have an action statement of where you want to be career-wise – and one that you can easily recall every day! This action statement will serve as your compass, it will drive how you approach each day and task within it. Examples of relevant action statements might be “exceed expectations”, “raise the standard” or “strive to do what would be expected of me in the role I want to get promoted to”. With your action statement in mind, you can apply it to the following:

Do your job This sounds straightforward – but firstly you need to go back to basics and be absolutely clear about what you were hired to do and achieve:

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

Know your key performance indicators and the areas that you and your business need to achieve successes.

Identify your responsibilities and accountabilities.

Know what tasks you need to accomplish.

Learn how your position fits in the grand scheme of things.

Strive to go beyond what is on your job description; you need to stand out from the crowd if you hope to get promoted.

Innovate the mundane A hallmark of an extraordinary employee is efficiency. Find new ways to improve even the mundane work: improve your turnaround times, increase output, refine quality and ensure peers add value to their work and themselves. Innovation will not just help you improve your work; it can help the whole organisation. By being innovative you show you are concerned about the company’s processes and success. Likewise, it underscores your creativity, your ability to find improvements where no one else saw. Again, this can be a differentiator for you.


exhibits knowledge and skills but they possess exemplary attitude and habits. Attitude is everything to be professional at all times, be disciplined, be of help to others and be respectful, apply the corporate values to your role, have positive office relationships and be of a positive disposition. The right mindset facilitates productivity. In addition, it cultivates positive relationships.

A hallmark of an Employees may not be viewed as indispensable. extraordinary employee However, they can be is efficiency. seen as valuable assets to the company. Once you’ve consistently Deirdre Elphick-Moore is a co-founder proven your worth, the company will take of The Office Coach, a soft-skills and note of your effort and more importantly personal development consultancy. your contribution. She has an Honours Degree in Expand your skills To be at your peak performance you need to know your current skill set and what skills you need. Likewise, your potential to grow in the company increases when you have relevant knowledge and skills. The more you can contribute to the company the higher your value.

As harsh as it may sound, employees are investments of the company. Increasing your worth to the company means increasing your value. Being extraordinary is a daily choice; so ask yourself: “What would an extraordinary PA do today?” Then go do it!

Psychology and over 10 years of international experience in human capital management at Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley. Co-founding The Office Coach in 2009, she now focuses on personal and workplace effectiveness training and development. More info on +27 (0)76 321 8918 | kimberley@ sapphirestreet.com

Learn necessary skills and knowledge, keep updated with developments in your field/industry, learn from more experienced peers and ask questions to broaden your perspective. It is also important to seek constructive feedback from key decision makers in the business. If you acknowledge their feedback and adapt your behaviours accordingly, you will be noticed by those who make decisions regarding promotions.

Have a productive attitude and Habits that lead to constructive action An





careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


personal development

You in the


Brand beyond GROOMING A strong personal brand is your passport to success, so says Lanley Southern.


here should be no dispute regarding the importance of aligning your personal brand to that of the organisation you work at, or render a service to.

Let’s consider a broad yet clear definition of the noun “BRAND”: A kind of variety of something distinguished by a distinctive characteristic, which leaves an indelible impression. A good brand distinguishes one person or product from another. The word “image” however is defined as a likeness or representation of something previously perceived, in the absence of the original stimulus e.g. “that child is the image of her mother”. In the case of a politician on the campaign trail - a “likeness”

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

or image of an ideal is created. Very little, if any regard, is paid to the authentic actual person or the innate “make-up” of the ”representative” of the party, hence so many incidents of politicians falling from grace when the real identity surfaces.

How does all this apply to you? As a PA your personal grooming is all about branding, the branding of your`self’. Having a good personal brand ensures the following: •

That you deliver the message of who you are, through not only your dress or overall “package”, but also your conduct, values and manner!

A solid and authentic personal brand confirms and solidifies

23 image and/or display disrespect for the organisation’s image? Could this lead to being overlooked for promotion?

which may be described as the practice of marketing yourself and your career as brands.

your credibility. It shows that you are consistent in the manner you project your essence through the way you’re dressed. Consistency builds trust. It is further supported by the manner in which you interact and deliver on what is expected of you. Your brand connects your target prospects to you emotionally. •

A healthy brand motivates, inspires and creates loyalty. It resides within the hearts and minds of friends, colleagues and associates. A brand is thus the sum total of people’s experiences and perceptions of you. Your personal brand can determine a life mate, stable employment and even a healthy social circle. Remember, at first glance or meeting, nothing is known about you except what is seen. The decision to form an association with you is purely based on a perceived value of promise! Fashion or personal style is thus maybe not as elitist or fickle as is sometimes described, but rather vital in creating the career or life you aspire to.

It is about self-packaging in order to use who you are to get what you want from life! It is certainly about what you are known for. People should be able to say what your unique promise of value is at the mere sight of you, or at the very mention of your name. You will agree that a good stable personal brand demonstrates a great deal of success in just about every sphere of life. Are you consistent in your personal style? Do you maintain a standard without risking becoming “stale” or rigid? Evolving your style and brand without compromising your reputation is important - you need to stay fresh and progressive. Most importantly, is your personal brand aligned with the values of your organisation? Example: - You’re an Executive Personal Assistant and you operate at the top. The air is thin up there... Like it or not, you’re under constant scrutiny from “above and below”.

Points to ponder:

Personal branding has a few objectives,

Do you think or agree that either an exhibitionist, matronly or slovenly style of grooming can earn one perhaps unfairly so - labels such as “company poppie” or ““miss priss” or “slob” instead of being known and/or seen as a respected office professional who adds immeasurable value?

If you do indeed believe in your competence, professionalism and skill, ever wondered whether you look like the woman/man behind the (wo)man who runs your organisation? Do you actually believe that through your valued skills you drive this country’s economy? Have you factored your presentation into the equation?

Your next time in front of your bevelled cheval mirror should be a tough one! Is what you see a true reflection of who you really are and the brand you wish to convey to your colleagues, superiors or society? Lanley Southern is The Accessories Guru, a personal brand stylist NOT an Image consultant. His talent lies in unleashing a new found awareness of self, and develop a strong personal brand for each individual .Offerings also include corporate workshops and guest speaking. More information from lanleysouthern@gmail.com and on www. facebook.com/IamTheAccessoriesGuru.

Do you know what your company values (code) are with regard to your “dress”?

Does your personal aesthetic hinder your upward mobility?

Is your self presentation/brand a representation of your value system (discreet/trustworthy/reliable/ competent/meticulous/methodical/ loyal)? How does this As a PA your personal manifest in your outputs grooming is all about and performance within branding your workplace?

Do you think or agree that employees who wear plunging necklines or revealing clothes are reflecting a poor or frivolous self-

By clearly and thoughtfully defining your brand, you create a foundation for all other components to build on. Dressing appropriately is the easiest and probably best way to start.

Objectives of personal branding

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


www.eventpics.co.za Mobile : +27 (0)82 371 5279 Telephone : +27 (0)11 803 8983 Email : anne@eventpics.co.za

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015



Coaching by Linda Windell



As an EA for a CEO I have been allocated a junior secretary to help me out with the more basic tasks which ease my workload. She needs to accompany me to some meetings and events and she is painfully shy. She turns into a wall-flower and I need her to be more interactive and communicative. Please advise as to how I can best help her as I don’t have much time on my hands to coach her.

Answer Shy people are generally just completely overwhelmed by certain social expectations made of them - they often believe they cannot contribute anything worthwhile and the fear of being wrong or asking a silly question often inhibits them from participating in a business meeting or even sharing their opinion amongst colleagues in a team discussion. What often makes matters worse is others’ perception of them being shy in the first place… this exaggerates the fear of what others are thinking of them. There are many ways to help the development of self-confidence in a shy individual, sometimes by allowing them to make small decisions that don’t require any risk taking can provide lots of fuel for self-esteem. For example: You’ve noticed that the reception area in your office is starting to look a little worn out and needs a bit of décor uplifting, ask her for suggestions on how to spruce it up! She will feel like her opinion is worthwhile and is more likely to make an effort to share her thoughts with others when she is not fearful of being rejected. Such a small task that can make all the difference to her and that also gives you the opportunity to gauge her readiness to communicate with external suppliers, colleagues and clients. Whilst you may need this junior assistant to attend meetings and events – always remember that

people will develop and grow at their own pace, and according to the level that they’re at. Putting an introvert into a situation where she is not confident is not going to make your job any easier - if anything, it may make your task more challenging than it already is. It’s also vitally important to make your objections very clear before going into a meeting. For example: “We are meeting Mr Brown at The Radisson Hotel at 10am so that we can view the function rooms for a particular event (disclose as much information as you can), a decision needs to be made on the room as well as the menu). I want to ensure that we can incorporate the following activities at the function... I would like you to take responsibility for the following element... ” Etc. etc. Giving an introvert a bit of a heads up before any social interaction provides a little bit of confidence and also gives her time to think things through before she is required to do any talking. Coaching a younger staff member to become more interactive in the workplace is definitely not going to happen overnight, but there are lots of tools available out there that will help the internal process for the introvert. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Assessment is a good example and has been used for many years by people to try and understand their own personality type and the way they prefer to communicate and interact with the world around them. It’s only a natural assumption that once a person can recognize their own personality traits only then can they identify the behaviours and situations that may cause them to “shut down” or withdraw. This test can be done online at http:// www.mbtionline.com/ and is highly recommended for anybody wanting to understand themselves better, communicate better and also appreciate the differences in others.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


international gurus

Meet Bonnie Low-Kramen Assistants can be of enormous help to their managers to be better ones. Assistants can be a manager’s most powerful secret weapon, says Bonnie Low-Kramen


onnie is a Jersey (USA) girl whose voice is one of the most respected in the profession. With honesty and humour, she pulls the curtain back on a career that is glamorized and misunderstood. She is known for her passionate commitment to professional assistants and to affecting positive change in the American workplace believing that the way to do this is through education and training of both assistants and managers. Both groups are the backbone of American business and as such, are deserving of professional development in the form of training.

Seeing there were so few resources for assistants, she authored the best-selling book, “Be the Ultimate Assistant: A celebrity assistant’s secrets to working with any highpowered employer.” Her articles on workplace issues affecting professional assistants are widely published. Bonnie is a cofounder of the professional association New York Celebrity Assistants (NYCA) and works to build positive collaborations and networks between assistants around the world. We asked Bonnie three questions:

1. Why did you choose to be a PA? I’ve never been asked that before. The truth is that the profession chose me although I have it in my DNA since my mother was a legal secretary and dad was an accountant. Office supplies were plentiful in our house! When I began working with Oscar winner Olympia Dukakis in 1986, we didn’t even know there was even a name for what I was doing. What I knew is that she careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

had an urgent need for help to keep her life running smoothly and I seemed to have the skills required. I was winging it every single day which was the motivation for seeking community and resources. I now know that those feelings of frustration have led to everything that is happening now with my training, writing, and speaking. Olympia and I were a great team for 25 years.

2. Why are you so passionate to share information? I learned by burn and I don’t want assistants to have to wing it anymore. Plus, this is a far more complicated workplace than when I first started. Training is simply not an option anymore and I want to be part of the solution for assistants to get what they need. From the beginning of my career, I was shocked by the appalling lack of resources for assistants. That isn’t the case with other professions and we must do better. I cofounded NYCA in 1996 – New York Celebrity Assistants – and it was clear that several heads were much better than one. Everything became possible. My imagination took me to this idea: WHAT IF the world’s assistants could be connected and easily share what they know generously and without keeping score? WHAT IF we could break down the silos and have a vital global community? These ideas are the why for my work.

3. Let us have an article on how best to work with managers. See her article on next page.



Ways to Manage Your Manager


ssistants can be of enormous help to their managers to be better ones. Assistants can be a manager’s most powerful secret weapon, says Bonnie LowKramen

Here’s what happened to me. For 25 years I worked as the Personal Assistant to Oscar winning actress Olympia Dukakis (Moonstruck, Steel Magnolias). What I experienced is that people would say things to me as her assistant that they would never say directly to her. This automatically meant that I had information that she did not have. Using this information in productive and proactive ways is a key element of managing your manager and potentially sticky situations. I could give Olympia a heads-up about issues that I knew she would want to know. How did I know this? I asked the question, “May I tell you what I think is going on?” and inevitably, the answer would be, “Yes, of course.” Was I always right? No, but over time, Olympia came to trust this information as important pieces to a project’s puzzle, whether it was a movie, a play, or the bathroom renovation.

Assistants can be good managers too! Around the world, this is the dynamic of the assistant/manager relationship. In general, people censor themselves around “the boss.” That’s just the way it is and it probably always will be. Therefore, the most talented assistants make themselves accessible to receive the truth about any given situation and the smartest managers are the ones who recognize that the assistant can be their eyes and ears and value them as such. The manager empowers the staff to say what they see and hear. An assistant is so much more than “just an assistant,” and in fact, is an integral part of the management team. Here are 8 of my favourite ways for assistants to “manage up.”

Have Mutual Respect. No relationship is worth anything without mutual respect. Managers have a tough job to do as do assistants. Everyone has an important role to play and the most healthy relationships are built on a foundation of respect. Not everyone is cut out to be a great manager, just as not everyone is cut out to be a top-flight assistant. Acknowledgement of one another’s roles is vital. It’s as simple as an assistant truthfully saying, “You handled that really well. I learned a lot from watching you.” Managers need


feedback too. Show Empathy. Put yourself in your manager’s shoes and act accordingly. Imagine flying the redeye and then having to hit the ground running at the 9AM client meeting. If you have ever done this, you know how tough it can be. Working through jet lag remedies and making sure your manager’s favorite energy-boosting foods are waiting for her/him at the meeting, are examples of how empathy serves everyone. Say, “I know that next week is going to be a bear for you. Here are 3 ideas of what we can do to make it go easier. What do you think?” The better you get to know your manager, the more you can just go ahead and make these things happen without asking. Olympia would say, “If you have respect and empathy, everything is possible.” Yes, indeed.


Help your manager be successful. The best way for an assistant to not come off as a threat to a manager is to help her/him be successful and to look great. Exceed expectations and offer ideas that may be new ones to your manager. When he rocks the PowerPoint presentation that you designed or she hosts the lunch meeting at the trés cool restaurant you discovered, congratulations are in order for both of you. Then you get to move on together to the next project. The healthiest assistant/manager relationships are ones where each of you is invested in the other’s success.


Scratch their itch and ease their pain. What is keeping your manager up at night? My wise colleague Nancy Fox (The Business Fox) told this to me years ago. She said that if an assistant can figure out how to (figuratively, of course!) scratch their manager’s itch and ease their pain, that they will never be unemployed. An assistant can stay alert to the hottest angst-producing issues and come up with ways to alleviate them. Make it your business to know your manager’s immediate and long-term goals.


continued on next page

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

international gurus


continued from previous page When in doubt, ask. Still in doubt, ask again. Assistants can support their managers be better managers by the thoughtful asking of questions that helps to clarify situations. Don’t assume and make a poor decision out of insufficient or inaccurate information. The best managers understand that it is a sign of strength to ask questions when you are unsure.


Speak truth to power. Become your manager’s most valuable asset when you can be depended on to say the hard thing that needs to be said but no one wants to say it out of fear. Assistants need to be supported to say what they know. If you are unsure, try saying, “I have a thought about XYZ. Would you like me to share it?” It is respectful to ask first and wait for the answer. See what happens. If it doesn’t work out the first time, don’t let it stop you from trying again.


Don’t Suffer in Silence. It is not a matter of if but when problems are going to arise. Assistants need to address them quickly, directly, and thoughtfully. Managers are depending upon assistants to tell them what they need to know, even if it hurts a little. Many are oblivious or clueless to issues, mainly because their staff erroneously protect them from the reality. The best managers will not kill the proverbial messenger for telling them the truth. Hey, I never said it was easy being an assistant or a manager! That is why each of you needs to be compensated well. Bullying behaviors are unacceptable and not to be tolerated at any time. Speaking up is imperative to create awareness. Only then can solutions be found. Do not reward bad behavior by permitting them to poison whole offices. Assistants can be integral in short-circuiting workplace bullies by supporting their managers to take action to build cultures of respect.


Assistants can be good managers too. Read and study leadership and management books and articles. Take professional development workshops and classes. Ideally these will be paid for by your manager and company. Be your manager’s invaluable right arm when you strengthen your own leadership muscles. Two heads are definitely better than one. After all, being a good manager takes training and practice, just like everything else.


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Leadership expert Jack Zenger conducted a 2012 poll of 17,000 leaders around the world. He calculated the average age that a leader received their first training in learning how to manage people – 42. Given that the average college graduate is in their 20’s, it is easy to do the math and realize that managers need as much support as they can get to be effective managers. Assistants can help them to do precisely that. Visit www.betheultimateassistant.com for more info

nAMrad careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

doing it better


Excel’s hidden The Binary Workbook



any PAs have a common problem when it comes to spreadsheets; they find that they simply become too big after a certain period of time. We have seen 130mb spreadsheets!

The problem with these is that they become very slow and ineffective, thus causing employees to be highly unproductive.

The hidden secret in Microsoft Excel Excel created a version called the “Binary Workbook”. When you save your files in this version it can decrease the file size by up to 10 times and therefore it will work much quicker. The files will then have .xlsb extension.

What is a binary file in Excel? This format is organised into streams and substreams. Each spreadsheet worksheet is stored in its own substream.

headers, which give the record type and length. Cell records, which contain the actual cell data as well as formulas and cell properties, reside in the cell table. String values are not stored in the cell record, but in a shared strings table, which the cell record references. Row records contain property information for row and cell locations. Only cells that contain data or individual formatting are stored in the substream. In short, it is just a better and more structured way of saving your files. The risk of files getting corrupt is reduced and the files will be more user-friendly and effective.

Will Macros work? Yes. All function of a normal excel workbook or a macro enabled workbook will work in this format. Heinrich van der Westhuizen, Managing Director: Speccon (Pty) Ltd. More information on Speccon training on Tel: 087 802 7182

All the data is contained in records that have

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


focus feature

Join our campaign. Spread the word!

Green Office Week®’s 2015 Green Goodwill Campaign A campaign inviting you to raise your own bar! If ever you wanted to do something special and make your life significant, this is your opportunity. Green Office Week®, takes place annually in South Africa, and is meant to create opportunities for individuals (inter-office or inter-company) to communicate on eco-friendly behaviours with the purpose of revitalising or initiating a ‘green’ conscience. Green Office Week®, also known by its acronym GOW, sets a theme for workplaces every year, which drives actions to specific areas, and this year (2015) the focus is on spreading Green Goodwill. In 2015, GOW’s theme is:

You have the Power To spread Green Goodwill. Therefore, the Green Goodwill Campaign derives from the 2015 theme. This info-kit contains information on: ◆ Info on the Green Goodwill Campaign ◆ Info on becoming a Green Goodwill Champion careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

◆ Info on the Green Goodwill Charter ◆ Info on an Action Plan


Green Goodwill Info Sheet: FAQs

We provide all the info you need to inspire yourself and inspire others. When does the Green Goodwill Campaign take place? Green Office Week® in 2015 runs from Monday 20 April to Friday 24 April. It’s Green Goodwill Campaign aims to inspire as many individuals and workplaces nationwide as possible to take the week as an opportunity to reflect and see how their day-by-day behaviours could improve to become more eco-friendly and efficient. Although the campaign kicks off on 20 April, the first day of Green Office Week®, ideally it should remain as a mindset long after.

What does the Green Goodwill Campaign mean to achieve? Adhering to the Green Goodwill Campaign means that At least: Working citizens focus on their everyday behaviours which could lead to unnecessary wastage of key resources (water, energy,) and inculcate a mindset of recycling, reusing and reducing their carbon footprint. A number of toolkits are available on the GOW website: www.greenofficeweek.co.za At best: 1. Getting organisations to adopt and sign a Green Goodwill Charter 2. Getting individuals to volunteer to become Green Goodwill Ambassadors, and sign a Pledge. Every workplace, or leader, can decide at what level they would like to engage in the campaign. GOW provides documents to assist the decision and ensure participants know what is expected and what to do.

Where can one get more information on the campaign? All information and documents are available on Green Office Week®’s website: www.greenofficeweek.co.za.

How does one go about joining and participating in the campaign? It’s easy. The information in this info-kit helps you decide how involved you want to be. There are various ways and levels of involvement.

This is an excellent opportunity for adopting and signing a Green Goodwill Charter, and/or volunteering to become the Green Goodwill Ambassador at your office/workplace.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


focus feature

The Charter enhances your green credentials

The Green Goodwill Charter for organisations All organisations, large or small, private or public now have an opportunity to show the nation their contemporary thinking and behaviours. The Green Goodwill Charter is both a document and a process which organisations are invited to visibly commit to, and therefore show a willingness to embrace green goodwill principles and values. In 2015, in addition to providing the usual annual supporting toolkit, GOW elevates its invitation to organisations by asking them to adopt and sign a Green Goodwill Charter. The act of actually signing the Charter and displaying it, communicates a commitment to adopt a culture of eco-consciousness and eco-conscientiousness. A Charter is a document which spells out a series of principles, values and intentions. The Green Goodwill Charter spells out what organisations need to respect and commit in terms of being a green goodwill supporter. In compiling the Charter, GOW used many sources and references to assist it in its content. Get your Charter below on page 38 careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


Green Goodwill Charter Info Sheet: FAQs

We provide the aims and criteria which quickly guides you through the process. What are the Green Goodwill Charter’s aims? GOW’s Green Goodwill Charter aims to get as many as organisations as possible to become active agents and champions of spreading ‘green goodwill’.

What is the criteria for an organisation to sign the Charter? The criteria is a genuine intent and an honest commitment to becoming eco-friendly and eco-efficient.

Who should sign the Green Goodwill Charter? Each organisation can decide who it should be: CEO or COO or CFO or Sustainability Director. Equally, it can be any executive, manager or supervisor who signs on behalf of his/her department or branch office. If none of the above, then it can be signed by the Green Goodwill Ambassador. This then reflects the team’s intentions and not necessarily the organisation.

What does one do once the Green Goodwill Charter is signed? There are a number of ensuing actions: §

Display it where everyone can see it. Where there are a number of buildings/branch offices involved, you can

display a scanned copy of it. §

Add this factor to your organisation’s annual report.

(Optional) Send a scanned copy of it to GOW’s offices: gow@greenofficeweek.co.za

Is it compulsory to appoint a Green Goodwill Ambassador if an organisation signs the Green Goodwill Charter ? No. However, It would be best, to have one, or to have someone in the organisation who is “seen” to be the champion of eco-friendliness – this could be the procurement officer, or someone else that people will recognise as a ‘champion’ of the green cause. It’s your choice.

Where can we get a copy of the Green Goodwill Charter? Get your Charter below on page 38

Adopt the Green Goodwill Charter and you also have the choice of encouraging individuals to volunteer to become Green Goodwill Ambassadors.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


Volunteer and raise your professional status

Green Goodwill Ambassadors * Team leaders of Green Goodwill Campaign * Encourage others. Take the lead. Show the way. Green Office Week®’ would be honoured to have you participate in its campaign; to count on you as a fellow South African to become an ambassador of ‘green’ behaviours. By participating you are giving yourself a badge of honour because you ARE making a difference – a difference to the way workplaces function, to the environment, and (no matter how large or small) to the planet earth’s survival. The reasons for work teams to embrace eco-friendly behaviours are compelling because on one hand these can culminate in savings which, makes the workplace more financially stable, and/or on the other can even secure performance bonuses for employees from the budget surplus. Green Office Week®’s 2015 Green Goodwill Campaign is largely dependent on volunteers at workplaces to become Green Goodwill Ambassadors and drive their colleagues to adopt more green behaviours, as well as spread the green goodwill message to their suppliers. This is your invitation, and opportunity, to take the baton and become part of a world movement which is striving to ensure our planet stands a chance. In compiling the Pledge, GOW used many sources and references to assist it in its content. Make your pledge. Get your Pledge document below on page 39 careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


Green Goodwill Ambassador's Info Sheet: FAQs We provide the aims and criteria which quickly guides you through the requirements. Who can become a Green Goodwill Ambassador? Any individual at a workplace can volunteer to become one if (s)he: §

Is passionate about the environment


Is able to inspire and lead others to adopt new behaviours.

Can one appoint a Green Goodwill Ambassador or does it have to be a ‘volunteer’? Either or.

Can one be a Green Goodwill Ambassador in an organisation that does not want to adopt a Green Goodwill Charter? Yes. In this case, the Green Goodwill Ambassador just signs the Green Goodwill Ambassador Pledge and leads his/her team/department/branch office to become caring ‘green’ working citizens.

What is the role of a Green Goodwill Ambassador? There are two levels of engagement: A Green Goodwill Ambassador can take on the role of ‘Facilitator’ or ‘Leader’. In both cases, the Green Goodwill Ambassador has to sign the Pledge.

What is the difference between being a Facilitator or Leader? A Green Goodwill Ambassador as Facilitator is not obliged to follow the Green Goodwill Campaign’s Action Plan. As facilitator, the role is to engage team members on what they would like to focus on during then campaign. The details of your role as facilitator are available on Page 36. Advantages of this choice: The green behavioural expectations are totally suggested by the team. The deadlines and ways of measuring success are decided upon by the team. Some teams prefer this method of creating their own road-maps and not follow templates. A Green Goodwill Ambassador as Leader gets the team to follow the Green Goodwill Campaign’s Action Plan template, and invites input to tailor-make it to the particular team involved. The details of your role as leader are available on Page 37. Advantages of this choice: The Action Plan template is available (on request) so that the actions required are mostly drawn up and this saves busy teams from having to spend time drawing up a road-map from scratch. NB To get the Action Plan template please email us on gow@greenoffice week.co.za

It's all happening in April. In your own way you can become part of the "in-generation" - an enlightened generation. careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


focus feature


Green Goodwill Ambassador as Facilitator Your preparation requires that you Familiarise yourself with all Info Sheet/FAQs on: ◆ Green Goodwill Campaign

◆ Green Goodwill Ambassador and the Pledge

Suggested process

◆ Green Goodwill Charter ◆ (Optional: The Action Plan)


Show them the Green Goodwill Ambassador’s Pledge

and inform them that you are going to sign it in their presence. 1

Before April 20:

Inform your manager of the Green

Goodwill Campaign and of the Green Goodwill Charter by sharing the Info Sheet/FAQs with him/her. 2

Ask your manager who (s)he suggests should sign the

Charter. Inform him/her that it can be signed by an executive or by a team leader ie. the Green Goodwill Ambassador. 3

If (s)he for, some reason, does not wish to have a Charter,

inform him/her that you would still like to drive the GOW Green Goodwill Campaign. 4 If there is no objection, have a meeting with your team and

Display it where appropriate. If the Charter has been signed, display this one as well. 6

Inform them of the benefits of the Green Goodwill

Campaign in terms of “doing good” for the environment whilst “doing good” for the office budget. 7

Ask them what suggestions they would like to make on

how the whole team can be more eco-conscious and be less wasteful of resources. Write the ideas down as your very own action plan. 8

Distribute the plan electronically to the team, and inform

inform them of the campaign, and that you would like to have

them that at an agreed upon date you can all measure how

as many team members involved as possible (team can mean

committed and successful you have all been, and how you

your office, department, floor etc).

can improve as well as sustain the new behaviours.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015



Green Goodwill Ambassador as Leader Your preparation requires that you Familiarise yourself with all Info Sheet/FAQS on: ◆ Green Goodwill Campaign

◆ Green Goodwill Ambassador and the Pledge

Suggested process

◆ Green Goodwill Charter ◆ The Action Plan


Show them the Green Goodwill Ambassador’s Pledge

and inform them that you are going to sign it in their presence. 1

Before April 20:

Inform your manager of the Green

Goodwill Campaign and of the Green Goodwill Charter by sharing the Info Sheet/FAQs with him/her. 2

Ask your manager who (s)he suggests should sign the

Charter. Inform him/her that it can be signed by an executive or by a team leader ie. the Green Goodwill Ambassador. 3

If (s)he for, some reason, does not wish to have a Charter,

inform him/her that you would still like to drive the GOW Green Goodwill Campaign. 4

If there is no objection, have a meeting with your team

and inform them of campaign, and that you would like to have as many team members involved as possible (team can mean your office, department, floor etc)

Display it where appropriate. If the Charter has been signed, display this one as well. 6

Inform them of the benefits of the Green Goodwill

Campaign in terms of “doing good” for the environment whilst “doing good” for the office budget. 7

Show and share with your team the Green Goodwill

Campaign’s Action Plan which is supplied by GOW. 8 Together with them tailor-make the Action Plan to suit your team and office goals i.e. Edit each column where it applies to you (if need be), and fill in the columns where your specific team’s details are required. 9

Ensure everyone has an electronic copy of the final

version of the Action Plan.

The Green Goodwill Action Plan The Action Plan offers an easy structure for Green Goodwill Ambassadors to follow and saves everyone a huge amount of time in pin-pointing what can be done in terms of eco-friendly behaviours and setting out goals. In essence, the beauty of the Action Plan is that it is an enabling and dynamic platform for workplace individuals and teams to exchange views, and debate key practices. The Action Plan ultimately encouraging consensus and promoting best practice in eco-friendly behaviours. Note: In compiling the Action Plan, GOW used many sources and references to assist it in its content.

To get your copy of the Action Plan please email us on gow@greenofficeweek.co.za careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

The Green Goodwill Charter Preamble This Charter is a call to action for individuals and teams in our organisation to work together and demonstrate involvement in tackling waste, reducing our carbon footprint and supporting green behaviours and actions which protect key resources, amongst others, energy and water.

The Commitments As a Signatory to this Charter our organisation commits to: Adopting more cohesive and smarter approaches to buying and using office supplies, office equipment and all forms of transport and delivery. Identifying appropriate methods for the goals of implementation of behaviours that: Reduce waste, encourage re-use and recycling, motivate buying-green and see a reduction in carbon emissions wherever applicable. Fostering collaboration and sharing practices with one another in order to achieve behavioural changes. Ensuring that all involved understand that it is not just about being eco-friendly as an end, but also as a means to add our bit towards protecting the planet from further stress on its resources.

The Values As a signatory to this Charter we endeavour to create and embed a culture of: Respect Responsibility Resoluteness

Organisation: Date:

The Green Goodwill Ambassador's

PLEDGE As the Green Goodwill Ambassador I hereby pledge to: Care for the sustainability of my office, help the environment and protect planet Earth by adhering to the principles of: Reducing Re-using Recycling and Replenishing Build goodwill, capacity and preparedness in my office to adopt eco-efficient practices which minimise our environmental footprint through sustainable use and management of resources including water, energy, materials, and equipment . In fulfilment of the above, I hereby promise to do my best in: Identifying better and more appropriate methods of working eco-efficiently. Mobilising my office colleagues to support endeavours which result in smarter approaches to buying and using supplies and equipment, as well as in making more savvy choices regarding transport and delivery methods in order to reduce pollution. Engaging with suppliers, internally and externally, to support me with products, services and deliveries which have eco-friendly qualities and credentials. Keeping open communication with management regarding innovative ‘green” thinking or behaviours which positively impact both on the office’s budget as well as the organisation’s bottomline. Embracing sustainability goals, which may already be in place, taking into account our environmental risks, responsibilities and organisational capability.

Name: Signature: Date:


meet a member


Can we start with a little background information? Where are you from?

I was born and bred in a town (“Location”) called Tembisa. I was raised in a family of 6, a mom, dad and 3 sibling’s, two brothers and one sister. I am a proud mom of 3, two girls and one boy. I’m a highly driven individual with extensive management experience acquired principally in the aviation sector. Following completion of my Gap year in the USA and being self-employed for 4 years, I ventured into administration where I have been for the past 7 years and counting.


How and why did you become Administrative professional?



Being a customer orientated individual and loving to provide excellent service, and organising and projects being my strong points I was presented with an opportunity to become a PA - once I found my feet I did not regret this decision. As I always say “Nothing in this world happens by chance”.

We welcome Grace To PAFSA


Briefly, describe a typical day at your office?

As a Personal Assistant your day is never boring. As the boss’s “right hand” and his eyes and ears, I make up for gaps in the boss’s knowledge and any memory lapses. As the gatekeeper and confidante to my boss I also ensure that he remains accessible whilst guarding his time. As most PAs, I am kept busy by: •

Reading, monitoring and responding to emails

Answering calls and handling queries

Grace Ndaba from RMB has been invited to join the PAFSA’s Forum Presidents Committee.

Preparing correspondence

Liaising with staff, clients

Managing the electronic diary, booking meetings

Organising travel and preparing complex travel itineraries

Planning, organising and managing events, managing a budget

We get to know her better...

Conducting research on the internet

Writing reports, executive summaries and newsletters

Preparing presentations

Managing and reviewing filing and office systems

Updating websites

Sourcing and ordering stationery and office equipment

Managing projects.

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


7 8

How do you relax and de-tress?


What inspires and motivates you? I have 5 key factors that motivate and help keep me inspired.

Achievement: I like challenging tasks, clear goals, and specific measures of success. Interaction: Being in the service industry for over 10 years I can confirm that I am a “people person”, who enjoys frequent and friendly interaction with others. Creativity: Having being once self-employed I am also motivated by creativity and value opportunities to innovate. Leadership: I like being put in charge of projects. Taking ownership! Service: The opportunity to help others or make the world a better place always makes me happy. Problem Solving: Tackling complex and challenging problems brings a smile to me daily.


What have been the highlights of your career so far and why?

My greatest achievement so far in my career is having been voted into and appointed Chairperson of the PA’s at RMB last year. The fact that I was in the bank for less than a year and people identified the light that I was carrying inside me, and believed that I can bring progress, life and enjoyment back in the RMBSC forum was an honour. That brought belief and life back into the forum as the people had anticipated and there is still more to come. My mom always says to me “Be like the fountain that overflows, not like the cistern that merely contains.” I am currently working towards completing my degree with UNISA in financial management, and also doing a course on Aromatherapy.


Who has had the most influence in your life? Mentor? Siza Mzimela: Former CEO for SAA and SA Express.

My mom: as a successful business woman and providing brilliant family support.

A wise man once said “You have two choices, to control your mind or to let your mind control you.” I am an avid reader, I love the ocean and nature (not as in camping), I love going on Game Drives. That for me is the epitome of relaxation. What gives ‘light ‘to your life? To your being?

My kids, being alive, life and the Grace of God. A writer once wrote “The two hardest tests on the spiritual road are the patience to wait for the right moment and the courage not to be disappointed with what we encounter.” Oprah Winfrey could not have said it any better than: “I’ve come to believe that each of us has a personal calling that’s as unique as a fingerprint – and that the best way to succeed is to discover what you love and then find a way to offer it to others in the form of service, working hard, and also allowing the energy of the universe to lead you.” This is what gives “Light to my life in a nutshell”


What is the most challenging or daring thing you have ever done? Why?

Starting my own business and having it not take off to the sky as planned. With that journey I learned that life is always a matter of waiting for the right moment to act. Climbing The Great Wall of China in Beijing was also an experience beyond explanation. Climbing part of it was exhausting and exhilarating and the views vast and far. I wish I were more eloquent to describe the experience! Just imagining the labour and suffering that was endured to make this astounding and protective wall that you can see from out of space is amazing! Seeing a ‘wall’ of this magnitude - that has survived this long - is something rare and I am fortunate to have experienced it. I am afraid of heights and having climbed and survived it could not have happened at a better time in my life. What I learned from there was turning the word Impossible to I am possible.

For more info visit www.pafsa.co.za

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


www.mockana.co.za careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015

PAFSA news


PAFSA news beyond iyotsa 2014 will go down in history as the year a great tribute was paid to the secretarial profession.


South African initiative, founded by PAFSA, the year 2014 was celebrated across the globe as many organisations and PAs/Admin Assistants rose to the occasion and ensured the profession was given the spotlight it deserved. PAFSA continues committed to its international footprint – and friends worldwide – and as such has added the words and beyond to its IYOTSA brand. Please visit our Facebook page – IYOTSA – and you will see the byline: IYOTSA and Beyond In 2015, IYOTSA has decided to align itself to the UN’s International Year of Light.

A world without light is a world without life! Why?

last year’s work easily by adding words associated with light to their workshops, conferences, celebratory events and newsletters. Words such as: sparkle, illuminate, shine, spotlight, radiate, brilliant, glow, beam, bright, ablaze, dazzle, brighten etc Famous quotes on the subject of Light: We cannot hold a torch to light another’s path without brightening our own. (Ben Sweetland) We are each gifted in a unique and important way. It is our privilege and our adventure to discover our own special light. (Evelyn Dunbar)

For example, for giving direction: Show the way; set the course; steer; clear the path; on the right track; follow the road; give a new direction; guidance. A world without light is a world without life! A profession without being in the light, is a profession unseen, unnoticed, unrecognised! Out of sight is out of mind.

In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary. (Aaron Rose)

So let’s commit, together, to keep the secretarial/admin profession in the light!

“As we work to create light for others, we naturally light our own way.” (Mary Anne Radmacher)

At PAFSA’s annual Inter-Committee Convention (ICC) held in March the theme was: “Give Light and people will find the way”.

The International Year of Light lends itself beautifully to the notion of continuing with putting a ‘spotlight’ on the PA/admin professional role and career.

“No one lights a lamp in order to hide it behind the door: the purpose of light is to create more light, to open people’s eyes, to reveal the marvels around.” (Paulo Coelho)

We believe that adopting and adapting this theme of “light” gives enormous scope for creativity!

“Nothing can dim the light that shines from within.” (Maya Angelou)

Secretarial organisations can build on

For example, for energy: Vitality, vigour, life, liveliness, spirit, fire, passion, power, stamina, might, enthusiasm, zest, vibrancy, exuberance.

Light also denotes energy and giving direction!

We have set our direction for PAFSA’s beyond Iyotsa as one of giving light to the secretarial community. Follow us on social media and on our website to see how this will roll out. Visit www.pafsa.co.za

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


last page

Test your

Wits and have Fun Children aged between 4 and 6 can solve this problem in less than 5 minutes. Can you? 8898 = 7 4566 = 2 1203 = 1 2313 = 0 4566 = 2 5464 = 1 7774 = 0 1003 = 2 9856 = 4 9955 = 2 1886 = 5 1231 = 0 8764 = 3


4500 = ?


Can you find a seven letter word such that:

The first two letters are a man. The first three letters are a woman. The first four letters are a great man. The whole is a great woman. Which is the correct to way to say, the following:? “The yolk of the egg is white” or “The yolk of the egg are white?”



The red house is on one side and the blue is on the other, where is the white house?

Answers Brainteaser 1 - The answer is 2. For each number count the number of circles present in the letters. Adult brains tend see what the numbers represent, an equation, and so we look for a mathematical solution. Those not yet trained to recognise the sequence as an equation do not limit their search for a solution and begin to evaluate the pattern visually. Brainteaser 2 - Heroine Brainteaser 3 - Neither. Egg yolks are yellow. Brainteaser 4 - In Washington DC

careersuccess magazine issue 1 2015


T. 011 668 3000 F. 011 668 3060

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Careersuccess Magazine issue 1 2015  

A magazine for PAs, secretaries and office managers

Careersuccess Magazine issue 1 2015  

A magazine for PAs, secretaries and office managers


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