As an Event Assistant my main responsibility is to provide administrative support and customer service for events in lower mainland, national and international locations. This entails, continuously to be in contact with various alumni from different demographics and be the point of contact. My position also necessitates me to work in conjunction with 5 events managers who have different working styles. Working on multiple events at the same time with similar deadlines there is grave need to develop prioritizing skills and change them at a moment’s notice if need arises.
The most impeding challenge I face in this position is to be aware of the future needs of the managers on different events and be able to strategically allocate the necessary resources. Added to this is the fact that there are many events in different stages of execution and planning and to keep a tab on the varied deadlines is at times quite taxing and might lead to slip ups if everything is not double checked which makes all the process more time consuming. A good hold on transactive and prospective memory can help elude these challenges and make multiple event management a much more efficient process.
Taking perspective is important for effective communication, especially in an office setting where 2 assistants are serving 5 event managers. The combination of the knowledge held by each team member and the comprehension of what expertise each member has is termed is Transactive memory (Gockel and Brauner, 2013; Prichard and Ashleigh, 2007). It is a cognitive state (Gockel and Brauner, 2013) where knowledge about what the teammates know can make a task much more efficient. An increase in transactive memory should enable a very interdependent team like ours to work much more efficiently, as the managers are the ones that are present on site and the assistants have to foresee any needs from their perspective for both national and international events.
The strategy to enhance efficiency is to increase transactive memory which can be done by taking another’s perspective and increasing team skills by enabling a team to effectively allocate information between members and facilitate access during task performance. An individual can easily alternate focus between self (egocentrism) and other (perspective taking); and the knowledge acquired about another person is more accurate when the cognitive focus is directed towards them (Gockel and Brauner, 2013). Perspective taking makes an individual aware of the differences in expertise within the team members, thereby increasing awareness and then resolution of situations; where ones expectations about an event are not met; resulting in a prediction-outcome conflict (Gockel and Brauner, 2013); that is the congruence of the expectations of the manager with the prediction of the assistant. These shared knowledge bases (eg: awareness of all the jargons involved) also make it easier to reference them in conversations (team meeting)....