National Initiative Launches April 2nd in Celebration of Administrative Professionals Week

April 02 12:06 2015

Speak Up! Pledge campaign logo
Workplace/career coach and former executive assistant to Olympia Dukakis, Bonnie Low-Kramen is launching the Speak Up! Pledge to empower both assistants and managers to develop healthy, positive relationships in the workplace. Kicking off April 2nd, in celebration of Administrative Professionals Week, the goal of this national movement is to forge better communication between an assistant and her/his manager.

Edison, New Jersey – April 2, 2015 – Harassed by your boss? Bullied by a co-worker? Afraid to ask for a raise? Feel undervalued? All too familiar with these dynamics, workplace/career coach and former executive assistant to Olympia Dukakis, Bonnie Low-Kramen is launching the Speak Up! Pledge to empower both assistants and managers to develop healthy, positive relationships in the workplace. Kicking off April 2nd, in celebration of Administrative Professionals Week, the goal of this national movement is to forge better communication between an assistant and her/his manager.

With one million pledges expected by Labor Day 2015, the Speak Up! Pledge is a starting point toward encouraging an assistant to approach his or her manager professionally and respectfully with questions, ideas, and concerns and “speak up” for what change/ improvement she/ he wants in the business environment. To participate, an assistant can go online at SpeakUpPledge.com, download and sign the digital pledge and frame the certificate. “The pledge is a dedicated way for the assistant to make a commitment to her/himself to talk about a workplace issue and propel dialogue, instead of keeping silent,” Low-Kramen says. In workshops she conducts around the world, she has heard first-hand that the issue of not speaking up is a very real problem – the #1 challenge in the workplace. Fear of losing a job, fear of being told “no,” afraid of being perceived as a troublemaker, fear of being right or wrong – are just a few of the reasons why an assistant may feel compelled to stay quiet, according to Low-Kramen.

The SpeakUpPledge.com web site also has a section in which a manager can participate and pledge his/her openness and commitment to positive communication within the office or team. The initiative is being promoted via social media channels. An assistant can take a ‘selfie’ of him/herself, or with other assistants or with his/ her manager and send photos to Instagram with the hashtag (#) SpeakUpPledge. Low-Kramen is encouraging assistants and managers to share the pledge via social media and word-of-mouth in an effort to generate awareness.

Based on her own personal experience coaching thousands of assistants around the world, receiving personal calls and emails daily, Low-Kramen has observed that that many assistants feel discouraged, afraid and too intimidated to discuss a variety of workplace issues. Low-Kramen says, “From salary negotiation, a well-deserved day-off or a promotion, to being bullied or being sexually harassed, there is no shortage of difficult issues at work. Bullying, for example, is a silent epidemic that affects over 65% of assistants at least once in their careers. Not dealing appropriately with these issues is self-sabotage.”

Low-Kramen believes that strong, productive, mutually respectful, and highly profitable relationships between assistants and managers will only come about when communication pathways are opened and when the “silence is broken.” She emphasizes that when fear or intimidation is an obstacle, growth cannot be achieved.

The Speak Up! Pledge is meant to spur realistic and instantly actionable solutions for success in a demanding workplace. The bottom line is that when an assistant and a manager do not have an honest and open line of communication and there is not a real effort in resolving issues, it creates an unhealthy workplace – low morale, absenteeism and lower productivity — not to mention the emotional and physical toll it can take. “I have heard from hundreds of assistants who have left their jobs to take another one without ever talking to their bullying manager. That’s a lose/lose situation. Improvement and a better, more productive work environment can only happen when we start the conversation – when we break the silence.”

Dr. Laura Crawshaw, author of The Boss Whisperer and Taming the Abrasive Manager: How to End Unnecessary Roughness in the Workplace could not agree more: “I support the Speak Up! Pledge because it’s not until people speak up that we can get educated and change.”

Press Contact Karen Parziale at Karen@360degreespr.com, 201.927.8536

 

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Company Name: 360 Degrees PR
Contact Person: Karen Parziale
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Phone: 201-927-8536
Address:214 Willow Ave., Studio 2B
City: Hoboken
State: New Jersey
Country: United States
Website: SpeakUpPledge.com

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