Last week I was asked by our Regional Human Resource Administrator (i.e. “Office Manager”) if I would be willing to take part in a focus group on office services.
Always looking for an excuse to get away from my desk, I whole heartedly agreed and waited for the email with all the “fun” details.
Being a paralegal, naturally I assumed I would be grouped with the staff – the norm in my office. Imagine the look of shock on my face when I read the email advising that I was in the attorney group instead. Ugh.
Being a mature, para professional, immediately I tried to think of a way to get out of the focus group. Sitting with attorneys, most of which were partners, just did not seem like a good time.
Finally, after exhausting all options, I decided to suck it up and go to the damn group at 11am.
I took a seat in the back and prepared myself to be bored.
Bob, the focus group leader, introduced himself and explained a little bit about why we were there before starting the discussion on the basic functions of “office services” (i.e. the mailroom).
We took turns giving our opinions on faxes, document scanning (too many steps on the copiers), mail delivery, food services (adequate depending on where food is ordered from but more quality control is needed for expired beverages) and conference rooms.
Considering the group was made up of attorneys, we were all in agreement on most things. However, that soon changed when the topic of office supplies came up.
I don’t remember who brought up office supplies but it was a HOT topic in my group. Everyone had very strong opinions on brand, style, type and color.
Suddenly the room was alive with talk about how blue ink is better than black (I totally disagree with this); ball point pens are not as “fast” as a roller ball pen; Dixon Ticonderoga No. 2 pencils and Paper Mate medium point pens are standard issue in the firm’s offices throughout the country (with the exception of our Princeton office); when attorneys from other offices visit Princeton, they “borrow” pens from our mailroom before leaving; imitation Post-it Brand sticky notes pale in comparison to the original and fall off of exhibits; and lastly, the return of Bic Wit-out (in a bottle) is a necessity.
Funny how something as little and insignificant as a pen can “unite” a room.
For now, I will keep a close eye on my Paper Mate fine point black pens and my Bic Matic Grip mechanical pencils as well as my many Post-it notes in all sizes and colors – shhhh I have stash hidden in my desk.
Enjoy your Wednesday 🙂