Ja Rule once crooned romantically, "Where would I be without you?" Though one should (almost) never become romantically involved with the support staff, lawyers, associates especially, often maintain a dependent and (almost) intimate relationship with that person. You rely upon your administrative professional --that's a P.C. term for secretary or paralegal -- for everything from proofreading to research to remembering to send flowers on your mother's birthday.
This Wednesday is the official day for showing thanks to those people in your life that make your job easier. And much like your significant other won't remind you about that anniversary, your admin (probably) isn't going to remind you about his special day either. A few words of thanks isn't enough -- this is the day for the big, grand, gesture. Here are a few ideas:
Okay, it's a bit overdone. But heck, it's already almost noon (or 3:00 p.m. in New York). Call your local florist and get those flowers and chocolates over here quick!
2. Happy Hour
This is much simpler, though last-minute planning might mean that your staff has plans. Perhaps announce a happy hour for Friday afternoon? Just remember, too many happy hour cocktails has led to a rendezvous or two. So easy does it.
3. Bagels and Coffee
Though it's long past breakfast time, and today is Administrative Professionals Day, it's also Administrative Professionals week. Yeah, your momma gets one day, but your secretary gets the whole freaking week. If you work in a large firm, and if you share support staff with others, this is a great idea to show thanks to the entire bunch without buying $1,000 worth of flowers.
4. The Day Off
Can you survive for 24 hours without your assistant's assistance? If so, consider giving her a paid day off this week. It'll recharge her batteries for the upcoming work week, show your appreciation, and make it appear as if you didn't forget this made up holiday.
5. Gift Certificates and Other Bribery
These are easy, and mostly useful. If you know your secretary or paralegal well, choose something related to their interests (such as a craft store gift card). Otherwise, go for a general retailer, like Amazon. Just don't give obscure gift cards to niche stores or those annoying prepaid Visa cards that don't work anywhere.
Editor's note, April 26, 2016: This post was first published in April, 2013. It has since been updated.
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