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Ask Eula Mae: Want to Work Fast

Posted By NALS Editorial + Marketing Board, Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Ask Eula Mae: Fast WorkingDear Eula Mae:


I’ve been in the legal employment force for a few years now. My previous position as a data processor/typist was all about production and speed and it is a little different now that I’m a legal assistant.  I want so much to do my job fast but I’m having to go back and correct little things almost daily. I get frustrated by handling the same documents over and over. This really slows down the process and I’m sure my boss is not happy about having to look at these documents over and over too. I don’t want him to think he made a mistake in hiring me for this job. I want to do well as a legal secretary and need advice on this.


Want to be Speedy

Dear Speedy:


It seems like everything in the world today is all about speed; however, in a legal office, it is more important for the work to be exactly correct. The rhythm of the legal assistant’s job is different from a production position like a typist.  The legal assistant is required to take exceptional care in handling clients’ information.  This means a lot of reading and proofreading which takes time.  The work needs to be perfect before it leaves the office. 


My best advice to you is to be sure you have the appropriate resources (grammar books and websites marked) and skills (which can be developed) in order for you to do the best job that you can.  At the desk, a legal assistant’s job is about dependability and accuracy.  After you type some documents, take a moment to occupy your mind a different way—take a short walk around the office, go get a cup of coffee, do some copying or filing—anything that is different than what you just typed.  Then come back to the document and read it backwards from the end of the document to the top.  There is something about how the brain works when doing this that will help you spot any mistakes.  But before you turn the work in to the boss for signature, try reading it out loud (silently of course) one more time to look for any other corrections needed.


You can learn to slow down in the office with the goal of having the best outcome possible in your work.  It will take you a little effort to do this, but you will be very happy with the results and your boss will notice the improvement too. 

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