In a busy environment with things that change literally every minute, Office Managers at Mike’s Auto Body must wear a lot of different hats to succeed. They need to lead by example and set a high standard for the front office as well as adhering to all of the company’s policies. In addition, they have to be patient and compassionate with every customer they interact with, especially after they’ve experienced the trauma associated with a car accident.
At Mike’s Auto Body, the standard path to becoming an Office Manager at any of the company’s 15 locations starts after working as a Customer Service Representative (CSR) for several years. In this position, future potential Office Managers are able to learn many of the same skills that they will be able to use once they enter management.
Compliance and Property Manager Jennifer Harriman started out as a CSR and later became an Office Manager at Mike’s, so she knows precisely what it takes to achieve excellence in both positions. “When a CSR shows that they are ready to move up, we start working with them right away, so that they’ll be prepared when they became an Office Manager,” she said. “It usually takes 3-5 years from being a low-level CSR to becoming an established Office Manager.”
Supervising the front office personnel is only the beginning when it comes to being an efficient Office Manager, Harriman explained. “It might look easy, but it’s hard work and you have to be highly organized to do it correctly. As an Office Manager, you work with everyone within the company as well as the customers, vendors and insurance partners. You are responsible for all of store’s paperwork and interact with Human Resources, so you have to be a leader and a team player while also being a diplomat, when needed.”
Kristen Fedje is the Office Manager at the Mike’s Auto Body location in Brentwood. She started working for the company back in 2011 as a CSR and became a full-fledged Office Manager two years ago. She was trained by Harriman initially as a CSR and then helped her again as she moved up into her current role.
“As a CSR, I learned that you have to multi-task and roll with it when things change,” Fedje said. “You have to be people-oriented, because you will be working with all kinds of different individuals. If the customers are stressed, you have to figure out a way to ease the situation and turn it around, in some cases. You have to work quickly, because there’s always a lot going on all the time here and you never know what’s going to happen next.”
Being an Office Manager is surely challenging, but it’s also extremely satisfying, Fedje said. “It’s a great job and working for an amazing family like the Roses is special. They reward good work and do everything they can to set us up for success–it’s definitely a team effort and you can see it in action here every day.”
If you’re interested in applying for a CSR position with the idea of hopefully one day becoming an Office Manager, Mike’s Auto Body has some current openings, so contact us through Facebook or at our website by clicking on this link: