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Page Title: Correspondence and Directives
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special talents or preferences. A good supervisor always finds  out  what  each  person  likes  to  do  well  enough  to put extra effort into it. You cannot make all assignments on this basis, particularly when manning levels and office  workload  override  individual  desires.  However, it does pay dividends in quantity and quality of work and better office morale if individuals are able to work at some of the tasks they do and like better than others. Since transfers, leave, temporary additional duty, or hospitalization  will  cause  changes  of  personnel  within your  office,  rotate  your  subordinates  in  the  various  jobs occasionally. By doing this you will take the first step in preventing office routine from breaking down when a key person is absent and be able to give each individual an insight into how each task contributes to the overall function of the office. Prepare for the unexpected by training your people to replace each other and to replace you. One  method  to  make  sure  individuals  clearly understand their job assignments is to establish those assignments  in  writing. By   establishing   job assignments for each desk in your office, you will make sure  each  individual  is  fully  aware  of  his  or  her responsibilities  and  you  will  provide  for  a  smooth  and orderly transition when they are relieved or rotated to other assignments. It also will help you make sure those tasks that are done once a month are not forgotten. A formal memo is not necessary to set up the requirements of a job. Just make a list on the desk leaf or directly in front of the desk where the work is done. You should keep a copy of the list so you can refer to it as necessary. When you assign duties, give similar or related tasks to the same person. Proper combination of duties speeds up  operations  by  cutting  out  wasted  motion  and improving accuracy. Divide the workload as fairly as possible. An  uneven  workload  lowers  morale  and creates  bottlenecks  that  decrease  office  productivity. CORRESPONDENCE AND DIRECTIVES In chapter 1 you were given instruction on how to write  the  Navy’s  various  forms  of  correspondence.  As the senior LN, you will be handling them in a much different way. One of your primary duties as an office supervisor   is   to   control   the   correspondence   and directives that your office deals with in its normal daily routine.  Your  responsibility  is  to  handle  and  route  all incoming and outgoing correspondence and to make sure all directives of a legal nature are kept current and prepared following command policy. It will be up to you  to  determine  which  correspondence  has  the  highest priority and how to route it to each worker so there is a smooth  coordination  of  work  in  your  office. Knowing  exactly  what  to  do  with  incoming correspondence is important to the efficient operation of your office and command. You must be sure you have set  up  a  system  of  routing  correspondence  to  your workers for action that considers the priority with which the action is taken. The system you set up must also allow for your subordinates to understand not only the content  of  the  correspondence  but  the  timeliness  with which they should act on it. A correspondence read file and  an  action  message  board  are  two  commonly  used routing systems for making sure workers read and initial appropriate  action  items.    It is also important that all your personnel are familiar with the different types of naval correspondence and directives as covered by the Correspondence Manual and the Directives Issuance System  Manual. TRAINING Avery important aspect of your role as a supervisor is to make sure you maintain a comprehensive training program. The primary goal of any training given to your subordinates is to improve their efficiency on the job plus  enhance  their  advancement  opportunities.  A formal  training  program  intended  to  ready  your personnel   for   advancement   should   be   based   on occupational    standards. Since   advancement examinations   are   written   based   on   occupational standards established for each rating, any training received  within  the  occupational  standards  guidelines benefits   all   concerned.   Another   reason   for comprehensive  training,  especially  for  those  LNs  who are new to the rating, is to indoctrinate them as soon as possible to the many facets of the rating. When an NLSO or SJA office receives new LNs recently out of school,   the   new   LNs   possess   only   the   basic administrative tools. It will take some time for these LNs  to  experience  the  many  phases  of  the  rating. Usually  one  tour  is  not  enough  to  do  the  job.  The importance  of  a  sound  training  program  cannot  be overemphasized. Many sources are available to you when putting your training program together. Good guidelines for selecting  and  organizing  your  subject  matter  are contained in Military Requirements for PO 3 & 2. Its contents are extremely helpful at guiding you through the training development process and should result in a program that will meet the needs of your subordinates as well as the LN community as a whole. 14-3

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