A Milestone to Remember: Britta Knott Marks 40 Years with Weiss
At a time when few American workers reach even one decade with a single company, Britta Knott’s 40 years with Weiss is, to say the least, exceptional. But then Britta has always been an exceptional employee, one whose contributions have been key to the firm from the day she walked in to her ongoing tenure as our Administrative Manager. So what makes one of Weiss’s longest tenured employees come back day after day, year after year? To find out, we sat down with Britta recently to reflect on her career at Weiss.
Why did you apply for your first job at Weiss?
In 1982, I was working towards my Associate’s in Office Systems Technology at Oakton Community College. I was in my last semester of the program, and one of the graduation requirements was an internship credit. I was living in Glenview at the time, and saw that Weiss was hiring for a Typist position who knew how to use a word processor. So I applied, got hired, and haven’t looked back since.
What do you remember from your first day on the job?
In those days, the associates at the firm were still handwriting all of the clients’ tax returns, financial statements, and correspondence so I was tasked with transferring the information to the typewriter and word processor. Word processors were considered new technology at the time, and the associates (who were accustomed only to typewriters) were amazed that I could make edits without having to change the sheet of paper and start over again. It’s funny to think about how far office technology has come since then.
How has your job changed over the years?
Once computers replaced word processors, my basic tasks became more efficient and I had time to take on more responsibilities. Little by little, as technology got better and freed up my time, I got involved with tax return processing, recruiting, marketing, file management, and event planning. I’ve always been willing to learn how to do something new. After 20 years, I became the Administrative supervisor due to my experience and was able to delegate tasks and train new administrative staff members on the various company processes.
What has been your biggest achievement?
There are a few moments that come to mind. I really enjoyed planning the firm’s 50th Anniversary party – that was an important moment in the company’s history. In 2004, we moved from Northfield to Glenview, and I had a key role in planning the logistics of the move. I’ve also enjoyed my unofficial role of being the morale booster around the office.
What’s your favorite part of the job?
I enjoy being a hands-on supervisor. I delegate tasks to others, but I’m always willing and able to jump in and give a hand to whoever needs it. I also appreciate being a mentor to new staff members and being the go-to person that new associates come to when they have a question about a process or procedure.
What are some of your favorite memories of the last 40 years?
I really like planning company events because I think being together as a group in a non-work setting is fantastic for camaraderie and getting to know one another better. I’ve planned many events including pre-tax season parties, summer outings, volunteer opportunities, and in-house morale-boosting activities. One of my favorites was a ziplining outing a few years ago in Lake Geneva, which was a lot of fun.
What words of wisdom would you share with someone just starting their career at Weiss?
Never be afraid of asking questions! In every job, there’s so much to learn, and that can get overwhelming. One of the best things about Weiss is that everyone who works here is extremely courteous and willing to take the time to help a new staff member in need.
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