Ask Dr. Job’s chief contributor, Sandra Pesmen, is a member of the Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame and author of “DR. JOB’s Complete Career Guide.”

Winner of several journalism awards, Pesmen is a graduate of the University of Illinois Media College at Urbana, and is listed in several Who’s Who editions. She also has been Corporate Features Editor of Crain Communications Inc., founding Features Editor of Crain’s Chicago Business and a reporter/features writer for The Chicago Daily News.

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Ask DR.JOB Q and A: Help for Type That Can't Type

(Q1) I'M AN EXECUTIVE THAT CAN'T TYPE! I always had administrative assistants who took my dictation or notes and typed them into letters, proposals and memos. Later, I began to "hunt and peck" notes on the new computers but always sent them to those assistants to turn into professional form. Now I've semi-retired, work from home and am handicapped by being unable to turn out professional letters, memos and proposals for new business. I tried going to the library to use the computers with help from librarians, but it isn't enough. I also don't understand how to "surf the web" for important background information. My people did that for me too. Do I hire someone to work in my home office?

(A) YOUR MOST OBVIOUS OPTION IS TO LEARN TO TYPE. It's not rocket science, and you can either take a typing course at a local school or have a grandchild set you up with an online typing course. It's like learning any new skill: you must: practice, practice, and practice. Failing that, you can go to a business center at one of many stores that provide them, such as Staples, Office Max, or KINKO's. Their staffs of bright, young techies are not judgmental and will do everything your assistants did, such as copying, scanning, stapling, putting pages into folders. If you still need a typist, hire one if them to work a few hours independently in your home office, or on the premises. 

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