I was an Executive Assistant for years prior to becoming a Financial Consultant. I worked directly for the CEOs of large companies. I noticed professionalism and lack of it in the workplace. After training my own Administrative Assistant. Here are my best insider tips for the newly hired Administrative Professional:
- Work like you own the company. Take pride in your work and act like an owner. While in the position if you discover a process that could be completed in a more efficient manner, speak up and ask for permission to change the procedure. I found that most Administrative procedures were put in place from someone who has never been in that position and is most likely not the most efficient way to complete a task. Ask yourself, if I owned the company, how would I accomplish XYZ?
- My book club read the book “Getting Things Done: the art of stress-free productivity,” by David Allen. I believe this book should be a requirement for the Administrative Professional. This is one of the most valuable tools one can have in business.
- Make good use of a calendar (digital or paper). At the beginning of the day, identify the top 5 things that need to get completed and schedule them in the calendar. My personal suggestion is to complete them first thing, unless they are time sensitive and have to be completed at a certain time. Regardless, they need to be on the calendar. In addition, schedule all breaks, lunch periods, etc. into the calendar so you can have a clear picture of exactly how much time you must have to complete your daily tasks. Good and open communication with your supervisor is a key component.
- Always be learning. Even if your company does not offer their own version of Administrative Training, seek online courses, instructional books, etc. in your field. This will insure you are always at the top of your game. This can come in handy when you ask for a raise. You can share the extracurricular learning you have done on your own time. If it is costly, ask your employer to pay for it.
- Drop your “baggage” at the door. Don’t bring your personal life to work. Keep you work relationships positive and professional. Let your friends and family know that if they need you, they can reach you on your lunch hour or you will call them on your break. I feel so much time is wasted because people do not set boundaries with their friends and family. Bonus: No personal social media during work hours!! I hope this information helps with your project.
- Show up to work dressed to impress. Waiting until you get to the office to put on make-up, fix hair, eat your breakfast, etc. is a sign that you are sloppy and do not have your personal life in order. You may think that no one notices, but they do.
- Social Media: This is a relatively new topic when it comes to the workplace. Social Media can be used wisely. I’ll start with what not to do under any circumstances:
- Do not air your dirty laundry on SM. Your supervisor and those whom you work with are looking.
- Do not use SM during working hours, unless it is in your job description to do so.
- Do not post pictures of your drinking/smoking or other questionable “off work” activities. Keep it professional.
What to do:
- Take a picture of you standing in front of your company sign and say something positive about it. For instance, did you know my company does XYZ? #lovemynewjob
When someone gets promoted within your company, say something nice about them with all the appropriate tags.
- If your company appears in the news in a positive way, share it out with a comment from you.
- These positive Social Media activities will get you noticed, and you will be seen as a “team player.”
- Check company policy on Social Media to be sure you are working within their guidelines.
- Know what your supervisor(s) like. How do they take their coffee? What kind of breakfast treats do they like? What is their favorite cake at birthday time? If you greet clients, learn their likes as well. This goes a long way and can make you invaluable.