If you're looking for some points on what makes a good assistant, then you have landed at the right story. Yes, for being a good assistant, skills are necessary, but there are some personal attributes which can take you ahead in your career...
To know what makes a good executive assistant, it's necessary that you first know the basic job responsibilities of an executive assistant. An executive assistant is like an administrative assistant, but with more responsibilities and work. Assistants today don't just pick up phones and take appointments, they do much more. Executive assistants are professionals who work under a management director or CEO or Chairman of the company.
The most important thing to remember when you are an executive assistant is that appearance is everything. You are one of the ambassadors of the company and it is a must that you are always dressed well and look presentable in front of your boss and other members of the company. This means you would always have to wear formal attire and clothes should always be ironed and of a good label.
Excellent communications skills and knowledge of computers is a must. You are the boss' voice and face for the thousands of employees working for the company.
Since you are working at the management level, it's important that you do all your work in an organized manner and be very quick, and understand how important an executive assistant's job is in a company.
How to be a Good Executive Assistant
Now that you know what are the prime duties of an executive assistant, let's talk about the qualities which will keep you up in the game.
Keeping Things Private
One of the main things that every executive assistant has to face is the jealousy factor which he/she gets from every employee working in the company. If you don't feel that jealousy anywhere around you, trust me; you are not doing your job right.
Handling the post of an executive assistant signifies that you are working for people right at the management level and this means that you have more knowledge about the things that everyone doesn't.
Your boss expects you to be discreet about the confidential information regarding the company matters. This means that you are not a part of the office gossip gang and if you want to keep your job then don't be.
Be in Darkness
An executive assistant is no less than a private detective. He/she has to handle the incoming correspondence of the company and it's very necessary that they do it pretty neatly without anyone knowing it.
It's your job to know as to who the person is and how much he/she should know. Make sure you keep your boss away from petty problems which you know to solve. The boss has to deal with important matters regarding the company and it's generally a good idea to spare him from small issues.
However, when you feel that the matter is too huge and should be addressed to him/her please let him/her know. While you're handling the job you would also have the authority to pass the calls to his cabin.
Make sure you only pass important calls and handle calls yourself which are made for commercial purposes. The sales people are the ones who will always pressure you, don't let them push you around. A good idea is to ask your boss whose calls is he/she expecting and whose calls shouldn't be passed along.
Have Some Guts
Show some capability as an assistant because you know your boss itinerary more than he/she knows it. Don't be afraid of telling your superior what needs to be done and don't be sensitive about saying it. Have a strong voice and advice him/her with a confident face.
You know your job more than anyone because you schedule the meetings, you prioritize his/her tasks, so you know which task deserves your boss' attention first. The best way to understand is to know what's important to your boss and you will slowly get the hang of it.
Most of the time your boss will share professional and personal information with you. Don't be scared if something like this happens, you are the closet to your boss most of the time and these things happen because your boss trusts you with every inch of detail he/she tells you.
Last but not the least, I would like to say that be open to suggestions. You may know your job well but if your boss wants to do things a certain way it's always a good idea to work how he/she wants you to work.