As you all know by now, I am not only a travel slave, but I am a personal / executive assistant and project manager to HNW individuals. Do I like this career? Yes I do. I am a natural helper and have a love of organising.
My passion in real estate and events make my job fun, and I combine it with travels now that I mainly work for myself. I have drawn up a couple of skills and tips of become a fulfilled assistant and maybe this will enlighten a couple of people to what it takes to get the job done.
The usual question I get is: “What exactly do you do?” my usual reply is : “Everything, from booking restaurants, dealing with lawyers and managing staff”
First of all, you need to be a naturally organised person, your brain better have multiple drawers, that you open and close one at a time. If you happen to open them all at the same time, the situation might get fairly messy and you will start talking gibberish, and feel like your brain is on overdrive. If this does happen, just take a deep breath, clear your mind and reboot.
Here is an extract of questions, I would ask a person coming to me for advice on being an assistant:
Why are you aspiring to be an assistant?
Now this can be very funny and entertaining one, from I do not want the full work load in being the boss or, I want to replace the boss one day or, I cannot find anything else right now, and occasionally, I like helping people.
Personally, I find it rewarding, knowing I am using my knowledge and skills to help somebody in their every day life or grow their business.
Being an assistant with a purpose is very important and crucial for good results.
What do you think it takes to be organized?
I usually come across blank faces, then again it is maybe because they are so experienced, they do it naturally, well I would hope so.
- Be a detail freak
- Make elaborate to do lists
- Daily reports (even if you have done one task that day for your client, take notes)
- Keep a phone log
- Keep an address diary
- Keep all business cards, take a photo, enter them in your phone.
- Remember names
- After a meeting, always follow up with an email or a text message thanking them for their time.
- Flag important emails
- Reply to a client or boss within 24 hs maximum.
Of course, there are many, many, more but these are for me the basics.
The funniest and most crucial is: how do you count on dealing with your employer?
Here again, I get a lot of comments but the crucial one I stick to is: learn to not judge. Take them at face value. You have not been employed to judge your boss, you are there to utilise your skills and brains to make their life easier. They have come so far without you, and will continue living their lives after you leave, so there is no point having an opinion on the way they choose to live their lives.
I am adamant, if you are able to not judge and give your opinion in a kind and gentle way, based on the fact that they are intelligent enough to accept your opinion, in the latter case, never give your opinion if never asked, then you will overcome any types of stress. Then again, we go back to my opening paragraph, never open all the draws at the same time, 2 max at a time, but be prepared to experience palpitations.
There are ways to beat the stress, realign your soul and body.
There are ways to beat the stress, realign your soul and body. However this would be a recommendation for any kind career stress. Just be yourself and find your healthy escape, for me it is running and yoga. What is yours?
Questions are welcome, if I get enough of them, I will reply in another article!!!
Stay strong and keep moving forward.