Go for it! If you enjoy organising and helping others, this role is perfect for you. Building great relationships and communicating effectively is a big part of the role so ask plenty of questions. Even those silly ones!
If I had to choose just one thing, it would be the opportunity the role gives me to build new connections. I love meeting new people from all walks of life and getting to know them.
Thank you! During the Apprenticeship (which ran over a 18 month period), I pulled together a portfolio of coursework and a project to showcase my skills, knowledge and understanding of organising and delivering successful events. At my end-point-assessment I presented my portfolio along with my project findings. I was grateful to have this development opportunity as I was able to ‘learn on the job’ which really helped me in my day-to-day role. By the end of the programme, my confidence in my own ability had grown significantly.
Yes, I had to quickly adapt to ‘working from home’ and the challenges that brought. Fortunately, I still had support from my peers, mentor and Apprenticeship Coach (albeit virtually!). I used the change in circumstances to enhance my portfolio, comparing differences between digital and live events and how events of the future will look.
I hope so! I think as we gradually return to ‘normal’ (whatever that is!) there will be a blend of digital and live events depending on the event’s size/purpose. Despite the fact digital events have kept us going over ‘lockdown’, I don’t think the atmosphere of a live event can be replicated online!
As I support 2 Executives, I have to manage my time effectively to meet conflicting deadlines. Forward planning and good communication is key! Everybody has a different personality/way of working so you have to get to know your Executive and flex to their individual needs.
I aim to meet with my Executives at least once a week. I book out half an hour (or whatever time they can spare) to bring them up to date and check the diary. Some weeks are so busy that we have to speak over email. Whichever method we use, I always prep to ensure we both take value from our communication.
Whilst managing my Executives’ diaries, I also have to make sure I’m managing my own time. At the beginning of each week, I set new goals of what I would like to achieve that week and use time boxing to help me with this. I’m really not sure what I would do without my (ever-growing!) ‘to do list’ which I’m constantly reviewing to prioritise tasks and delegating where appropriate (tip- If you are wanting to use less paper, use tools such as Microsoft OneNote!).
Other than the usual communication and organisational skills, I would say my strengths are my flexible/adaptable approach, discretion and approachable manner.
The role of an Executive Assistant has been changing for some time now and the pressures of a global Pandemic has added to this. To ensure I keep up with the role, I have adapted a more strategic approach and embraced new technology (who had heard of Microsoft Teams before March 2020?). My willingness to learn will help me upskill where needed so I’m not left behind.
There are so many advantages of being a member! As someone quite new to the game, I have found the support, guidance and experience of the other members invaluable. It is really encouraging to be surrounded by like-minded individuals who share the same passion.
I’m really looking forward to seeing what opportunities the rest of 2021 will bring as I figure out a new way of working, but after 18 months of Apprenticeship coursework I am going to have a short well-earnt rest!
Meet our Merseyside PA of the Year Runner-up