Saturday, May 17, 2008

How to be an assistant?

Be a Kickass Assistant: by Heather Beckel (Book)

Definition: Assistant
“A person who assists” (Webster’s dictionary)

The skills necessary to be a good assistant will serve you throughout your professional career: organization, diplomacy, problem solving, prioritizing, time management, and communication.

Learn what it takes to become an executive
Learn how the company works

Take every advantage to impress upon everyone your willingness to do any job and to do that job better anyone else does.

Keep your eyes open for mentors and continually seek them out
Look for people you admire
Cultivate friendships
The more you know about the place you work for, the better you’ll be at your current job
Know the company and its product and services


The ability to take control without taking over
Attention to detail
The initiative to solve problems
Getting satisfaction from being indispensable and in service to someone
Communication skills
The ability to stay calm under pressure

Answer questions directly, don’t ramble
Take a lot of notes
Be very political: watch what you say and how you behave with everyone.
Speak softly: someone who speaks loudly is annoying and noticeable in a negative way.
Don’t speak badly of your former boss and/or employer

CREATING a Telephone Directory

Create and constantly update a miniature version for your boss to carry (most called numbers) / laminate it (wallet size)

Emergency contact numbers

Educate yourself (read all the reports and memos coming into the office)

Put it in writing: electronic and paper correspondence
Do not walk away from your computer with a document open on your screen Do not take sides in disputes (office politics)
Imitate the people who have the jobs you want

Incoming Mail

Open everything
Staple envelopes to letters and all enclosures
Sort the mail
Category 1: mail that your boss must look at before you take any action
Category 2: mail for which you can immediately generate a response
Category 3: invitations , write yes or no / accept / decline Category 4: Request to speak or donations.

Being a Boss

The Girl’s guide to being a boss
By: Caitlin Friedman

Create a to do list
Set goals
Stick to deadlines
Keep your word
Get it in writing
Be proactive about everything you do

Here are some of the key things you should be ready, willing and able to provide:

Clear vision

Delegate a clear assignment and set a deadline
You are not there to be anyone’s friend. You are in the leadership role to provide the tools and environment that your team needs to accomplish their goals.

Everyone has something valuable to offer
Delegate responsibilities and trust that the task will get done
Your personality
Do not micromanage ( over control )

JFK; Bush; LBJ; Nixon