Tips for Being an Assistant {from a pro}

Anyone who thinks that being an assistant is easy is strongly mistaken. It is a tedious, high-level job that means constant attention and taking on any has thrown to you. I would know, I’ve been doing assistant jobs for last seven years.

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Moving from just a desk assistant in high school to an executive assistant now, I’ve learned the in’s and out’s of assistant work better than I ever thought I would. Being in a supportive role is second nature to me, and today I’m sharing my tips for dealing with the position, along with a tip or two of how to get the job!

How to get the job…

Look at different sites Employers post positions on many different platforms, so check a selection. LinkedIn, Indeed, Glassdoor, Craigslist, etc. Make sure to read the position description carefully too, as positions with the same name could be totally different.

Set yourself apart Anyone can apply for an assistant job {many don’t even require a degree} so you need something that makes the employer remember you. My go-tos are to open my email with “bright-eyed, bushy tailed postgrad” or say under the word enthusiasm is a picture of me. Find something that describes you and makes you seem like a good candidate and use it!

And now that you have that assistant job…

Know your boss It should go without saying, but no two bosses are alike. I have two bosses myself and one likes to be checked in with all the time, while the other prefers more of an email correspondence. Talk to your boss about this. See how they organize tasks and come up with a work plan that benefits you both.

Dress for the job If I had to name the amount of times I’ve had to crawl under a desk, or drive for long periods of time, or run between copiers, this blog post would be a lot longer. I’m aware of how many odd tasks I’m asked to do in a day, and know that wearing high heels, a pencil skirt, and dangly earrings is not going to help get the work done. Dress for the job you’re going to do, meaning flexible work pants, a comfortable blouse, and loafers that will stand all that running about.

Glossier
Use a task system No matter what job you have, there are tasks to be done. Organizing those tasks is important. I’ve done everything from using a piece of paper to sticky notes on my monitor to using apps. Find a system that works for you. Currently I use Wunderlist and have lists for “anytime” “weekly” “monthly” and “quarterly” and it makes sure I don’t forget anything.

Find tasks you love It may seem weird, but filling your day with tasks can be frustrating. Find tasks that you enjoy doing to break up your day and not feel so monotonous. For me, it’s getting out of the office. Once a week I’ll head out and bring the team breakfast {we love this muffin place} or I will offer to help out by delivering/picking up. My day feels less bleh by not being cramped at my desk all day.

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Learn from the quirks and outdo them This is where all my success as an assistant comes from. Learn the stuff that will drive you crazy, and beat it at its own game. My boss likes his stuff stapled a certain way, otherwise he re-staples it. I programmed the copier to staple everything his way. Saves me so much time in the day, and keeps my boss happy. These quirk hacks will honestly make you an amazing assistant.


And those are my biggest tips for being an assistant! Have any to share, drop a comment below!

Stay classy, Internet,

morgan

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