As an administrative professional, it’s important to understand the expectations and responsibilities that come with the role. Gone are the days of simply answering phone calls and scheduling appointments; modern assistants are expected to be advisors, problem solvers, and even leaders within their organizations. But with all of these added responsibilities, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. That’s where the key competencies come in. These twelve responsibilities, including appointment management, manager support, and professional development, are essential for success as a modern assistant.
But what does this actually look like in practice? A good example is the competency of manager support. Today’s inner circle assistants don’t just wait to be told what to do; they are initiators. For example, an assistant might set up a trip for their manager, not just booking the flights and hotel rooms, but also looking for additional speaking opportunities while they are there. This kind of proactive approach shows initiative and a willingness to go above and beyond to support the success of the team.
It’s important to remember that the role of the administrative professional has changed dramatically in recent years, and it’s up to us to keep up with these changes and continuously improve our skills. If you’re looking to take your career to the next level and become a valuable member of your company’s inner circle, it’s worth considering brushing up on these key competencies.
Core 19 Competencies for Administrative Professionals
Being able to maintain a positive attitude and approach to work, even in difficult or stressful situations.
Efficiently scheduling and managing appointments and meetings for your manager and the team.
Having a deep understanding of how businesses operate and the ability to use that knowledge to make informed decisions.
Career Management/Professional Development:
Taking an active role in planning and managing your own career development, including setting goals, seeking out learning and development opportunities, and building a professional network.
Inspiring and motivating others to achieve a common goal, as well as leading by example and making decisions that are in the best interests of the team or organization.
Proactively assisting your manager and taking on additional responsibilities to support their success.
Managing Office Technology:
Staying up to date on the latest technology and using it effectively to support the team.
Meeting Preparation, Coordination, and Execution:
Preparing for, coordinating, and successfully executing meetings and events.
Effectively communicating with colleagues, both in person and through various communication channels.
Maintaining an organized and efficient office environment.
Behaving in a professional manner at all times, including being respectful, ethical, and responsible in your interactions with others.
Continuously learning and improving your skills to stay up to date on the latest trends and best practices in the field.
Presenting yourself in a professional manner and building a personal brand that reflects your values, skills, and expertise. This may include things like maintaining a professional appearance, being active on professional social media platforms, and regularly updating your professional materials (e.g., resume, LinkedIn profile).
Identifying and solving issues as they arise.
Supporting Multiple Leaders:
Effectively managing your time and resources to support multiple leaders and teams.
Task & Project Management:
Effectively managing tasks and projects, including setting goals, creating plans, and meeting deadlines.
Being a good team player, collaborating with others and working effectively in a group to achieve common goals.
Efficiently managing your time to ensure that you are able to complete all of your tasks and meet deadlines.
The ability to effectively plan and facilitate virtual meetings, including the use of technology and tools to ensure that all attendees are able to participate fully and communicate.
Why are These Competencies Important for my Career?
The key competencies that I mentioned are important for your career as an administrative professional because they represent the skills and responsibilities that are essential for success in the modern workplace. By mastering these competencies, you can demonstrate your value as a team member and position yourself as a valuable asset to your organization.
For example, strong appointment management skills allow you to efficiently schedule and manage your manager’s calendar, ensuring that their time is used effectively and that they are able to focus on the tasks that are most important to the team. Manager support skills, on the other hand, involve proactively assisting your manager and taking on additional responsibilities to support their success. Demonstrating problem solving skills can help you identify and solve issues as they arise, while professional development skills allow you to continuously improve and stay up to date on the latest trends and best practices in the field.
Overall, these competencies are essential for building a successful career as an administrative professional and positioning yourself as a valuable member of the team. By focusing on mastering these skills, you can set yourself up for long-term success in your career.
Questions to Ask Yourself
Here are some good questions to set yourself apart and build on the above.
- What are my strengths and how can I use them to excel in my role as an administrative professional?
- What areas do I feel I need to improve in and how can I go about doing so?
- How can I better support my manager and the team as a whole?
- How can I make sure that I am using my time and resources effectively to be the most efficient in my role?
- How can I stay up to date on the latest trends and best practices in the field of administrative work?
- How can I take on additional responsibilities and challenges to continue growing in my role?
- How can I build positive relationships with my colleagues and effectively communicate with them?
- How can I adapt to changing needs and expectations within my organization?
- How can I maintain a positive attitude?
Being an administrative professional is no longer just about answering phone calls and scheduling appointments. Today’s assistants are expected to be advisors, problem solvers, and even leaders within their organizations. The key competencies, including manager support, appointment management, and professional development, are essential for success in this role. To take your career to the next level and become a valuable member of your company’s inner circle, it’s important to continuously improve your skills and stay up to date on the latest trends and best practices in the field. By focusing on these core competencies and utilizing them in practice, you can rise to the challenge of being a modern administrative professional and make a real impact in your organization.
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