Executive Assistant to Chief of Staff? Ask an Admin

Ask an Admin was created by Office Dynamics to help administrative professionals with their problems through the help of their peers. We don’t always have an answer to each individual’s problem but we know some of you might. Please read the question and comment below.

Q: Preethi asks:

Hi Fellow Admins,

I am an administrative professional with over 10 years of experience. I have been an EA to the CEO or C-level executive for the last 5+ years. I am involved in corporate strategy; plan, organize and participate in Board and committee meetings, handle performance appraisal, review and edit HR and Board policies, organize events and town halls, etc.

I have been doing this for a while now and wonder where to next? I like being an admin professional but also want growth in terms of role, designation, and pay. Is there a way to become a Chief of Staff? Most CoS in the corporate industry seem to be from operational or management background. Is there a way for an EA to become CoS?


It is possible for an administrative professional with experience as an executive assistant to become a Chief of Staff (CoS). The Chief of Staff role is responsible for managing and coordinating the work of a company or organization, and often involves working closely with the CEO or other senior leaders to set and achieve strategic goals.

A: To position yourself for a Chief of Staff role, you may want to consider the following steps:

  1. Expand your skills and knowledge: As an EA, you have likely gained a wealth of knowledge and skills that are relevant to the Chief of Staff role. However, you may want to consider expanding your skillset by taking on additional responsibilities or learning new skills that are relevant to the CoS role. This could include taking on management responsibilities, learning more about financial analysis or strategic planning, or expanding your knowledge of the industry in which you work.
  2. Network and build relationships: Building relationships with other professionals in your industry can be a valuable way to learn about new opportunities and to position yourself for a Chief of Staff role. Consider joining professional organizations or attending industry events to connect with others who may be able to help you advance your career.
  3. Seek out additional leadership opportunities: One way to demonstrate your potential as a Chief of Staff is to seek out additional leadership opportunities within your organization. This could involve taking on additional responsibilities or leading a team or project. By demonstrating your ability to effectively lead and manage others, you can demonstrate your potential as a Chief of Staff.
  4. Communicate your career goals: If you are interested in becoming a Chief of Staff, it’s important to communicate your career goals to your employer. Consider having a conversation with your manager or HR representative to discuss your career aspirations and to see if there are any opportunities within the organization for you to take on additional responsibilities or to prepare for a CoS role.

Overall, it’s important to be proactive in your career development and to seek out opportunities to learn and grow as a professional. With the right combination of skills, experience, and ambition, it is possible for an administrative professional like yourself to become a Chief of Staff.


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