How I used an administrative competency assessment to measure my skill level in the administrative field.
Am I A Good Assistant?
Use this assessment for executive and administrative assistants as a tool to measure your skill level.
Several years ago I was preparing for my first annual review with my new executive, Joan Burge, Founder and CEO of Office Dynamics International. I wanted to be ready for anything when we sat down together to discuss my progress and my skill set as her Chief Executive Assistant.
As I was looking for some ideas on how to prepare, I came across a document that labeled and provided a measurement of the core administrative competencies. The assessment listed several main functions under each competency to measure an individual’s performance. I remembered this document from some one-on-one coaching that Joan did with her high-level executive assistant clients. She would have the assistant and the executive fill out separate assessments and they would meet afterward to discuss the ratings.
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I decided I should do a self-assessment before my big review.
I jumped right into this competency assessment for assistants. It’s exactly what I needed to measure my own skill level.
What are the core administrative competencies?
- Appointment Coordination and Planning
- Manager Support
- Managing Office Technology
- Meeting Preparation and Implementation
- Office Communication
- Office Organization and Workspace Image
- Problem Solving
- Professional Behavior and Attitude
- Professional Development
- Supporting Multiple Managers
- Task, Time and Project Management
- Teamwork and Collaboration
As I rated myself under each item I was objective. I determined whether I did perform that function seldom, sometimes, usually, always or I marked not applicable if it was a function that wasn’t part of the expectations of my role.
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After completing the assessment, I took things a step further in preparing for my review. I wrote a report detailing my performance and answers under each of the measured administrative competencies. It was about a paragraph or two about each of the competencies and my self-assessed performance in each area.
This wasn’t an expectation of my review but when I presented this documented assessment to my executive during our review she was really impressed by the attention to detail and objective self-assessment I provided.
What I learned about myself by doing this assessment.
- As I worked through this assessment I uncovered gap areas that I knew I needed to improve upon. I was able to work out an action plan on how I would do that in my report.
- I also discovered areas of strength for me. This was a confidence builder for me as I prepared for my first review.
- There were areas I wasn’t getting to do much work in that I knew I enjoyed and wanted to do more of. In my report, I was about to outline these areas of my strengths and interests with my executive in pursuit of more fulfilling work.
At the end of the review, I received what I was working toward and I had gained an added level of respect and confidence from the executive I was supporting.
How can you use this assessment?
You will find that the instructions are simple in this assessment. There are numerous ways you can approach this administrative competency assessment.
- You can follow the instructions and ask your executive to fill it out in regards to your current performance, discuss the results, create an action plan and revisit it again in 30 to 60 days.
- You and your executive can fill out the assessment and review your results together. You will find that you don’t match up in some areas. You may also find that there are areas you’re focusing on too much that your executive doesn’t find value in. Have a dialogue about this, create an action plan and revisit the assessment together again in 30, 60 and 90 days.
- Use the approach I modeled above. Fill out the assessment on your own and create a report of your findings. Create a plan of action for yourself and revisit the assessment in 30, 60 and 90 days. Determine whether you want to share the report with your leader.
No matter which approach you choose to do, keep your results so you have something to measure against when you revisit the assessment in the future.
Nice way to get things started.
P.S. Check in below after you’ve done your self-assessment. Was there anything that surprised you? Something that you want to work on or that boosted your self-esteem after seeing? Does your organization have a standard assessment for assistants they use? Share in the comment below.