An interesting bit of research came to my attention recently, courtesy of the BBC website. It concerned the findings of Professor David De Cremer from Cambridge University’s Judge Business School who’d looked into the emotional undergrowth of office email (at least that’s how the BBC put it).
I’m so excited to share this blog post with you today! As many of you will know, we have organised a Virtual Summit for PAs on the 20th October. As part of the programme for the Virtual Summit we wanted to include a few live sessions recorded in front of an audience. Well, today I am asking if you would like to be part of that live audience? We are looking for assistants who would like to take part in the Virtual Summit Live Recording! Here are the details:
Ahhhhhhhhhh!!! Was pretty much the sound I made when I was asked to take on the task of managing meeting rooms for my office. I say ‘asked’, if I’d been asked, obviously I would have said ‘hell will freeze over before I manage the meeting rooms’. No, I was told I had to manage the meeting rooms because I was the only Assistant on the same floor as all the meeting rooms so it made sense for me to manage who was using them. I’m not going to lie to you, I hated this task. It sucked. It sucked more than expenses and writing minutes combined.
I thought today would be a good time to give you all a quick update on where we are with the Virtual Summit. Being the first event of its kind for Personal Assistants there is a lot, lot, lot of planning going on! So, who is attending the Virtual Summit? Well, hundreds of you have already signed up to the Summit, which is really exciting! We have assistants, literally from all over the world, booked onto the event. Just this morning we had our first booking from China. Ni hao! I know we have PAs also booked on from the States, Australia, Europe and South America. I’m over the moon! Welcome everyone, the Summit really is going global!
According to tech giant Cisco, 80% of all internet traffic will be video by 2019.
No surprise then that the vast majority of employers now use video as part of their interview process, saying it saves a significant amount of time on face-to-face interviews and gives hiring managers a strong understanding of who will fit in a specific role and company culture.
A few years ago I was working as a PA within a large team of highly qualified, talented and very very confident project management consultants. I was asked by one of my colleagues to come along to a meeting to discuss how the organisation could communicate more successfully with staff. I wasn’t there to take notes or represent my Executive, I was there to offer my own thoughts and opinions, and I totally freaked out. I felt like a complete fraud, despite the fact that I had lots of thoughts on the subject and had worked on similar projects in other organisations. Nevertheless, in that meeting I didn’t say very much, when asked a specific question I said I didn’t know and I generally looked and felt completely redundant. I’m sure we’ve all been there, feeling like a fraud at work and having a major crisis of confidence. I felt so stupid that day that I promised myself, it wouldn’t happen again. I’ve thrown myself into a few situations where I have felt totally out of my depth, questioned my entire career and skill set and basically wanted to crawl back into bed and hide. I started to tell myself that I have to basically ‘fake it till I make it’ and that is what I’ve done ever since! Here are some of my thoughts on why, sometimes, it’s quite good to feel like a fraud at work.
Project management is a key skill for PAs these days. So many organisations are recognising that PAs are natural project managers – we are organised, we structure our work in a way that lends itself well to project work and actually we’ve been managing projects for most of our working life! But as usual, most of us are not sent on project management training! So here you will find some great blogs, books, tools and general tips on how to Project Manage like a pro.
This week I have been working on the programme for the Future Assistant conference taking place next February. The conference will look at how the industry is changing, how the role is evolving and what skills are required to keep up with these new demands. A huge challenge we face as assistants is moving from a position of support staff, where we take on any task assigned to us, to a more proactive position where we source our own work, take on projects that we think will make a difference and make decisions based on the best interests of the business and our Executives. This is a big leap for many assistants, but one we must take in order to move the industry forward. Over the course of the year I thought I would write a few blog posts that break this challenge down. Firstly, how can you be more accountable at work?