Well, we are a few weeks into 2018 and I have seen a ton of articles, opinion pieces and social media messages about technology, specifically Artificial Intelligence, taking over the role of Assistants. I can understand the cause for concern because so many of us are still battling with the perception of the Assistant role. Who wants to be explaining the difference between our role and what Siri can offer Executives? Urrrggghhhh! And of course there are going to be organisations that think they can downsize their administrative work force and replace it with chatbots and scheduling tools. We have to be prepared, to firstly have these conversations, because as far as we have come, we are still having to explain what we do and where we offer return on investment. Secondly, we have to be ahead of the game. The technology is already in place and it is getting better and better. We have to know what the technology is, how to use it and where it adds value for our Executives and also for us. This is a subject we are talking about extensively during the Future Assistant Conference in February and we will be writing a lot of articles on Practically Perfect PA over the next year. So, I thought today we would take a look at scheduling tools that Assistants can use to help arrange meetings. Here are 4 scheduling tools to try in 2018.
Today I wanted to give you a little of what to expect at the Future Assistant Conference in February next year by sharing one of the panel sessions from the Practically Perfect PA Virtual Summit. The topic was ‘managing your Executive’s schedule like a total megastar’ and the panel was made up of four brilliant assistants offering fantastic advice on managing complex diaries. We have two panel sessions taking place over the course of the two day event, here are a few more details.
In my mind, the single most important aspect of our role is to save our Executive’s time. Saving our Executive time means they can spend that time on making the organisation more successful. There are loads of different ways we can save our Executive’s time, but I think it all starts with the fundamental task of diary management.
While the role of a PA or EA is constantly evolving, diary management continues to be a fundamental task. PAs spend at least a third of their time managing diaries, so it’s essential that you’ve mastered this aspect of your job. This guide provides tips to help you on your way.
I have written a lot about diary management over the years, which is not surprising when you think assistants spend at the very least a third of their day organising their manager’s calendars. Juggling our boss’s time is a complex operation. There are also a lot of tasks related to diary management, for example ensuring our managers get to their meetings on time, understand the reason for the meeting and are prepared for it.