Well, firstly, happy New Year everyone! Welcome to the first blog post of 2018. I hope that you all had a fantastic festive break and you were able to get some much needed R&R. I spent most of December in Australia visiting some amazing places (more on that later this month) and spending time with friends and family down under. I am now back in the office and absolutely raring to go. We have loads of amazing things planned for the Practically Perfect PA community this year, so I thought I would share with you some of the 2018 highlights.
Practically Perfect PA Events
The Future Assistant Conference
Our flagship event is taking place on Thursday 8th and Friday 9th February at Proud Camden and online. I can not wait for this year’s conference. The calibre of speakers is exceptional and I am so excited to share their expertise and experiences with our attendees. I have put a lot of thought into the programme and I truly believe the Future Assistant Conference will make the attendees feel empowered and motivated and above all future proofed! If you haven’t booked your place on the conference, we do still have spaces available, so head over to the Future Assistant website and get booking!
The Virtual Summit
Following the success of last year’s Virtual Summit we are planning two more online conferences for 2018. The dates are May and 19th October. We will keep you posted on the programme and speakers for the Summits and we will open registration in the next few weeks.
Practically Perfect PA online resources
This year will be Practically Perfect PA’s 7th birthday, which I can’t quite believe, but I am super proud to say! We’ve worked hard on improving the website this year and ensuring the content is relevant to Assistants, honest and practical. I know how tough the role is and I know how incredibly rewarding it can be too! So, this year I am going to continue to focus on great content that gives the Practically Perfect PA community tips that you can implement into your role. I will also start to share more videos, webinars, and interviews with people that will help you shape your career in 2018. As ever the Practically Perfect PA website will be free to access and hopefully invaluable to you.
Now that I am back from two, pretty much, back to back maternity breaks I plan to focus much more on our social media channels. We have a great online tribe of Assistants following Practically Perfect PA and I would like to increase the way that you can communicate with each other and network through social media.
So that is 2018 in a nutshell for Practically Perfect PA. I hope that you guys are as excited about the year ahead as I am and I can not wait to see you at our events and connect with you through the website and on social media.
Let’s go get ’em!
The other day I was looking at the roles for PAs in London and I must say there are loads of exciting opportunities out there for Assistants. I was really impressed with the array of roles and the different skills and qualities needed. It seems like a lot of organisations are beginning to understand how much a PA can bring to the table (LOTS AND LOTS AND LOTS). So, if there are lots of great roles out there it looks like it might be a good time to do a little CV update and a nose around the recruitment websites! If this is striking a cord why not have a look at my ultimate CV template for PAs.
Today I am sharing the love by showing you guys 10 websites every PA should read for career development. I follow these websites and they all have brilliant content for PAs, women in business and career advice in general. Do check them out!
Sometimes it can be hard to find that extra dose of #MondayMotivation, especially when you’re faced with a myriad of emails first thing in the morning and your to-do list becomes longer than your arm. And nobody has a to-do list longer than a PA, EA, admin assistant or office manager.
I think we’ve all been there. You’ve been working in your role for a few years, you know everything there is to know about the job and you’re settled into a fairly easy routine that doesn’t come with too much pressure. Life is good right? Well, yes, it sounds like it. But then comes the day when you start to feel a bit bored, a bit unmotivated, the stuff that used to make you feel excited just, well, doesn’t anymore. I’ve definitely felt like that in some roles. Particularly after a few years when the every day was good, but not in the slightest bit challenging. If you feel the same, maybe it is time to ask yourself ‘are you outgrowing your PA role?
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.
I was recently watching a brilliant interview with the former Assistant to Mark Zukerberg, Anikka Fragodt. During her presentation she said that she was always open and approachable with her colleagues at Facebook because she felt part of her role was to council her colleagues and pass their fears and concerns onto her Executive. This is so true and such a vital part of the role… But, as we all know, some colleagues are easier to interact with than others! In our continued series about building relationships with colleagues, today, we will look at how to deal with the office downer.
Can a PA help their employer be more enterprising? Today’s organisations require their employees to be more enterprising, more aware of the needs of customers and more involved in developing their products and services. It is harder than ever to differentiate as a business, keep customers returning and increase profits. By having every member of staff thinking in an enterprising way and being more commercially minded it is possible to stand out above the competition.
Recently, the OpenMeet team had the pleasure of participating in the annual Practically Perfect PA Assist Conference 2017, where we ran a few workshops on career development for assistants: 5 common problems and how to solve them. This is the second of three blogs that we are producing based on all the great information and feedback we got from our workshop participants. Read the first one, on what to look for in an event supplier, and watch out for the third and final blog, on how to ensure organisations value PA work!