This month’s Day in the life is from Tracy Reid, PA to two directors at Arup. Tracy recently attended the Assist Conference and has a very busy role supporting two directors and their teams at the world famous architect firm. Here is a day in the life: Tracy Reid.
Day in the life: Tracy Reid
What are the main aspects of your role?
PA Support to our Group Leader and our Group Director. Extensive Diary Management, arranging meetings and ensuring meeting clashes don’t occur. Organisation global tele and video conferences. Complex travel arrangements – flights, hotels, trains, visas. Processing expense claims. I organise internal and external events. Co-ordination of our PA/Secretary meetings that we have every 2 months. I also work very closely with our group Secretary.
What is your morning routine before you get into the office?
I’m an early bird so I’m usually up at 5.30 and the first thing I do is my gratitude every morning without fail. How we spend our first 45mins in the morning is so important it sets us up for the rest of the day so I’ll stick on a TED Talk or a motivational speaker while I’m getting ready, I avoid the news and the newspapers (it’s never good news, let’s be honest!) I usually leave my flat around 7.30 and my commute is only 9 stops on the tube.
What time do you get into the office and what time do you leave?
I am in the office most mornings between 8.00-8.30 and I leave each night at 5.30 for the gym!
What does an average day look like?
I begin each day by checking the directors calendars, then my ‘to do list’. I also check which meeting rooms I have booked that day in case we have had any meetings cancelled, meeting rooms are like gold dust in our office! No two days are the same.
What do you do for lunch?
I always try to cook on Sunday, so I have lunch with me every day. Because we work so close to Charlotte St and Tottenham Court Road it would be so easy to spend a fortune on food every day…
What is the hardest part of your day?
This would be the time I spend ringing people trying to find meeting rooms for last minute requests and especially for larger meetings. This is quite time consuming.
What do you enjoy most about your role?
I have the best boss anyone could wish for. Both my directors are very personable and they love to socialise. I’m a real people person and I love that I get to support the team as well as the senior staff. I also love my Prosecco nights out with my fellow PAs!
What has been your career highlight?
I lived and worked in Western Australia for 2 and a half years where I worked as a Business Unit Administrator for a Civil Engineering team and I won an award two years in a row at the annual staff awards dinner. Best New Employee and the Manager’s Award – Best and Fairest. Also being accepted into the Institute of Administrative Management at Member level.
What do you do in the evening with your spare time?
You’ll find me in the gym straight after work Mon-Thurs. Other than keeping fit I love going to gigs.
What is the one piece of advice you would give to other assistants?
Believe in yourself. Network and build strong relationships with your peers, it will become invaluable. Be kind, always treat people in the way you would want to be treated yourself.
What would you do if you were not an assistant?
A life coach – I love to help others.
What is the one piece of technology, app or website you could not do your job without?
I would be lost without the Microsoft Outlook calendar reminders, the Snipping Tool and Skyscanner!
Can you recommend any events, books, publications, websites, and training programmes for other assistants?
The Assist Conference and Practically Perfect PA. Also PA Life and Small PDF – This is a great website for converting PDF’s. I would also recommend joining IAM (Institute of Administrative Management) they run regular CPD’s and webinars.