I took my first online training course, probably around 15 years ago now. It was a live webinar, and we had to listen to the speaker via the phone on my desk while watching the slideshow on my computer screen. It was a bit of a novelty, and funnily enough, a lot of my colleagues were watching the whole thing behind my shoulder because it was the first live webinar they had seen. It was great, I didn’t have to leave my desk, I did the webinar over lunch and learnt quite a bit, but the technology wasn’t quite ready to capture my attention. We’ve come along way since then. Online training is everywhere, and there are a lot of fantastic courses that Assistants can do, for free or for a small price that will help further their career and professional development. I thought today. I would share with you five online courses every Executive Assistant should take.

Five online courses every Executive Assistant should take

Project Management Basics

During our recent Future Assistant Conference, we had a great session on project management basics for Assistants. If you want to check that out, the link is here. In the meantime, Alison.com does an excellent free introduction to project management. The course takes 1-2 hours, and a certificate is provided at the end. Project management is such a useful tool for Assistants to have, and it is well worth taking a course so that you understand the basics and pick up a few valuable project management skills along the way.

Introduction to Public Speaking

Throughout my career, I have always had to force myself to speak up. It is not easy for me. But, once I found my voice and was able to conquer my nerves, I haven’t looked back. Speaking in meetings, speaking in public and generally voicing your opinion helps your career so much. If you find that you struggle to speak in public, it is worth investing the time in a training course. Go Skills have a public speaking course for $29 and the University of Washington have an archived course on the introduction to public speaking, which you can access for free.

Foundations of Business Strategy 

We often talk about the need for Assistants to have good business acumen. Knowing the business that you work in is essential. Having a general knowledge of good business practice is a great place to start. This course by Udemy offers a free introduction to business strategy. We also have a free video on how Assistants can increase their business acumen.

Decision Making 

Decision making is an essential skill for Assistants, but it takes a lot of practice to make a decision first and then to be confident in the choices that you have made, primarily if you work in a fast pace, sophisticated environment. This course from futurelearn.com offers a free seven-week programme that will give you all of the skills you need to make decisions and lead with confidence.

Corporate Finance 

Along with business acumen, having a good understanding of how corporate finance works will elevate you in your role. There is an excellent course by New York University available for free through Apple U, and this one hour course from Skillshare gives you an overview of accounting practices for business.

Practically Perfect PA Online Course 

We have been running events for assistants for five years, and we are proud that we do activities a little differently. We concentrate on making our audience feel like participants. Our content is driven by our blog, Europe’s largest online resource for Assistants. Career and personal development, practical advice and key skills will always be at the very core of our events.

We ensure our Practically Perfect PA events are packed with relevant content and offer great value for all Assistants. To learn more about our events and to register for one of our online courses, visit our events page.