Latest core competencies blogs

Tapping into the power of influence

Tapping into the power of influence

It often feels like hierarchy and influence go hand in hand, but the capacity to influence others isn’t exclusively linked to stature and job titles. As an assistant, it may sometimes feel either uncomfortable or even impossible to influence others in the workplace, but it’s not necessarily the case. When we aren’t the most senior […]

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The Assistant growth mindset

The Assistant growth mindset

How do you feel when someone gives you feedback at work? Are you open to feedback, or do you feel defensive? What happens when you have challenges at work? Do you face them head-on, or do you avoid the situation? As Assistants, we often come up against misconceptions about the role. How do you feel […]

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How to show empathy with even the most annoying person!

How to show empathy with even the most annoying person!

Assistants have buckets full of empathy; you wouldn’t be in the job if you didn’t. What I find is that empathy can often be taken advantage of by people who don’t respect what we do – be it, that colleague who wants your time or that Executive who doesn’t understand your role. Empathy can quickly […]

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Bridging the interpersonal gap between staff and a busy boss

Bridging the interpersonal gap between staff and a busy boss

A considerable part of an Executive’s job is to lead their staff, motivate and encourage them. However, this isn’t always the case. There are many Executive’s who are too busy, or under too much pressure in their roles to manage their staff effectively. There are also Executive’s who are very good at what they do […]

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Getting to grips with your organisation's strategy

Getting to grips with your organisation's strategy

For Assistants, it has become more apparent that the way forward in our profession is to work as a strategic business partner with our Executive. We have written about this a lot over here on Practically Perfect PA and something I have advocated for many years. The role of the Assistant isn’t going anywhere, despite […]

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Working well under pressure

Working well under pressure

It goes without saying that at some point in your career, you will have to work under pressure, meet tight deadlines and deal with stressful situations. Although organisations should care for their employee’s wellbeing and strive to create a calm environment, this is not always achievable. There will be times when, even for the most […]

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How should Assistants represent their boss at a meeting

How should Assistants represent their boss at a meeting

I can remember the first meeting I went to instead of my manager was terrifying. It was a last-minute decision because she was running late and I didn’t have time to prepare myself properly. I didn’t do anything in the meeting except take a few notes and agree to report back to my manager later […]

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Working with the executive team

Working with the executive team

As assistants most of us will interact with our organisation’s Executive team on a daily if not hourly basis. Your manager may well be part of the Executive team. If that is the case you will have even more phone calls, meetings and general engagement with other Directors and top-level members of staff.

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Saying 'no' nicely

Saying 'no' nicely

A short and sweet blog post today. I was going to write about setting boundaries and saying ‘no’ nicely but then I found this article – and it is better than anything I could have written so I thought I would share it with you.

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Speaking with authority at work

Speaking with authority at work

Recently speaking in public and delivering training courses has made me so much more conscious of my voice. Last week I talked to a group of students studying journalism at a university in Barcelona. The group were a mix of British and Spanish students so I had to make sure I spoke clearly and that […]

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How to be an assertive Assistant

How to be an assertive Assistant

I think it is hard for Assistants to be assertive, especially when we want to be helpful, supportive and take a flexible approach with our work. Also, I’m not 100% sure what our managers even mean when they say they want us to be assertive, do they want us to be assertive with them and […]

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Do you have the confidence to open the boardroom door?

I’m not quite sure why I’ve been so lucky, but in my last three roles, I have sat near the company boardroom, in the previous two offices, in fact, I’ve sat directly outside the boardroom. As I said, I don’t know why I was so lucky! I would see the comings and goings of all […]

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