Superstar: The New Standard

— May 20, 2013 —

Why the Superstar is the New Standard

 

A standard admin knows how to screen your calls, but…

A superstar understands that while all incoming calls and emails are of importance, only a select few are of high priority.  A great EA is assertive and decisive without taking over your business, is able to make decisions and delegate appropriately and is careful not to overstep boundaries.  A great EA will learn what your preferences are first, then execute on tasks.  Because the role is to weed out the chaff from the grain, a great EA must be tough-skinned, ready and able to handle difficult situations both internally and externally.

A standard admin can manage a laptop, an iPad and a Blackberry, but…

A Superstar stays up to date on the latest technology trends including new hardware, productivity applications and upcoming releases.  An EA who is truly tech-savvy possesses the intuitive understanding of unfamiliar technology, meaning they can successfully decipher, at the very least, determine the basic functions of previously uninitiated tech.

A standard admin knows how to Google, but…

A Superstar EA is one who knows how to leverage his/her networks.  Leveraging a network of other administrative professionals (such as the Seraphic Society, or even LinkedIn) is a great way to get answers to procedural questions that are specific to the administrative craft and recommendation-worthy.  For example, an EA is looking to book a reservation at a seafood restaurant for a client meeting later in the week.  Referencing Zagat or Yelp and reading reviews from people who have been there on dates, alone, with friends, or with their parents, etc., is one way to approach the need.  Alternatively, an administrator with a network can contact a cohort who coordinates dinner meetings often and ask for their recommendation. 

A standard admin knows your demographic landmarks, but…

A Superstar EA can navigate your demographic region like a cartographer.  They know all of the best places in town to satiate your every need, from florists, to bookstores and restaurants.  A great EA knows where to go and who to contact for sports tickets and exclusive reservations.  They also know the big shots in town; the top designer, the top real-estate broker, and, not to mention you.

A standard admin tells you what you want to hear, but…

A Superstar EA tells it like it is.  The assistant’s role is to be the right hand person to the executive.  They see everything first, then disseminate important information to the executive as necessary.  A great assistant will be proactive in looking for ways to streamline procedures for your business and let you know where s/he sees room for improvement.  Which brings us to:

A standard admin has your best interest at heart, but…

A Superstar EA has your best interest at heart and plans accordingly.  Busy executives are commonplace.  A great administrator will know the nuances.  For example, if you are prone to jet lag, a great assistant will book all meetings at least 24 hours after you’ve arrived back from a different time zone because they anticipate your need to regroup and have a clear mind.  A great assistant knows your routine and will coordinate your schedules appropriately, ensuring you have time every day to do the things that keep you sane.  Whether you attend a community group weekly or you’re a gym buff, a great assistant will know to block off time for you in your schedule so you can maintain some semblance of a normal work/life balance.

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