The main objective of an executive secretary is to provide excellent administrative support to the boss and to make him shine brighter than the sun on a hot July day. How does a mere mortal accomplish that feat? By thinking like one's boss and anticipating his needs. Know the intricate details of your company, handle all the things your boss does not have time to do (delegating them when possible), and never let your boss see you sweat while doing all this.
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Provide Excellent Administrative Support
Executive secretaries are the boss' key contact person, and it is crucial for them to keep the business running smoothly. They tell the boss what is happening in the company at a moment's notice. Not only will they type and answer the phones, but they may have to put a budget together. The boss is not available to any and everyone, and the executive secretary keeps the wolves away.
If the boss is not available for a meeting, the executive secretary fills in. She should not only fill the empty seat, but present information and ask the right questions. A pair of buns to warm the boss' empty seat or a pretty (or handsome) face is not enough.
Know Your Company
There is no excuse for not knowing the hierarchy of the company, who reports to your boss, who reports to the boss' underlings, who the middle managers are, who the other executive secretaries are and who the other administrative support people are (down to the mail clerk). Know who is who and what is what. Yes, you must have a mind like a steel trap, retain large amounts of information or at least have it on a spreadsheet and readily available.
Know who is a superior worker, who is good, who is mediocre and who should have been gone yesterday. Your boss depends upon you to know what he sometimes is too busy to find out. Keep him abreast of the latest facts, not gossip.
Make Your Boss' Job Easier
Come up with new, innovative ideas to make your boss' job easier. When he asks, "What do you think about this? Do you have any idea what we should do about that? Have you thought of anything?" he is not making small talk. He is asking for your opinion, advice and input. Do not say you do not know even if you do not know. At least say, "Let me think about that and come up with something."
Think of new, smoother, easier and more efficient ways to run your office. It could be as simple as a new filing system, a spreadsheet tracking information or how to keep Harry the hound dog from knowing when the boss is in the office, especially when the boss wants to be alone.
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