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Take your EA skills to the next level: advice from Megan Green, 2016 EA of the Year
The 2016 Page Personnel EA of the Year, Megan Green, is Executive Assistant to the Executive Director Information Development, eTQC Program Director, and Chief Medical Information Officer, at Alfred Health in Victoria.
Megan won the award thanks to the transformative initiatives she has implemented at her workplace – including the introduction of an efficient mobile app, improvements to information management strategies, and the coordination of corporate leadership sessions.
Here are Megan’s tips for succeeding as an executive assistant.
Be proud of your role
Being an executive assistant is not just administrative – you are there as a sounding board to offer advice and support to your manager. You’ll most likely even be there to help guide your manager through some tough business decisions, so your role as an EA is crucial to the success of the organisation.
Look after your manager personally and professionally
Supporting your executive means being there for them on a personal level as well as professional – so make sure that they eat, drink water, and have time to take care of their most important tasks.
Keeping your manager’s wellbeing in check will require you to have exceptional organisational skills, be loyal, committed to your job, and have a strong work ethic. It will also mean occasionally making sacrifices for the benefit of your manager and the business.
Stay current and innovative
Take the initiative to learn about leadership, strategic planning, and emotional intelligence, so you’re well positioned to handle any challenges that come your way. To be a truly successful EA, you will need to stay current and be technologically savvy – so study, find a mentor, and keep learning.
Always make up your own mind about situations based on your own experiences and interactions, rather than through office gossip. Stay away from office conflicts, and don’t let others’ opinions about people or circumstances taint your own.
To be truly successful, you will need to stay current and be technologically savvy – so study, find a mentor, and keep learning on your path to being an exceptional EA.
Learn to overcome challenges
Challenges are inevitable in the workplace, so equip yourself to handle obstacles through staying organised, communicating clearly, and being confident in your approach. Staying calm and in control during a crisis can go a long way toward diffusing the situation and solving the problem.
And when mistakes do happen, let them go – we all make them, and losing sleep over them doesn’t help anyone. Just be sure to learn from them and endeavour not to repeat them.
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To succeed as an executive assistant, Megan says you should:
- Be proud of your job – it’s not just admin
- Make sure your manager is supported professionally and personally
- Keep learning and stay current
- Form your own opinions, rather than relying on others
- Learn how to deal with challenges, and let mistakes go