You’ve made it!
You’re a successful VIP, an executive in a high-level position at a top-rated company, or maybe an entrepreneur.
You spend most days meeting with big-name clients or building relationships to acquire new ones. You’ve developed exceptional skills for putting together the best presentations and proposals to drive business and increase revenues.
But let me ask you a question?
Do you do this alone? Or do you have help?
Most accomplished executives I know have a trusted assistant by their side to quietly and unobtrusively make them look good. Exceptional ones are hard to find. And they’re even harder to keep. While you may have a long list of credentials proving otherwise, it’s quite possible you’re not as smart as you think if you’ve ever done any of these things and ticked off your assistant:
- Forgot your manners. Think about it, have you ever greeted your assistant by spouting out directions instead of “hello”? When was the last time you said “please” or “thank you”? Do you always use the intercom or have you been guilty of yelling her name out the door? Simple gestures perhaps, but ignoring common courtesies can be insulting and demeaning.
- Do-overs. Your assistant expects that some changes can’t be avoided, but don’t be one of those bosses who changes his mind about everything at the last minute. She may make the job look easy, but every task requires a significant amount of time and coordination. Whether it’s a plane reservation or a client proposal, throwing an offhanded do-over at her regularly is disrespectful and likely to tick her off.
- Keeping appointments waiting. As a busy executive, there are going to be many scheduling conflicts. Your assistant will spend countless hours attempting to organize your day efficiently and accurately. Every time you’re late, she’ll be put in the unenviable position of making excuses for you or start the process again in rescheduling.
- Micromanaging. In order for the partnership to operate efficiently, you must allow your assistant to complete the tasks assigned in the order and manner she sees fit. When you ask about the status of a project five minutes after you’ve given it to her, or worse, take care of it yourself, you’re saying you don’t trust her to do the job right.
- Overuse technology. Advances in technology have blurred the lines between our business and personal lives. While you may pay your assistant to be available whenever you need her, she really won’t appreciate you texting her while she’s grocery shopping or putting her child to bed. Try to respect her personal time, and she’ll be more focused on handling whatever you need during business hours.
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