Personal Assistant

A personal assistant holds a very important position in any organization and if he/she knows what to do right and does it right an entity can flourish. There is a lot of responsibility that goes into it and one has to not only be, a fast learner but also an open learner, an emotionally stable person and one who thinks on their feet. Other attributes may include personal values and understanding of the job description. Some skills needed to be an effective personal assistant are;

  1. Good Interpersonal Skills – A good PA is unflustered under pressure.

They are calm and able to think on their feet. The ability to work well with others, and more particularly with difficult personalities.  Interpersonal skills are very critical for every PA. More often than not, a PA will find herself/ or himself in the front line dealing with so many clients or personal friends to the boss, having good interpersonal skills will go a long way in maintaining those relationships.

Good Communication Skills –

The ability to influence people is a must have quality for an effective PA. A PA’s find themselves with the responsibility of negotiating with others for time and resources. Good written communication skills are necessary because PA’s often respond to communications on behalf of their boss., and sometimes write reports and executive summaries.

  1. Good IT Skills –

A good corporate Personal Assistant is expected to have the following IT skills: Microsoft Word (Advanced); Microsoft Excel (Intermediate); Microsoft PowerPoint (Advanced); a good working knowledge of an email package like Microsoft Outlook, Lotus Notes, or Eudora.

  1. Good Internet Skills –

PA’s should also be Internet savvy, as they may be required to do research or perform tasks that require a good knowledge of the Internet environment.

  1. Have an Interest in Office Technology –

PA’s should keep abreast of the latest office gadgets and technology as they are expected to know how to fix the office photocopier and understand the features on the boss’s Blackberry. A good PA will recommend changes in office technology to improve efficiency.

  1. Have the Necessary Skills to:

Monitor the boss’s email and respond on their behalf; delegate work on the boss’s behalf; manage the boss’s electronic diary; take dictation; prepare papers for meetings; in short be an all round person.

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