It’s always great to learn from others who have “been there, done that”! We’ve gathered up the top tips from some of our experienced candidates in PA jobs in London, so that newbie PAs can benefit from their know-how.
1. Set your priorities
Nicole says, “Set your priorities. Most of your work life is about organising and prioritising someone else, so there’s no getting away from the fact that you need to be ultra-organised yourself. Make checklists your friend, and always keep an overview of the work you need to do and the different priorities of different tasks. Revise your checklists and priorities frequently. If you need to work on your time management, then get yourself on a course pronto!”
2. Don’t procrastinate
Dave tells us: “Don’t procrastinate—just start. Tasks seem harder when you’re not actually cracking on with them. Even if you don’t know where to start, just start! In PA roles, simple tasks have a nasty habit of snowballing into huge tasks if you don’t just crack on and do them. For example, not booking a meeting room when you plan the meeting will cause you a massive headache later on.”
3. Keep your boss in the loop
Petra explains, “Your boss isn’t a mind reader, but they do want to be able to trust you. A lot of what you do in PA jobs is also almost invisible (if you do it well). So, you’re going to have to take the initiative and keep your boss in the loop of what you’re up to. Don’t overload them, but do give them a quick rundown of what you’re doing every day—it helps them value you, too.”
4. Ask for help
Lucille says, “When you’re new is the easiest time to ask for help, but never stop asking for input if you need it. Ask for help and for feedback—it helps you do a great job, earn respect, and be trusted.”
5. Know what’s going on
Camilla tells us, “It’s your responsibility to have some idea of what’s going on in the business and industry. It’s also your responsibility to have insight into things your executive is working on. This can help you predict what your executive will need in certain situations. You don’t need to do your executive’s job, obviously, but you do need to understand what they are doing and how their role fits into the organisation as a whole.”
6. Learn your boss’ preferences
Ashleigh shares with us: “Bother to learn what your boss likes and dislikes. When is their favourite meeting time? What days do they have tricky childcare? How can you tell if they are stressed? Ask questions, but try to pick up on their unspoken communication, too. It builds a really good relationship and helps reduce your stress as well.”
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