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How to Be a More Efficient Administrative Assistant
Posted: January 4, 2018
The administrative assistant can be the engine that drives a company. If you choose this career path, you’ll do more than just answer phones and set meetings. You’ll have a lot of responsibility! You’ll have to juggle various tasks while doing your very best work. Organization, communication, and time management are some of the most important skills you’ll need to develop as an administrative assistant. If being an administrative assistant sounds like the position for you, consider the following ways you can work to improve your efficiency.
Develop a Routine
Set a routine that works well with your general schedule and you’ll become more organized. Wake up at the same time every day (early, if possible) and begin the day with exercise and breakfast. This will kick start your metabolism and fuel your body to take on the day ahead. Make daily lists of your assignments and goals so you can manage your day to the hour. Take lunch at about the same time if you can, and try to go home around the same time too. This will help establish your reliability and availability. And it will help get you mentally prepared to take on the next day ahead – or decompress from the day that just happened.
Become a Good Listener
If you’re given a task, ask a lot of questions. This will show that you heard your boss loud and clear, and help you eliminate any confusion or misunderstanding in what your boss said or in the task itself. Repeat names, dates, and activities to make sure you’re both on the same page. And minimize distractions. YES, that means putting your phone on silent or in a desk drawer, and not checking personal email or social media accounts. Personal activities should happen on personal time. Keep focused and listen up the first time and you won’t need to go back to your boss for reminders about the task you’re assigned. This will help you consistently hit deadlines.
If your company uses unfamiliar technology, spend extra time learning the ropes. Many companies will offer interactive training sessions and webinars at no cost. Start with the basics, like Microsoft Office, and see if you can work your way up to learning computer hardware and software troubleshooting techniques as well as support methods. The more technology you can learn along with becoming an efficient administrative assistant, the less time you’ll have to waste trying to figure out disruptions. And by learning shortcuts and teaching them to others, you’ll help your peers become more efficient too.
Learn About Your Company and its Industry
Learn the ins and outs of your field. If you land a job as an administrative assistant, you’ll already be privy to industry knowledge by whatever your superior delegates to you. But do your own research. Read trade publications and news articles. Visit websites during the day, and attend networking events at night. This way, you’ll be able to have a deeper understanding of your company’s overall work and your own. Become an expert in your own right and you’ll rely less on the assistance of others. Soon, you’ll be the one with the answers! You may even be able to anticipate the needs of your boss and others. Any opportunity you have to shave some time off an assignment is worth taking.
Career Quest offers Business Administration certificate and degree programs. The courses you’ll take will prepare you to become an administrative assistant who can arrange, maintain, and safeguard some of the most vulnerable work at the company in timely and efficient ways. If you’re interested in how Career Quest can help you obtain the right skillset for the right industry, visit online today to learn more about our programs, coursework, and possible financial aid opportunities.