09 May 2018

Improving your soft skills as an executive assistant

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Executive assistants continue to be in high demand, especially those with strong technical and soft skills. But what exactly ARE soft skills?

Your soft skills include your personality traits or character traits, your interpersonal skills and your social skills. They are intangible, less measurable, and not so easy to observe.

However, you can detect soft skills in an individual by observing their behaviour, how well they interact with others, and their ability to effectively lead others.

So, let’s have a moment of self-reflection. Do you have good people skills?  Do you have good leaderships skills?  How about communication skills?  

Some examples of the key soft skills that make for a killer EA are:
  •     Attention to details
  •     Common sense
  •     Active listening 
  •     Flexible personality
  •     Strong communication
  •     Time management
  •     Project management
  •     Curiosity

If you have any doubt that soft skills matter, just think about some of the most successful administrative staff you know. Chances are, they all have strong people skills – they’re excellent communicators and adept leaders, and they seem to have the magic touch when it comes to getting things done. They also have a knack for problem solving and negotiation and always exercise sound judgment.

The good news for those people who feel they may not possess these soft skills is that they – just like hard skills – can be developed over time. All that is required is a commitment to learning these skills, a willingness to acknowledge the areas where you may be lacking and education. Indeed, some workplaces are more than willing to help employees strengthen their soft skills.

Soft skills will continue to be a big factor in the success of administrative professionals. If you make the effort and take the time to improve your interpersonal skills at work, there’s a good chance it will pay off in advancement opportunities! 
Still interested? Stay tuned for information on the upcoming 5th Public Sector EA/PA Summit by following us on Facebook @ Akolade Aust 
Written by: Beth Hampton
I came to Australia in late 2016, having spent some time travelling through Southeast Asia and briefly living in Singapore – I was ready to embrace the lifestyle of a working Sydneysider!
I grew up in London, and completed my degree in Psychology at the University of York. I always dreamed of landing a job in the police, but figured it was worth swapping the handcuffs and late shifts for an exciting new city and a job full of fun and opportunity in a fantastic company like Akolade!
Love cooking, playing the piano, terrible British soap operas, an ice-cold G&T and exploring new places.
Follow me on LinkedIn for information regarding future Akolade events as well as future blogs posts @ Beth Hampton

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