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Santa Monica College|Student Services|Career Services Center |Etiquette Tip of the Week

Etiquette Tip of the Week

Etiquette Tip of the Week:  Don't Forget Admin Professionals Day!

Wednesday, April 27th is Administrative Professionals Day.

I remember one particularly rigorous interview process, where I returned to the company five times and met 12 different executives.

After I was hired, I asked one executive, "What was the deciding factor in hiring me over the other candidates?" He said, "My executive assistant liked you the best."

I had been upbeat and conversational. I was patient, even after a 45-minute wait for the interview. I thanked the assistant on my way out. Others were aloof with the assistant or indifferent. One grumbled at her about being kept waiting, then flashed a big, beaming smile when the executive appeared.

How do I know what the other candidates were like? After I was hired, I asked the assistant. I appreciated the information and she appreciated being recognized for her opinions and good instincts. We no longer work for the company, but we keep in touch and remain great friends.

It's good to celebrate Administrative Professionals Day with flowers, gift cards, a lunch out or a few extra hours off. But don’t just remember them this week. Celebrate them all year long.

Recognize Administrative Professionals Day, even with those who are not your direct assistants – if they help you in some way, if they pave the way for you to meet with others or answer the incoming calls that are sometimes directed your way.

Recognize administrative professionals at organizations you call on regularly. A thoughtful card or $5 gift certificate to the local coffee or lunch place will do. (Be mindful of company gifting policies.)

Whether on an interview, a sales call or even a visit to the doctor, be kind and attentive to the assistants, secretaries, receptionists, administrative professionals. They are the gatekeepers and often hold the key to your success.

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