Various knowledge and skills are important for the efficient execution of the executive secretariat activity. In addition, factors such as loyalty, confidentiality, responsibility and ethics are essential requirements.
Executive secretariat and ethics
The Ecuadorian author and executive secretary Blanca Iturralde affirms that a true executive secretariat professional, in any area of knowledge, in addition to the theoretical and technical knowledge acquired, can only be considered as such, insofar as he develops as an integral individual, and also uses the indispensable resources of knowledge based on fundamental ethical values such as: honesty, justice, equity, loyalty and respect for the trust granted by the service contractor. It is about exercising a high level of responsibility.
The ethical principles that executive secretary professionals must know and have must value loyalty to the company, directors, co-workers and even to themselves, adds Blanca Iturralde.
The profile of the executive secretarial professional
Luciana Marson, Brazilian author and specialist in executive secretariat, describes the profile of the professional, who, according to her, must have remarkable characteristics, such as good training, ethics, commitment to work, personal presentation, patience, good humor, ability to work under pressure , manage conflicts, organization, good verbal fluency, flexibility, emotional maturity, dynamism and excellent domain in microcomputers. Professionals must always keep up to date, whether through books, websites and magazines or through courses, concludes Luciana Marson.
The Angolan leader Lanvu Anael, also a specialist in executive secretariat, says that the executive secretariat professional must have knowledge, skill, attitude, know how to speak, write, master foreign languages and secretarial skills. Lanvu Anael adds that the professional is the image of the institution and the link between the person in charge of the company, colleagues and the public.
The executive assistant professional complements the CEO’s senses of sight and hearing, says Indian executive Anant Goenka. “The executive assistant needs to be thorough about the fundamentals of running a business. And since the learning curve is
extremely high, it is often a stepping stone to greater responsibilities”, concludes Anant Goenka.
The activities of the executive secretariat professional
Brazilian human resources consultant Consuelo Fradique points out: “The professional executive secretary no longer performs only support tasks, but complements activities. He is a strategic piece, as he acts as the information manager of the company and its executive. He has to be someone who moves easily through all sectors of the organization and knows how to delegate responsibilities to the right people. They are professionals who work together with the management, board, vice presidency and presidency of the companies.”
The Brazilian executive coach Eva Hirsch adds: “It is necessary to understand that delegating tasks does not mean letting go of them, but giving up the details. In other words, you delegate the task, not the responsibility.”
For Paulo Eduardo Lacerda, a Brazilian professor of administration, with economic globalization, business from one country to another, from one region to another, all these changes in world market relations made professionals need to play different roles and, consequently, new skills, such as knowledge of different languages, knowing how to relate and providing quality advice to executives. “Very different from the stereotype of the secretary who took dictation, typed and received visitors”, says professor Paulo Lacerda.
Angolan Egas Moniz, mentor and trainer of executive secretariat, says: “Some authors believe that the secretarial profession has evolved greatly over time. In fact, what happened is only the recognition and materialization of the different secretarial levels, that is, there is only the possibility of career progression. Even because the tasks of junior secretaries continue to be the traditional ones…”
From receptionist to executive secretary
The Swedish political scientist and author Maja Stilling tells how in a short time she went from receptionist to executive secretary at the Plantagon company.
Plantagon is a Swedish company that works with the cultivation of agriculture in greenhouses in urban environments.
In June 2012, Maja graduated in political science and sociology from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, in the United States. Quickly, about two months later, she was hired as a receptionist by Plantagon in Stockholm, Sweden. Then, just two months later, Maja Stilling became an executive secretary to work directly with the company’s CEO.
Maja believes she got this position due to the extensive international experience she gained through studies and travel. As the company works a lot internationally, her English language skills were a factor of great importance. The fact that Maja found it fun to learn would also have been important.
Maja Stilling doesn’t think she would have been called for an interview if it weren’t for her international college education and training. While the job interview afterward focused more on soft skills, she believes formal merits were crucial to getting to the next step.
In addition to the receptionist position at Plantagon, Maja has also applied for different positions at other companies, and has included her resume in the database of some recruitment companies.
For Maja Stilling, job interviews can make candidates very nervous. With that, she thinks that the personal cover letter is very important and a good complement to the resume, as it gives the candidate the chance to describe himself in his own voice, without being in a position of pressure.
From executive secretariat to other positions
The professional may want to remain in the executive secretariat position for a long time. In fact, some professionals prefer to remain in the activity and have longevity in the position.
Others, however, prefer to seek new positions after a while. And there are also opportunities for that.
On executive secretarial roles, Dipak Gupta, an Indian executive, believes they are very challenging and offer a high degree of visibility for young talent in large organizations.
According to Indian executive Rajeev Dubey, the executive secretarial position is a great training ground for professionals, but most companies make them switch to a line job after two or three years.
Valuing the executive secretariat
Ken Blanchard, American author, business consultant and speaker, thinks that some executives don’t realize that professional assistants are their partners. They are an extension of executives and give them the ability to do much more.
Ana Paula Marques, specialist in executive secretariat, author and Portuguese leader, highlights the importance of executive secretariat in companies. “With the evolution of times and the demands of the job market, the secretarial professional gained new tasks, increased his responsibilities within the company, became a professional capable of thinking strategically and not just a respecter of orders and requests from managers. .”