Ask Away Blog: What No One Tells You About Being an Administrative Assistant

What No One Tells You About Being an Administrative Assistant

Friday, August 7, 2020



Administrative positions never get the credit they should.   People in these positions quite literally run an office.  If you don't believe me just imagine if the clerical and admin workers in your office all quit on the same day with no warning.  Would everything still function and flow as usual? I doubt it.  I decided to write about the stuff no one tells you when it comes to being an admin in any field.


It's exhausting. 

When you are an admin you are constantly multitasking and splitting your attention everywhere.  You may be typing correspondence and then the phone rings while someone stands at your desk to interrupt and ask you a question.  Concentrating on something for more than 20 minutes is very rare. When your brain has to constantly go from subject to subject it wears you down A LOT.   That's why you can get home from work physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted. 

Everyone interrupts you. 
Like I said above, you will always be interrupted.  It just comes with the territory.  Your cubicle is probably in a more open area with less privacy anyways so when someone is lost and makes their way to your office, you're the first place they go.  When a copier or printer is acting up, you're the first hero your colleagues see to ask for help. 

You keep the office running, really. 
You're the one that does all the little minute details that others don't even know exist. You keep up to date on all the latest procedures and processes and you are constantly keeping everything flowing in and out.  If you were to disappear off the face of the earth, your office would crash.  Eventually it would be okay but the first few weeks would be pure chaos as everyone struggles to pick up your duties or figure out how things are done. 

You deserve higher pay. 
Here's the thing - you are so essential and you are probably the lowest paid and that's just how it goes.  So make sure you don't take any crap from anyone because the least your colleagues can do for you is appreciate and acknowledge your hard work.  You get the crappy jobs like stuffing envelopes and shredding your fingers with paper cuts.  You have to answer the phones and deal with rude people.  You have to herd cats when you try to gather info for an assignment from your boss that requires responses from everyone in the office.  You go Glen Coco! 

You aren't "JUST" a secretary, you're an office manager.
You quite literally manage an entire office. Without you, things will crumble.  You're not just a clerical worker, you're an important member of the team and many times you're acknowledge as the second in command under the big boss.  You should never down play your role in any office. 

The skills you bring to the table are life skills. 
Knowing how to organize meetings, keep up on regular tasks, and dealing with people with customer service are all basic life skills that many people can't handle.  It will make you wonder how some of your colleagues survive at home when it comes to bills and stuff like that.

 Don't ever downplay your role.  You are so important.  Don't believe me? Call off sick for a couple days and watch how much work you come back to because no one else can do what you do.  



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