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​4 simple steps to becoming a high-performing EA

Published on 1st February 2030

​The highest performing EAs know that they need to be at the top of their game at all times if they want to be successful.

Here are a few simple steps you can take which will really impress your boss and help propel your career forward.

1. Make yourself indispensable

If you want to be the very best EA then make sure that you really understand your boss and what he or she needs from you.

What can you do on a daily basis to make his/her life easier? Pre-empt your boss’ needs and make sure that you are always a few steps ahead. Don’t leave him/her wanting for anything. Ensure that you have full access to your boss’ diary and if you can, have full control of it too.

Top notch organisational skills are essential so use all the technology available to you to help you stay on top of your workload. Use your own outlook calendar and CRM databases to set reminders and prompts relating to your boss’ schedule and if you are able to have mobile access to your diary and emails then get it – just try and give yourself a cut off time so that you’re not checking emails late into the night!

Also, remember to communicate regularly with your boss – let him/her know what is happening and what you are doing.

2. Be your boss' eyes and ears

Who are your boss’ clients? What is happening with them at the moment, have there been any reports about them in the press? Pick up City AM on your way into work and/or subscribe to industry magazines - you may find out some interesting facts that you can highlight to your boss and you can guarantee that this will earn you brownie points.

An EA who shows a genuine interest and a desire to understand what their boss is working on is a real asset. Think about it, you are an Executive Assistant, the key being the word Assistant – you are there to assist your boss.

3. Go the extra mile

Is it a disaster if you have to work later than 5.30? Gone are the days of working to rule and if you want an easy 9 - 5.30pm job then being a high performing EA might not be the right career for you. You have to be flexible if you want to succeed in this job - working later than 5.30pm or coming in slightly early might actually make your current day or the next day easier for you and any pre-planning you can do the night before is always a bonus.

Most bosses will often work a longer day than their employees and whilst they certainly don’t expect you to match their hours, the more flexibility you can show (especially when your boss has urgent deadlines to meet) the stronger the relationship with your boss will be. A good working relationship with your boss = a much easier and more pleasant working week!

4. Importantly, make sure you get some 'me' time

Whilst your boss might be a workaholic, it certainly doesn’t mean you have to be, so make sure you take time for a break when you need one. You have holiday entitlement for a good reason and burning out and getting stressed won’t help anyone in the long run.

Plan something nice to look forward to, whether it be a week lounging in the sun, a long weekend with family or friends or simply turning the alarm clock off for a few days, just to give you time to switch off and recharge your batteries so that when you go back to work you will be back on top of your game and the high performing EA your boss feels lucky to have!

If you are ready to progress to the next level in your Business Support career, take a look at our latest Business Support job vacancies here >