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Working as a Personal Assistant or Executive Assistant

Updated on December 12, 2016

I am an experienced Personal Assistant and Legal Secretary who has worked in many different countries and companies. My last job as a Personal Assistant was in London and it lasted for 5 years, which was a great job. However, I became tired of the job and sought to make a change. Furthermore, I fell pregnant and needed a more family oriented job. I looked at how I could progress my career to find something more senior or at least a more challenging role.

I was working as a Personal Assistant and it appeared that there were options to diversify my skills and learn new skills. Therefore, I looked at moving into medical and taking a medical secretary role. However, this did not really interest me when I read about the realities of it. I then considered HR, as I had encountered a lot of HR issues with my job and felt that this was an opportunity. Human resources offered a lot of chances to progress, but it did mean that I may need to work hard on gaining new knowledge. It may have even required going back to college.

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I decided to build upon my current role and pursue becoming an Executive PA. Executive PA courses were short term courses that help people gain the necessary executive abilities to deal with high level business. This would mean that my role would become a bigger picture one and I would deal with major issues rather than a more task oriented role like my current one. An Executive Assistant course is different to the task oriented PA Course that I have experienced in the past because I had to gain the necessary soft skills and management training to meet the requirement of executive level work.

The course was short term, so I was out looking for a job. I had the knowledge to be confident in an interview and taking the step up. However, I had to spend a lot of time looking at my curriculum vitae (CV) and ensuring that it was adapted to suit my career progression. I also studied the job market and looked at some job roles for an idea of how I should re-shape my work history profile. Once, I had done this I sent out my CV to all of the appropriate roles that I could find. This was a very empowering feeling and it gave me great satisfaction that I had taken on a challenge and achieved the ultimate goal. I have now gained the ideal job. I am an Executive PA to a Managing Director at an Investment Bank, but I only work 4 days a week. This is perfect as I get to see some great things that challenge my abilities and experience, but still have a day off to spend looking after my three children. I recommend that anyone who is bored in their current job reviews their current position and tries to find a goal; the next thing is you will need a plan.



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