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Being an assistant can be a tough job, depending on who you work for.  Some bosses expect their assistants to do everything, while others give you free rein on how you accomplish your tasks.

You may face additional pressure if you have backstabbing co-workers, demanding clients or a narcissistic boss with unreasonable expectations like Miranda in “The Devil wears Prada.” However, certain habits can make your work easier, allow you to meet your objectives more quickly, and boost your professional success.

Here are eight habits that can help you rise into the position of being a highly effective assistant. 

  1. Always start tasks before they’re due

Do your boss a favor and double-check that all of their requirements are addressed ahead of time. That way, you won’t have to worry about forgetting anything, and they can be assured that their tasks will be completed ahead of time; way before the deadline.

  1. Establish yourself as a valuable resource to your boss by anticipating his/her needs

 Everyone wants their work done quickly, efficiently, and correctly. If you have this mind-set, it will be easier for you to expect what your boss requires before he asks.  In the long run, you will be perceived as reliable and respected by your boss.

  1. Be proactive about distractions

Your most valuable asset as an assistant is your time. While you need to balance your work with distractions, distractions are often just that-distractions. When you have a task at hand, focus on it and finish it before doing anything else. If someone interrupts you, and the task isn’t important or urgent, ask them if it can wait until you’re done or come back later.

  1. Keep your boss informed, but don’t get in their way

It can be tough to get a hold of your boss sometimes, especially if they’re extremely busy. However, try not to pester them or bombard them with unnecessary questions all day because you’ll risk annoying them and will hinder their productivity.

  1. Keep a positive attitude

Maintaining a positive attitude can make your job much more enjoyable. Don’t let setbacks get you down. If there’s a problem that seems insurmountable, think about ways to solve it positively instead of focusing on negative thoughts. Remember that when you a radiate positive attitude, others will reflect your positivity.

  1. Follow through with your promises

When you tell your boss that something will get done, make sure that it happens. If they have a habit of being lenient when you don’t follow through with the promises that you’ve made, then eventually they’ll stop believing you and won’t trust what you say anymore. Always keep your word and follow through.

  1. Be open to advice

Always be willing to consider advice from your boss, no matter how great the disparity between their position and yours may be. Listening to them shows that you respect what they think and care about their input since they’re an expert in their field. Honesty is crucial as well!

  1. Be punctual to work

A habit of coming in late affects not only work productivity and workflow but is also unprofessional. Consistent late coming may be construed as a sign of disrespect for your boss or the organisation.

What habit resonates with you most? Which habit do you currently practice and which would you incorporate into your current work routine to increase your productivity?

Share any successes that arise from implementing these principles. We would love to hear from you.

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