Have you ever spent a day out of the house only to return and wonder where all your cash from your wallet or purse went? Our spending habits have evolved and changed over the years. The first universal credit card, which could be used at a variety of establishments, was introduced by the Diners’ Club, Inc. in 1950 and this dramatically changed the way people spend money.
Now you can spend money without actually passing money over and the use of ‘plastic’ means there is less ’emotional’ connection to money.
Great Britain is famous for many things. It’s famous for the Royal Family, Yorkshire puddings and, of course, rain. In fact, Guinea, Solomon Islands and Sierra Leone are ranked in the top three in regards to maximum annual rainfall, with Great Britain falling far behind.
But in many countries around the world, when it rains, we sit in our homes and offices, staring out the window at the wet weather, and put our list of errands on hold. Sure, rain it’s great for nature, but not so much for our Hermes handbags!
Heavy rain and storms are common around the world, but life has to go on. You might be faced with a number of errands which simply have to do be completed come rain or shine.
Having a PA, either in a corporate setting or in your private household, can make an enormous difference to your productivity levels and the overall running of your business or household. Some people are not aware of the extent of the tasks that PA’s can do, and how they could be applicable to any corporate or home situation.
Who Could Employ a Personal Assistant?
Firstly, let’s have a look at where PA’s could be needed. People mostly assume that Personal Assistants are for the corporate sector – whether this is working directly for a manager or CEO, or working within a team of assistants and administrators.
However, is it becoming increasingly normal for a busy household to hire a Personal Assistant. You do not have to own a large estate or palace – even small, but busy, hardworking families are turning to the help of a Personal Assistant, either on a part time or full time basis.
Life can be hectic. Work can definitely be hectic. In fact, typically many people find themselves wishing they had more hours in the day to undertake tasks which need to be done. They might not always be vital business tasks such as closing a big deal for a client, but they might be important in other aspects of your busy life.
For example, sending the birthday card to your mother-in-law or ensuring your latest set of invoices are posted to your accountant. Whatever the tasks are, if you find yourself needing more hours in the day to undertake these duties, you are probably in need of a personal assistant.
But what does a personal assistant do? And like many others, are you asking yourself – “do I need a personal assistant?’ If so, read on.
‘Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.‘ Forest Gump
Indeed Forest was right, life can be varied and exciting, and the difference in people means no two are the same. Human beings are, well….human. Unlike a robot or machine, we don’t follow prescribed patterns. Yet humans are creatures of habit, and during the recruitment process, it’s possible to easily identify ‘red flags’, as the industry calls them.
How do you develop this ‘red flag’ odometer? Well, that’s an industry secret. But if you’re looking to know how to find a good personal assistant, then we can tell you the 10 key qualities that a good personal assistant should have, and should demonstrate in an interview and trial period, to ensure you end up with the right person for the right job.
“No one is more cherished in this world than someone who lightens the burden of another. Thank you.” Joseph Addison
We’ve seen them in the press, the PA or EA dutifully next to their principal, celebrity, CEO, ready to act to ensure that every matter is handled. But unless you happen to be a celebrity or on the millionaire (or billionaire) list, how does having a PA make any difference? Yes, a PA will allow you to focus on the ‘important’ tasks (from business through to family time), but are they really worth their weight in gold?
It was a defining moment in my life, when I realised that my working life had overtaken my personal life. My son had just turned 2, and I was sat on a beautiful beach in Majorca. As I looked into the azure waters and watched my son and husband play, I realised that I had missed a number of wonderful moments of his growth.
Now I’m not one for regret, and in my working life, I’ve built various companies. My most recent company, about to reach the same age as my son, was doing exceptionally well, with growth and development in all the right places. My journey to working success was not easy, and I knew the path ahead was still a rocky one – but I felt a great deal of contentment with the knowledge I was on the right path.
Deciding to hire a personal assistant is a big step, and when you’ve found the right person, can make an enormous difference to your work and personal life. The sole purpose of a PA is to alleviate pressures and unneeded tasks so you can focus on more important things at hand, either at work or in your personal life or both!
Finding the perfect match is crucial. The right personal assistant is like a butler – they would need very little guidance, will sense what you need before you might have even thought of it, and will make sure everything is running smoothly. The PA needs to be completely in sync with your work or personal life habits and your preferences.
We know from experience how difficult it can be to find the right person who not only has the suited qualifications, but also the skills to fulfill the role. To help you find the perfect PA, we have listed 8 key personal assistant interview questions to ask new candidates during the recruitment process.
In today’s job market, there are thousands of PAs and EAs. They serve as the gateway to their principal, office, CEO, surgeon or business person they assist.
Although there are qualifications in personal assisting, many candidates don’t have formal qualifications, instead, building their experience as they move from position to position. So when you start to look for a new personal assistant, what should you be looking for in order to get a great personal assistant on the first hire? Read on to learn how to find a personal assistant in four easy steps.
Hiring a new PA for your office or family is an exciting process, but can often be a tiring one too. Firstly, to find the right candidate that would deem to be suitable for the role, then to go through the process of reading, selecting and rejecting CVs, spending a lot of valuable time interviewing people, and finally, making sure to ask the right questions for referees.
Why Check References?
A mistake that many people make when selecting a new PA, is not completing a full recruitment process. It can feel natural to offer someone the job who has a great CV, excellent educational background and where the connection felt ‘right’. However, to get a complete idea of the candidate, reference checking is crucial.
Firstly, let’s talk a little bit about the different types of references and what to expect.
The concept of outsourcing is a phrase and term borrowed from the business world. Much like a contractor who will step in to do a business task (whenever the business might need additional support), outsourcing on a personal level to outsource daily tasks is becoming more popular. The famous book ‘A Housekeeper is Cheaper than Divorce‘ sums up the outsourcing point perfectly.
Personal outsourcing for your family life and needs is an extremely valuable thing to do. It frees up your time to focus on other more valuable or important tasks. So how does personal outsourcing work? What can you actually outsource in order to get more of your precious time back?