Executive Assistant Job Description

PLEASE NOTEThe sample job description below is certainly not exhaustive and simply serves as a jumping-off point for you to craft a job description that encompasses the work you do (or that you want a new Executive Assistant to do).

Things to Consider When Creating an Executive Assistant Job Description

Executive Assistants (EAs) are often considered the tactical wizard behind the curtain. But don’t confuse their tactical genius with a lack of strategic thinking. EAs are some of the most strategic individuals in an organization! Have you ever witnessed an Executive Assistant pull off a seemingly impossible trip, navigate the complexities of scheduling multiple Executives with competing demands, or save the day minutes before an event? Yeah. That’s all strategy, planning, extreme resourcefulness, and, of course, tactics.

All Executive Assistants, Chiefs of Staff, and their Executives employ tactics and strategy on a daily basis. They are each simply working on different parts of one big, important, high impact job.

Qualities of the Executive Assistant Role

When detailing your Executive Assistant job description, it’s important to remember that EAs live in the now (or usually 1 week – 30 days out). Again, this doesn’t mean they aren’t planning for future events, travel, or chipping away at longer-term projects, it simply means their work is driven by the demands of the day and week—meeting prep, handling phone calls, emails, and visitors, scheduling, answering questions that come into the Executive Office, keeping the CEO on track and on time, managing and organizing files and information, researching, preparing travel, etc.

A successful EA thrives in a supportive leadership role. They are organized and highly detail-oriented and enjoy handling administrative tasks. They are an exceptional communicator, a high performer, and can handle a high volume of work with a sense of urgency, without letting quality slip. An Executive Assistant usually prefers to handle small (though no less important), highly detailed, urgent tasks, one after the other.

One other point to consider when crafting your Executive Assistant’s job description is whether you expect your EA to handle personal affairs as well as business affairs. Some EAs only work on the business, while a Personal Assistant, or the Executive herself/himself, handles the personal life of the leader. And still other times there is overlap and one person fulfills both roles. I do think this is fairly common, and as long as the individual is aware of the expectations and agrees to them, I see no issue with one person handling both (at least until the role becomes too much for one person to handle!). The key is clarity.

The Executive Assistant as a Force Multiplier

Just like the Chief of Staff role, the Executive Assistant position is one of the more difficult roles to define. Regardless, I like to think of an Executive Assistant as a Force Multiplier; the right hand to a leader; the strategic partner that helps a leader build and run a wildly successful business. Yes, this sounds an awful lot like the definition of a Chief of Staff, but when both positions exist together in a company, the leader, Chief, and EA form a powerful trifecta, where all three are acting as strategic partners. And what leader, Founder, or CEO would turn down two right hands, as long as there were clear lanes and lines of communication?

While the day to day responsibilities of an Executive Assistant vary greatly across leaders, companies, and industries, I believe that the role generally focuses on a few main categories, which you will likely want to include in your job description in some way or another:

  1. Calendar management (including managing the flow of the day)
  2. Travel logistics and management
  3. Meeting preparation, management and follow-up
  4. Project management
  5. Event planning and management
  6. Energy management for the Executive
  7. Information management

Sample Executive Assistant Job Description

Summary:

The Executive Assistant is a high-visibility strategic partner that supports the Founder or CEO in managing the day-to-day administration and operations of the Executive Office. The Executive Assistant also provides support and management of all of the Founder’s personal and business affairs. The Executive Assistant lives in the now, and develops and streamlines systems and processes to ensure the efficiency of projects and effectiveness of communication across the organization.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Manage all personal affairs for Founder including, but not limited to: booking personal appointments, reservations, travel arrangements for friends and family, purchasing gifts, running errands, and maintaining personal files
  • Manage and maintain the Founder’s calendar
  • Manage all personal and business travel for the Founder
  • Facilitate personal bill payment and expense reports, and liaise between the Executive Office and Controller
  • Oversee general Executive Office management, including troubleshooting and fixing any issues with phones, computers, printer/copiers
  • Research people, events, companies, etc. and report to Founder/Chief of Staff as needed
  • Plan and organize events such as meetings, conferences, training events, speaking engagements, business dinners, etc., including preparing all information, taking notes, and conducting follow-up as needed
  • Assist with communication (reviewing and formatting presentations, reports, etc.)
  • Field all incoming correspondence (phone calls, faxes, mail)
  • Create and maintain a physical and digital information management system and serve as the information hub of the Executive Office
  • Maintain contact database including but not limited to: vendors, Founder’s personal contacts, potential event hosts, potential sponsors, potential podcast partnerships, business partners, etc.
  • Manage Founder’s 1-1 coaching client calls and contracts
  • Prioritizes items that need the Founder’s attention
  • Acts as eyes and ears for the leadership team, make recommendations as needed
  • Assist Chief of Staff with special projects as needed

Resources for Building Your Career as a Chief of Staff or Hiring for this Position

For more information on the Executive Assistant role and to check out the resources I used in writing this post about the Executive Assistant job description, click on the links below.

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