Career Story: Executive Assistant At A Large Real Estate Company

Executive Assistant At A Large Real Estate Company

Job Title: Executive Administrative Assistant

Type of Company: My company owns real estate franchises. We sell our franchise names to real estate owners wishing to be associated with a large international name.

Education: University of Alabama (attended)

Previous Experience: Prior to taking my current job, I worked in an architect's office as a business development associate. Before that I worked as an executive assistant in several different branches of a large corporation.

Job Tasks: I work for the executive vice president of franchise sales and do most of his grunt work, freeing him up to complete deals. My responsibilities include arranging his calendar - scheduling meetings, organizing his sales teams and handling day-to-day activities. I am responsible for incoming and outgoing mail, answering phones and prioritizing incoming sales calls and sales meetings. I complete monthly travel and expense reports for him and review and approve the expense reports for the sales team as a whole, handling everyone's travel arrangements, including car service and hotel. I also monitor the department's budget and its sales forecasts. I help to introduce new hires to the job and see to it that they're supplied with work stations, software, cell phones and network access.

I also organize training for the sales team. I coordinate VIP tours for reps who want to have prospects pay a visit to our company or attend a presentation. I organize vacation schedules and sick time while keeping an eye on attendance. I organize the sales team's conference calls and maintain the organizational charts and sales territory maps. And, finally, I compose all sales pipeline reports and target-market reports for upper management.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is that the day gets so crazy that time goes by quickly. I interact on a daily basis with all levels of management. I speak to people from all around the world. I enjoy organizing a sales team conference or VIP tours.

The worst part of m job? I don't like reviewing travel and expense reports. I have to go line by line to ensure that amounts have been entered correctly and adhere to our company's policy. This is a long, boring and repetitive process.

Job Tips: I enjoy being an executive assistant. It doesn't sound glamorous but when you work for the right person you know everything you do is appreciated. Of course, you need good organizational skills, and common sense and an ability to manage your time are both a must. You also have to be prepared for the times when your boss has had a rough day and takes it out on you without intending to. In short, you need to be thick-skinned. Apart from these temperamental qualifications, it doesn't hurt to be a good typist, and computer knowledge is a must. You should have also have a good grasp of grammar and know the rules for the English language. You must be flexible and patient, understanding and firm: a jack of all trades but a master of none.

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