Every assistant role is unique, impacted by the leader you support, your unique skill set, and the relationship you build together. What this means: the EA role is rife with opportunity. With no set executive assistant career path in place, EAs are in a unique position to disrupt the system and bring their own magic to their job description — and beyond.
We recently spoke with Llewellyn Gravely, Lead EABP to the Global Head of Uber for Business, to discuss how ze turned zis passion for diversity and inclusion into becoming a change agent on a global scale for Uber — and shared strategies for how executive assistants can take charge of their career and make it their own.
Find and follow your passion ⭐
The first step of carving out your career path is to figure out what your end goal is. Ask yourself, where do you want to be in 5 years? What are your biggest passions? From there, you can start to work backwards. For example, if you hope to end up in a Chief of Staff position, you should invest in understanding business, financial planning, spreadsheets, and similar skills. First, figure out what your path is, and then start strategizing the steps or skills you’ll need to get there.
Be assertive in your areas of expertise 💬
One thing many executive assistants struggle with in their career path is standing up for themselves and their own career goals. Remember, there is very little you can break within your role. It is better to try and fail than to always ask for permission or never take action. Every other job function is confident in their expertise, so you should be, too. Never be afraid to raise your hand. Ask questions. Speak up for your point of view as it pertains to your job function.
Expand outside of your role 📚
Because there is not always a clear job progression framework, executive assistants often find themselves reaching the “pinnacle” of their career earlier than others. When this happens, it’s important to look for ways that you can continue to expand and grow your skill set, especially if you don’t wish to switch companies or roles. For example, you could look to optimize your communications with a tool like Base’s Digest feature, or start picking up some additional responsibilities where you see opportunities, such as with hiring or project management.
Ready to take your executive assistant career path to the next level?
At Base, we’re all about helping strategic assistants do their best work. Our app was built solely for assistants’ daily workflow so you can utilize your time more efficiently and support your leader more effectively. Base is a single place for you to create executive briefings, field emails, track projects, manage calendars, and more.