With the recent debacle surrounding THAT job advert posted by RMS Recruitment, a company with over 15 years experience in placing candidates within support roles from newbies to the industry through to those who could do the job with their eyes closed, it has caused an absolute social media shit storm with those who are pivotal within our community reigning supreme on an opinion concerning a matter which has been more controversial than many single issues I have ever encountered from an industry perspective.
Now, let’s not be too hasty here, the contents of this article do not come from someone who has had limited experience in the PA industry, it has been my main motivation career-wise for over a decade, running the personal and business lives of some of the most formidable people within their respective industries you could encounter with everything from the organization of Bar Mitzvahs to Board meetings. The Assistant Room was created and continues to exist as it fills a gap in the market where no other PA publication/group exists – this is a lifestyle choice and not just a job. Nor is the role of Personal, Executive Assistant one that is a blanket term for us all. The Assistant Room is an online platform that specifically touches upon the lifestyle aspect of this profession as well as developing the relevant skills it takes to execute the role successfully and operates as an open platform to empower and promote the support we need to give to each other as well as the people we officially have titled in our job descriptions. Back to RMS before we move on, if you are in the dark about the topic of which the related drama has recently gone down, check it out below –
Yes, typo’s and yes quite a controversial take on a job ad but freedom of speech is a wonderful thing and a genuine opinion is a valued opinion, however, not to share that opinion is an equal right. To say I was more than disappointed to see the misdirected energy following on from this recent topic of discussion was not a new feeling, it just further strengthened the attraction of global negative and damaging attention towards the most inspirational and empowering group of people who I regularly surround myself with at events, both learning and networking.
It is an open fact, that this industry is one of the most powerful in the world so why is an attitude of being ‘hard done by’ or unappreciated in the workplace the moment you set your foot across the threshold so actively promoted as an attitude we should all welcome with open arms? Why is there such a spotlight on the issues that you automatically face as a male PA and classed as a minority when 32% of our readers are guys? To be witness to such an approach taken by those who speak on behalf of an industry which a portion of already feels heavily misrepresented, and it’s taken as gospel?
Not only are we dragging our own names through the mud and providing a platform to those who we are told to follow but through the encouragement of distaste towards our industry from brands who think we attend networking events for the free champagne…this personality that the PA is labelled with has not happened by accident.
Times are changing.
No, as a PA I don’t want to listen to someone who has no experience in this job tell me how to run someone’s diary. No, I don’t want to sit and watch someone point to a screen and tell me how to use Outlook. I want to learn how to develop my personal and business skills to become an ambassador for my boss and the company I work for. I want to learn how to add strategy and game-changing ideas to help evolve my team. I want to be surrounded by inspirational and empowering people who stick their middle finger up to anyone who just doesn’t get it. I want to know about the best new venues in the city and brands to work with not only for my colleagues during their next outing but also for my next weekend brunch. I want to learn how to conduct myself like a pro when public speaking on behalf of my boss to make everyone in the audience jealous of what I get to call my job. Is it an opinion shared by all? No. Is it shared by some? Yes.
Do I think moaning is the best way to eliminate ignorance rather than educating people on how much impact we make on a business on a daily basis? No. Do I want to find a solution and start showing why we are an industry that is respected? Yes. It’s why The Assistant Room and a rare few other groups exist and we’re going nowhere…