How to address Admin vs Personal assistant request

posted 2 months ago in Career
Post # 16
Member
7278 posts
Busy Beekeeper

khopenyc :  does she have a separate “personal assistant”? If you already manage her calendar refusing to add her husband to the events is pretty ridiculous. Your job is to make her life/job easier. 

I’m not an admin and I’ve gotten coffee for my boss. I’ve also gotten coffee for our admin when she’s swamped and can’t leave her desk. No one ever asks me – I offer if I’m getting myself a cup anyways. So long as it doesn’t take away from your substantive work it isn’t demeaning – it’s being a team player and a decent person. 

Post # 18
Member
95 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 1995

khopenyc :  Good for you.  The company is paying you to work on company tasks, not other people’s personal tasks. I should have mentioned that earlier.  

Edit: Plus, I see you are NYC (your username). New Yorkers are “direct” in all matters anyway. LOL.  I lived and worked there for a few years so I remember that very well.

Post # 19
Member
2580 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2018

With an attitude like that, sounds like you won’t have that job much longer!!!! It’s not a personal task if you already schedule those things for her.

Sometimes you have to let go of the ego & be a team player. I have a doctorate. But do you know what I do sometimes? Make the coffee & load the dishwasher in the office!!!!!! Gasp!!!! 

Post # 20
Member
9573 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

Perhaps an admin role is not the right type of career path for you. khopenyc :  

Post # 21
Member
2214 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

 Is your manager also your boss’s boss? Who do you actually report to?

 

ETA: if the manager is the boss’s boss, I guess his or her word is the last word…but it possibly won’t reflect well on you that you went over your direct boss’s head to ask about this.

Post # 22
Member
677 posts
Busy bee

khopenyc :  As an admin, I would occasionally do personal tasks for my old boss. Personally I wouldn’t see something like adding her hubby to an invite as a big deal. I used to fax things to his daughter’s doctors office, and other similar small tasks. I was even happy to run to the cafe to get his coffee for him. My boss had a demanding position, and he appreciated the little extras I did that weren’t in my job description, but saved him a ton of time in the long run. Personally, I don’t see the issue with small tasks, but if he started asking me to have his car washed, or pick up his dry cleaning, I would certainly draw the line. 

Post # 23
Member
1165 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2016

khopenyc :  I first read this that she wanted you to schedule travel with/dinners with her husband – which I agree is very much not within the umbrella of admin assistant.

However forwarding her professional dinners/travel to her husband – I would definitely count that within admin assistant. 

The role of an admin assistant is to manage the professional calendar of their boss, adding/removing participants to those invites is manaing the calendar. Now if she wants you to make new event invites separately to share with her husband…that I would politely decline.

But adding her husband to her travel/dinner calendar invites? I would disagree that that is personal assistant only scope of work.

FYI, I work for a company that most people have admin (but not personal) assistants who typically support 3-5 individuals at a time so we are strict on what we can ask an assistant to do. However anything that has to do with professional calendar is on that list of expectations.

Post # 24
Member
677 posts
Busy bee

slomotion :  I have always fetched my boss’s coffee! I’m happy to get off my butt, and take a break from my computer. And a caffeinated boss is a happy and productive boss. 

Post # 25
Member
7906 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

khopenyc :  If you are comfortable telling your boss she can “walk to the break room herself” then I don’t even know why you created this thread. You clearly pride yourself on being direct and not veering so much as one millimeter outside of your job description, so what is the problem? Say to your boss, “you can send the i-vite to your husband yourself!” 

Best wishes.

Post # 27
Member
1039 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2017

Maybe you could look for jobs as an office manager or facilities manager. Still some menial tasks but those positions can pay really well. You might need to get a certificate but it seems like a good transition from an admin role if you want to be the boss someday.

Post # 28
Member
7906 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

khopenyc :  In the meantime I am trying to get out of this “field” completely as I HATE being someone’s bitch, so I’m working towards transitioning to something else. 

Honestly…I was snarky in my first reply to you, but I feel this. I was in an admin type role for five years after college and I effing hated it…never again. I had one boss that I supported who was amazing – she mentored me and never treated me like her bitch…but the other was a total asshole that made me feel like a secretary in the era of Mad Men. 

Anyway I hope you find another career path soon!

Post # 29
Member
6145 posts
Bee Keeper

khopenyc :  Good decision and yes, if you do not like “assisting” this does not sound like a good career choice for you. 

Post # 30
Member
2214 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

khopenyc :  In the meantime I am trying to get out of this “field” completely as I HATE being someone’s bitch

 

I get this…for 3 years, I had an admin role where I supported three separate sales managers by essentially drafting their loan documents (via software program), and putting together the package so the loan would get funded and they would get their commissions. While I was there to support the three, none of them had any official authority over me (we all reported to the same general manager).

 

None of them ever asked me to fetch coffee or manage their work calendars, but they all took great delight in telling various vendors over the phone, “I’ll have my assistant send that over to you” and things akin to that (FYI, faxing that item was my job, and I would have done it regardless of them ‘having’ me do it, but the way they said it just fucking rankled).

 

It was nothing personal against me, they just liked sounding important. But it bothered me so badly.

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