Imagine being 21 years old, driving into the Sydney CBD for the first time. The traffic is daunting, you are being directed to the closest car park via phone, and all you can think about is your outfit creasing. You enter the reception of a global corporation and nervously await your first interview.

You land the position, and start as a Team Assistant the following day!

Fast forward seven years… you find yourself as a Director in the New York City office.

That was my journey.

At least it has been, so far!

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The start of my career in Office Support was pretty predictable. I worked hard on the reception desk, was taught how to create great PowerPoint presentations, organised some amazing events and coordinated the diaries for multiple managers. I experienced working for some fantastic people, and I also experienced working for some difficult individuals who looked down on the Office Support function.

Having worked as a Receptionist, Team Assistant and Personal Assistant, I know what it takes to do a good job. I also understand the difference it makes to be respected and feel a part of the business team.

Since commencing my career in Office Support and seeing what it has allowed me to do, I have remained passionate about guiding Office Support professionals. Finding the right ‘home’ makes all the difference. Working for the right company, the right people and choosing the right role at the right time – can make or break your career.

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I chose the path of recruitment to develop my career and have gained a lot of satisfaction from becoming an expert in the Office Support sector.  Further, there has been the natural opportunity to play a role in supporting today’s youth; assisting them in key decisions regarding the development of their careers. This coupled with the rewarding relationships I have been able to forge with my clients, both in Sydney and New York has convinced me that Office Support and recruitment are my two business passions.

In launching Assistant Sydney this year, after returning from two years in New York recruiting in Office Support – I am so excited. I am working with a great team and we look forward to working towards our dream of becoming the dominant Office Support recruitment firm in Sydney.

The above is quite a personal sentiment, which will not be typical for ‘The Daily Admin’. However, I wanted to provide our community with an insight into the voice behind these posts. Moving forward we will be updating you with tips, news, trends and challenges we see for the Office Support market in Sydney.

However, to continue this theme for today, please see below my top five personal tips for thriving in your first Office Support opportunity.

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  1. Don’t disregard the menial tasks.

    It might seem like ‘just data entry’ or ‘another boring spreadsheet’ at the time, but every single task from an Office Support role has a larger flow on effect and is business critical in some way. If you bind a last-minute presentation for the MD when they are incredibly stressed and busy, they won’t forget it. They won’t forget you.

  2. Embrace the opportunities, which seem scary at first.

    One of Richard Branson’s most famous quotes is “If somebody offers you an amazing opportunity but you are not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later.” This is so true. You will not progress if you always stay within your comfort zone. It’s often people with potential, not necessarily experience, that are given the opportunity to progress. You can’t train attitude, work ethic and will.

  3. Put in the hours.

    This is not about being in the office from 8am until 8pm. This is about being available, being responsive and working until a task isn’t just done – but done to a high standard. In the early years, your approach to work and the dedication you show to your role will ultimately create a perception that relates to your personal brand. This will directly translate in people’s minds to your work ethic and is critical for those promotions further down the track.

  4. Build relationships.

    Be personable, be accommodating, and make an effort to get to know those around you. At this stage of your career you not only need to prove your value, but you need advocates on your side. There will be multiple meetings taking place, at varying levels, which can and will impact your career. You don’t have an invite to ‘the table’ yet, so you need to make sure that the people who do, will support you.

  5. Show initiative.

    Don’t accept the ‘it has always been done this way’ excuse. Bringing new ideas to the table, challenging the status quo and creating opportunities will create an impression and establish yourself as a ‘go to’. Master one thing then move on – be the best at what you do first before putting your hand up for the next step. This will a) give you confidence to succeed again, b) give those around you confidence they have backed the right person.

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I hope that you found this post useful, and were able to get to know me a little better!

Please follow Assistant Sydney on LinkedIn to remain up to date with our active jobs and salary data.

I look forward to speaking with you, working with you, and empowering you to push your careers forward!

Sincerely,

Sarah Bolitho