To fully appreciate the professional administrator, we must first understand their role. Professional administrators are many things, including gate keeper, time keeper, travel agent, office manager and miracle worker. They help manage executives, coordinate with various departments and can have significant responsibility depending on the structure of the organisation. With wearing so many hats, the role of a professional administrator should be recognised for the valuable contributions he or she makes to the organisation.
I compare professional administrators metaphorically to eagles. Like eagles, professional administrators benefit from having vision and they are fearless flyers, who add vitality and soar. It is each of these qualities that define a strong administrator and result in their professional success.
A professional administrator helps to advance management’s or the organisation’s overall goals. This requires a big-picture (50,000-foot) view of the business. If you ever see an eagle sitting high on a tree, watch closely and see how attentive the bird is. Their eyes are specially designed for long distance focus and clarity. As with eagles, a big, yet focused vision will produce great results for professional administrators.
Another similarity between strong professional administrators and eagles is their fearlessness. An eagle will never surrender to the size or strength of its prey. Whether it’s accepting new responsibilities, coping with rapid change, handling inevitable stress or multitasking, professional administrators are fearless and face challenges straight on.
Eagles can fly up to an altitude of 10,000 feet and still are able to swiftly land on the ground. Likewise, professional administrators operate five steps ahead of their boss in order to stay in front of potential queries or conflicts.
There are times in the career of a professional administrator that he or she must step back and take stock of the situation. Questions like: Are you up to date with the current knowledge trend? Do you need to improve certain areas in your professional life? Great administrators are the ones that always do "checks and balances" of their professional lives and make an effort to learn things every day.
Eagles are tenacious. Watch them when a storm comes. Other birds fly away, however, an eagle spreads its mighty wings and uses the current to soar to greater heights. The eagle takes advantage of the very storm that smaller birds fear. Challenges in the life of a professional administrator are many. Like an eagle, an administrator can only rise to greater heights if he or she takes up the challenges head on without running away from them.
For the Professional Admin to soar, he or she also must have a growth mindset. So many administrators get trapped in the pigeon or duck mindset and not the eagle mentality. These birds have low-level thinking and fly low. In order to create a positive experience, it starts with a positive mindset.
An eagle learns to soar by using thermal currents of air, letting the wind carry them to new heights. Soaring saves an eagle energy because it does not have to flap its wings as often. Through efficient use of time management, keeping a calm demeanour, and being detail oriented and organised, the administrator also can soar.
Kellianne Smith joined the Argus Group in 2013 and is responsible for leading the global operations of the HR, OD and Administration Services team in Bermuda as well as has joint reporting responsibility for the HR/OD resources in the Gibraltar and Malta offices. She has more than 15 years combined expertise in strategic human resource management, recruitment, employee relations/ negotiations, training and leadership development. www.argus.bm.
This guide is not a substitute for professional advice, you should always consult with your independent professional advisor.