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An executive assistant to the chief executive officer (CEO) provides high-level, confidential administrative support to the office of the CEO. Duties may be clerical, administrative and project-based and include scheduling travel, arranging meetings, handling information requests, preparing reports and correspondence and liaising with board members. This position is often privy to confidential information and as such, requires diplomacy and discretion.
Manage CEO's Schedule:
CEO's have very busy schedules and heavy workloads. As such, it is the responsibility of the executive assistant to manage his schedule and workload and ensure he is adequately prepared for meetings. Prior to meetings, the executive assistant may prepare the meeting agenda and provide needed background information to the CEO. It is also his responsibility to ensure the CEO is briefed on her daily schedule to ensure she arrives on time and knows where to be.
CEOs tend to travel frequently and it is often the responsibility of the executive assistant to arrange travel and logistics. This may include booking flights, car rental and hotel accommodations. She is also responsible for arranging meetings, providing needed background information and completing expense reports for reimbursement after the trip.
Liaise with Board Members:
Executive assistants also may interact with the board of directors. Duties can include scheduling board meetings, handling logistics of board meetings, sending materials for review prior to the meetings, taking and distributing notes and fielding general queries from board members.
General Administrative and Clerical Tasks:
The executive assistant also provides general administrative and clerical tasks such as answering phones, faxing, mailing, filing and photocopying. She also may be required to arrange logistics for visitors, coordinate conference calls, transcribe notes and type correspondence.
Qualifications and Skills:
While a bachelor's degree is often preferred, an associate degree may be acceptable with sufficient previous work experience. Employers tend to seek three to five years of experience supporting senior managers, strong computer skills and the ability to type fast, manage upwards, handle confidential information and multitask. Personal attributes such as discretion, a high level of professionalism, strong attention to detail, organization and written and verbal communication skills are also sought. Must be fluent in both Arabic & English.
Work Environment and Salary:
Executive assistants often work in a fast-paced office environment and may be required to work overtime and weekends as needed and accompany the CEO on travel.
Male or Female
- Manage and maintain the CEO’s diary and email account.
- Filter emails, highlight urgent correspondence and print attachments.
- Ensure busy diary commitments, papers, and travel arrangements are managed effectively including producing a daily folder with diary, necessary papers, etc. and troubleshooting problems.
- Conduct weekly diary meetings with the CEO to discuss upcoming engagements, invitations and other requests.
- Schedule on behalf of the CEO meetings between him and his direct reports and the committees and groups to which he is a member.
- Coordinate travel and accommodation requirements in connection with others and ensure arrangements in place for the CEO match his requirements.
- Filter general information, queries, phone calls and invitations to the CEO by redirecting or taking forward such contact as appropriate.
- Manage the process of calling for briefing on behalf of the CEO from start to finish to Keep and maintain an accurate record of papers and electronic correspondence on behalf of the CEO.
- Prepare correspondence on behalf of the CEO, including the drafting of general replies.
- Minute general meetings as required and complete research on behalf of the CEO.
- Keep and retrieve files.
- Ensure guests meeting with the CEO are well taken care of.
- Provide a service that is in line with the CEO’s work habits and preferences.
- Must be proficient with the keyboard and IT applications (this may be tested during the selection process).
- Expert level in the use of Outlook.
- Intermediate level in the use of Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
- Excellent organizational skills, ability to multi-task and organise others.
- Excellent oral and written communication skills and ability to professionally represent the CEO’s office.
- Ability to work under pressure and be flexible as part of a small team.
- Attention to detail and deadlines.
- Ability to filter information and assess priorities.