When you’re a high-level executive assistant, no two days are the same. So it’s important to have a reliable system with an executive assistant daily checklist to keep you on track.
Having worked as an EA myself, and now specialising in hiring executive assistants for Australia’s leading employers, I have spent many years learning what makes an efficient executive assistant. I firmly believe that what you do daily is the key driver of success.
So I’ve created this executive assistant daily checklist to help EAs take charge of their day and focus on the important things that will help them perform at the high-level their executives expect. It covers four daily priorities:
Before you get stuck into deep work, you should have a 10 minute morning routine that sets your day up for success. Your routine should be carefully honed to ensure it sets a precedent for a positive, productive day. This routine should not work-related tasks; think of it as a warmup athletes do before the big game.
Consider adding these tasks to your daily morning routine:
It’s essential to check your executive’s inbox first thing in the morning, to see if anything urgent has arrived outside of office hours.
Processing correspondence, deciding what to action, what to discuss with your executive and what to file can be the bane of your existence, so it’s up to you to create systems to manage them effectively. A high-performing executive assistant should always be aiming for inbox zero. Filter emails into the right folders, set them into to-do and allocate tasks to your project management system (Slack, Asana, Monday, or whatever tool you need).
Once important emails have been dealt with, and others have been scheduled, take time for deep work.
Getting the most difficult project done first will give you the momentum you need. Most of us work best at the start of the day, and concentration flags by mid afternoon. So allocate your first working hours to tackling the bigger projects. Write that presentation, prepare the board meeting agenda or do anything else that’s really important.
A business partner executive assistant is able to stay a few steps ahead of their executive. It’s your role to anticipate potential issues, and plan accordingly. The best way you can do this is to check in twice daily with your executive. The more frequent the check in, the shorter it can be. A 30-minute chat at the start of the day, and a 15-minute end of day report may be all that’s necessary— but this will depend greatly on your particular working relationship.
A strategic EA will be thinking of both the business direction and the executive’s particular KPIs, and will be prioritising time accordingly. You must understand the strategic goals of the organisation and how the executive is going to contribute, so you can then schedule time appropriately.
Categorise all enquiries, questions and issues using the ABCDE method:
Lastly, you need a powerful end-of-day routine that helps you mentally check out for the day, and set you up for another productive day tomorrow. A physical and digital declutter will help your future self start the next day with fewer distractions.
Many high-value EAs do everything on this list, at the end of every day:
|*pre-work morning routine*||first thing|
|A tasks||Your most important work
The top three must-do tasks for the day
|*check in with your executive here*|
|B tasks||Also important tasks
(but not as vital as A tasks)
|C tasks||Needs to be done, but not a huge priority
Easy to complete, administrative tasks
|*check in with executive again here*|
|D & E tasks||Delegate to others
|Evening routine||Evening correspondence
Reply to all emails, voicemails and messages
Prepare your next day's schedule
Review your coming fortnight
|end of day|
If you’re looking for an executive assistant, then we can help find you the ideal candidate.
Contact Anastasia on 0421 16 55 96 or list your vacancy with us today.