From large banks to boutique consulting and accounting firms, the diverse and varied industry offers plenty of opportunity for high-level contributions for career-minded executive assistants.
The accounting, banking and finance industry is one of the most traditional and corporate. While it’s still male-dominated, many industry leaders are embracing change which sees more women in leadership positions and with a seat at the boardroom table. Executive assistants have the chance to be at the forefront, helping leaders drive vast cultural change across organisations.
The opportunity for career advancement is considerable, with the broad scope of industry contributors, specialist EAs can concentrate solely on this sector with considerable advantages. Remuneration, benefits, work/life balance and being part of a defined, powerful culture can be highly appealing to many executive assistants.
Increasingly, executives in the accounting, finance and banking industries are seeking business partner executive assistants who can provide the strategic consulting support needed to achieve their KPIs. A strong knowledge of project management software is useful for EAs in this space, as well as a highly analytical, logical and practical approach. A strong understanding of policy and procedure is helpful.
EAs supporting top-level executives will need to be highly skilled gatekeepers who can manage constant requests for their executive’s time and attention. Diary management will be vital, as will stakeholder relations — building strong connections to internal and external stakeholders is highly valued in this sector.
Experience matters in this industry, as leaders tend to value assistants who have a strong understanding of the financial environment. Initiative, proactivity, confidence and resilience are always high on the list of desirable traits for executive assistants in this space. When a strong relationship between executive and assistant develops, it’s likely that executives will take EAs alongside them as they move roles and grow their careers.