Once considered a staid, slow-moving workplace, the government is seeking to update its image, culture and ways of working. It’s an industry that provides strong benefits, and for the right person, plenty of career opportunities.
Government organisations are highly procedural. With all sorts of scrutineers ready to critique every move, and an ever-watchful media holding it to account, government as employers can be cautious and therefore executives need an EA with scrupulous attention to detail.
As a consequence, it can be a slow-moving operation while every possibility is canvassed, researched and explored. However, government leaders are well aware of its reputation and are actively seeking to innovate and change. As leaders in diversity, staff wellbeing and work-life balance, the government is often at the forefront of a progressive workplace culture. Plus, EAs enjoy the benefits of being part of public decision-making processes, with the chance to support executives as they contribute to influential decisions or deliver policies and programs that benefit their local, state and national communities.
An understanding of policy, procedure, governance and compliance is essential in government roles. While corporate clients will appreciate executive assistants from different backgrounds, government clients tend to prefer experience in the unique legislative environment. Stakeholder management is an important aspect for EAs working in government positions. Effective communication is also vital as each decision impacts subsequent government organisations and departments, so a large part of the executive assistant role is delicately balancing the need to keep important stakeholders abreast of important developments.
Diary and travel management is often an important factor in government roles, and executive assistants will be required to manage busy schedules involving plenty of appointments, consulting sessions, workshops, training and more.