How many times have you wished you could clone yourself to be in two or more places at once? No more rushing from one meeting to another and constantly feeling like you’re on someone else’s time schedule. Since that is not (yet) possible, the next best thing may be hiring a personal assistant. Duties of a personal assistant, while they won’t make major decisions for you or stand in at family functions, they can help you increase your mental bandwidth and create balance between your work and personal lives.
The duties of a personal assistant are as varied as their clients, and oftentimes become more defined as trust builds between the two. At a minimum, they will organize your files so you’re not always scrambling to find things and create a schedule that you’re actually able to stick to, including setting work meetings, blocking out the mornings when you drive the kids to school or evenings you’re meeting buddies for drinks, and ensuring you get your daily workout in.
Just as important, they help you build healthy boundaries by managing the expectations of your clients, colleagues – and maybe even friends and family – around your actual availability, rather than what you feel pressured to tell them. As time goes on, you may even task your assistant with paying your bills and oversee the care of valued possessions like art and automobiles.
While your personal assistant can no doubt make your daily life easier and reduce your overall stress, you will really notice the difference when it comes to big-ticket items such as event planning. For many, holding a holiday dinner party is enough to make their blood pressure rise, let alone a wedding or charity gala. Choosing the menu, sending out hundreds of invitations and managing who will attend, as well as hiring entertainment are just a few of the countless details that will haunt your thoughts for weeks or months. Then there are the inevitable night-of crises, and the way you handle them will determine your success or failure – and possibly cause you some real embarrassment.
A personal assistant worth their salt will not simply handle basic logistics, but collaborate with you to ensure that your vision for the occasion is realized. For example, they will be able to brainstorm with you on the theme – whether it’s serving as a sounding board for your ideas, offering honest feedback about their feasibility, or adding their own creative twists. Ideally, they will also have connections with vendors and venues, or at least be well-versed in negotiating with them, so you can feel confident that they will get the best service and stay if not within your budget then close to it.
Whatever your personal assistant’s duties, communication with you is key – and technology, in one form of another, will likely be the primary tool. Long-gone are the days when an assistant stands by your desk with pen and pad at the ready; in fact, they may be in a different city, state, or halfway around the world, especially if you travel a lot. With few exceptions, phone calls are also obsolete, as you must be able to share data with each other in in real-time. For this reason, many people and businesses are turning to all-in-one platforms such as EstateSpace, that a provide an operational hub for daily tasks and large projects. You can upload budgets, schedules and other files that your assistant can access and update, 24/7. There is also a messaging feature that serves as a space for you to converse with each other and other trusted partners with greater transparency and security. Hiring a personal assistant can be a bit of an adjustment, especially if you’re use to handling everything yourself; however, with some time – and your willingness to part with some control – you will find that they make an enormous difference in your life, increasing your efficiency while reducing drama so you can focus on the things and relationships that mean the most to you.