Several years ago, I was asked to help a colleague in a last minute fire drill. She said, "Melissa, I know you are an administrative guru and I am desperate for your help."
I laughed when she said that phrase. Partly because guru is just a fun word to say and because I had never heard those two words put together before. I thought to myself, what does that even mean? What is an administrative guru exactly? And even if there is such a thing, am I one? So, because I am inquisitive like that, I looked it up in the dictionary and this was the definition that I found...
GURU: A person who has a lot of experience in or knowledge about a particular subject
Someone who other people respect and go to for advice about a particular subject
Well then, yes, I guess I was an administrative guru and there was something empowering about owning that. Executive Assistants can be so focused on assisting and supporting the executives that they partner with that we often marginalize our own expertise and leadership. When we consider our critical roles, that kind of mentality is counter productive . Someone has to be the "go-to" person and have the experience and knowledge to be the subject matter expert. Don't look now, but there is huge, blinking, neon sign over your head pointing at you!
Over the years, I have defined what that term means to me and I have expanded it to include several areas that I focus on during training, mentoring, and EA workshops. Our roles require in-depth knowledge and skill and are extremely valued and highly prized when you can execute on them consistently. It is okay to give yourself permission to be really great at something... So go on and own it!