Confessions of an Irish Administrative Assistant

Girls, how many of you arrived in Toronto full of high hopes to find a position suited to your qualifications but somehow ended up working as an admin assistant (said with a hiss through gritted teeth). We’re so grateful to have a job but sometimes, at the end of a frustrating day, jumping to the every whim of a crazy (sorry, we meant ‘very busy’) director, we wonder ‘what did we do to deserve this’??? Take a read and let us know if you can relate to any of the below? Don’t forget there is many more in the same boat…maybe we should up self-help group? (#Joking #Notjoking)

Monday morning again and I board my bus for the final leg of my journey to work and wonder, “what kind of day will it be today”? I know this is not an uncommon feeling but I really have very little control over my working day as I am (drumroll please) an Administrative Assistant. When I tell people what I do, they are intrigued and make comments about how fun it sounds, but fun it is certainly not. Ya see essentially it is my job to keep my boss happy! My boss is like the Tasmanian Devil…you remember the dim witted but slightly psychotic Looney Toon character who mumbled incoherently and ate everything in sight? Well yeah, that’s what I work with.

The boss, after her morning coffee Fix

The boss, after her morning coffee fix

Generally there are three ways I can tell what type of mood “we” are in;

1. She will fly past my desk, not lifting her head to speak to ANYONE.

2. The side of the eye / wonky smirk stare ; this is not directed at me normally, but at one of my colleagues who has, well lets be blunt, fucked up!

3. The emails; never exactly friendly (actually more often than not the tone of these is passive aggressive) but you know your in trouble when there is no sign off.

I’ve never felt the wrath of the boss, but she does scare the bejaysus outta me. I’ve seen her cut throat work ethic and have on occasion had to deliver the tissues to the poor saps that work directly for her.

So what exactly do I do?

Well I plan this woman’s every move and I mean every move. She doesn’t pee without me knowing. I schedule, organize, re-arrange , file, fix and generally run around (you will never see me in heels). I’m her gatekeeper – no-one sees her without getting past me. This is a major downside of my job. I swear some of my paranoid colleagues sometimes think I don’t allow certain meetings because I want to keep her all to myself…eh no! And I’m genuinely waiting for the day that the annoying twit from accounting will charge at me with a letter opener if she doesn’t get her meeting!

Super admin

Super admin

I have on occasions had to fetch her coffee and once I had to hold an umbrella over her whilst I got soaked at a company barbecue. A particular low-point was the day I brought her back a sandwich with mayo – tut, tut, silly me should have known (without actually being told) that this doll doesn’t do mayo!

But its not all bad. I actually enjoy the pace of this job. I never know what my day will hold and I’m constantly busy. Although my boss never says “please” or “thank you”, she will randomly compliment me and I like to think that is her (weird) way of showing appreciation. And it’s provided endless hours of ranting/laughing for me and my friends over a bottle of vino who find themselves in similar positions. In the meantime, it’s money in the bank until my dream job comes around or Ryan Gosling comes a knocking!

Save me?!

Save me?!

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One thought on “Confessions of an Irish Administrative Assistant

  1. This is all too familiar! I have friends back home who think that my title of Admin Assistant sounds fancy but god is it anything but! I find the working culture and the general office vibe very different over this side of the pond.

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