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The Power of Leveraging an Executive Assistant in your Business: An Interview with Ethan Bull

2 min read

In the world of entrepreneurship, managing your time is paramount to achieving success. However, as business leaders, we often grapple with the daunting task of juggling multiple responsibilities simultaneously. This is where executive assistants, particularly remotely outsourced ones, become indispensable.

Jeffrey Feldberg, host of the Deep Wealth Podcast, recently interviewed Ethan Bull, co-founder of ProAssisting, a leading firm specializing in providing remote fractional executive services. They explored the landscape of remote work, leveraging AI, and the role of executive assistants in today’s business world.

The Merits of Executive Assistants in Business

According to Ethan, executive assistants play an integral role in businesses, but unfortunately, up to 90% of conversations involving them usually revolve around failed tasks. This, he argued, is a representation of misplaced focus.

Contrary to common perception, an excellent executive assistant does more than just schedule meetings and manage calendars. Equipped with a blend of emotional intelligence and in-depth industry knowledge, they can become a critical part of your firm’s strategic decision-making processes.

However, he warns business leaders to approach the assistant-principal relationship with a level of mutual trust and holistic understanding of each other’s personalities and work styles.

Traditionally, the role of an executive assistant (EA) has been perceived as purely administrative. However, as businesses and roles evolve, executive assistants are fast becoming a vital part of organizations, assisting not only with administrative work but also with strategic tasks.

“EAs play an essential role in a CEO’s time and relationships management,” shares Ethan. “Think about it. Your assistant manages your calendar, so they basically control where you spend your most valuable asset – time. They deal with all the people you interact with – whether that’s clients, colleagues or family. Doing that well requires a high level of emotional intelligence and soft skills.”

When asked about the role of executive assistants in relation to business growth strategies, Ethan emphasized the need for business leaders to approach their operations from a ‘blend and balance’ perspective. To get the most out of a new team member, they cautioned business owners against the dangers of micromanagement.

He pointed out that business leaders often make the mistake of assuming their new hires are perfect right out of the gate without taking the time to onboard and train them properly.

The Covid-19 pandemic has irrevocably changed the landscape of work and has brought about the rise of remote and hybrid work structures. Ethan revealed that during the pandemic, ProAssisting saw growth in the business, but it did not explode immediately.

However, he was of the view that the emergence of software as a service products and access to fractional workers is a great opportunity for businesses to remain lean while managing their growth effectively.

Harnessing the Power of AI in Executive Assistance

When prompted about the impact of artificial intelligence on the role of executive assistants, Ethan noted that while AI should be harnessed to its full extent for efficiency, there is still a significant role for human assistant services. He underscored the importance of balancing the use of technology with personal touch, emotional intelligence, and the value derived from having a trusted partner in your business affairs.

While technology has inevitably influenced the role of executive assistants, Ethan emphasizes the value of balancing technology with human judgment. Tools and AI can facilitate scheduling, communication, and project management, but they cannot replace the personal touch, emotional intelligence, and decision-making capabilities of an experienced executive assistant.

“AI can offload certain tasks, but it doesn’t fully replace the soft skills and emotional intelligence that a human assistant brings to your business,” says Ethan.

Conclusion

As we navigate an era where businesses increasingly operate in a digital realm, it’s essential to recognize the irreplaceable benefits an executive assistant contributes. At the cross-section of technology and human interaction, the future of executive assisting lies.

Executive assistants are not just about tackling administrative tasks; they can be instrumental in strategic planning initiatives and significantly contribute to overall business development. To echo Ethan’s words, achieving deep wealth in business is the convergence of meeting all your responsibilities while having as much fun as possible.

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