How to Become an Administrative Assistant

Paula Pipitone

March 23, 2023


An administrative assistant is responsible for various administrative tasks, from managing phone calls and emails to organizing meetings. The job requires a lot of flexibility and adaptability. A high school diploma and basic computer skills are typically required for entry-level administrative assistant jobs, but many companies also offer training or certification programs. If you have a bachelor’s degree, it can be a competitive advantage in the field.

Communication Skills

One of the most important skills for an administrative assistant is effective communication. This includes both verbal and written communication. It requires professionalism, good grammar, and proper workplace etiquette to communicate concisely and accurately with others.

This job requires administrative assistants to communicate regularly with colleagues, customers, and other professionals. This can include email, phone calls, meetings, and more.

Strong communication skills can help you maintain relationships with colleagues, supervisors, and managers. It also helps you keep track of important information that might otherwise need to be found.

Attention to Detail

Attention to detail is a skill that many employers look for in their administrative assistants. It’s important for various reasons, including the fact that it minimizes costly errors and ensures your work meets government standards and industry benchmarks.

People who are highly attentive to detail also maintain a positive work environment. They keep distractions at bay by creating daily to-do lists, sticking to routines, and working through their tasks efficiently.

When applying for a job, if you highlight this skill on your resume, include specific examples of how your attention to detail directly benefited your work. These could be a specific task you made that required extra time and effort to complete or a project that resulted in a quantifiable change.

Organizational Skills

Administrative assistants perform various tasks, and organizational skills are critical for success. They may need to manage a supervisor’s calendar, prepare job applications, arrange notes during meetings, or store and order office files.

They must also keep their workspace organized and clutter-free, which requires strong attention to detail. Developing these organizational skills will make you more effective at your job and help you get things done faster. It can also make you feel more in control of your work and reduce stress.


Administrative assistants often need to be able to adjust quickly and calmly to the demands of their job. They may need to reschedule appointments, keep track of supplies, or juggle unexpected emergencies at work.

Flexibility can be hard to develop, but it’s a skill that can be learned. You can start by accepting that change is inevitable and adjusting your attitude.

Developing flexibility can improve your mental health and make you more resilient to challenges at work. Moreover, it can increase your respect and trust among colleagues.

Problem-Solving Skills

Problem-solving skills are crucial for administrative assistants, as they’re often called on to solve problems at work. This can be anything from a scheduling conflict to a technology issue, and it’s important to have the ability to think on your feet and find solutions quickly.

To develop these skills, you need to practice them frequently. This can be done by role-playing a problem or reading professional practice books in your industry. Problem-solving-skill can be a challenging skill to learn, but it’s also worth the effort. By mastering it, you can improve your career opportunities and become an invaluable asset to any company.