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Executive Assistant’s Year-End Checklist

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The role of executives shifted this year in reaction to the events businesses faced, from pandemic recovery to fluctuating markets to office re-entry, and much more. Amid the drastic changes business leaders faced, one thing remained consistent: their reliance on strong Executive Assistant support.  

As was the case for entering 2021, business will continue to face a road to recovery and unseen change for the year ahead, and there are 7 key tasks effective Executive Assistants can tackle before year-end to ensure their executives start 2022 off strong. 

1. Create a Backwards Timeline 

Are there loose ends that need to be tied up before January 1? What projects or goals may have been put on the back burner during the pandemic that now need attention? Also consider important dates to remember - both professional and personal matters, such as expirations of certain memberships or regular car registrations or maintenance. Create a backwards timeline, accounting for holidays, building closures and time off, to ensure things are getting done before the New Year.  

2. Anticipate What They’ll Need 

Anticipate what reports the executive will need at the end of the year or at the start of next year and begin working on those now so they’re ready should they ask for it. Make note of important trends or changes from prior years if applicable. 

3. Update Documents 

Plan ahead for upcoming travel. Check all identification cards and note anything that may be expiring, like IDs, passports, public transit cards or toll lane passes. While they may or may not have specific travel plans, it is important to be prepared for anything.   

4. Update Contacts

An updated list of contacts is crucial for executives, so be sure to go through and add/remove contacts before year-end. Especially if certain organizations are still operating remotely or hybrid, or may have moved offices, update profiles with new addresses or phone numbers, as well.  

Also consider which contacts may need reengagement, or top clients the executive should connect with before the end of the yea Preemptively create a list of these contacts to present for scheduled one-on-one time to strengthen relationships and wrap up the year strong. 

5. Thank Vendors 

In a support role, it’s likely Executive Assistants work with many vendors throughout the year. Writing each a personalized note can go a long way to starting the year off on the right foot. If there are vendors typically partnered with that were not used this year, consider sending them a note as well to help maintain relationships for the future. 

6. Plan Next Year’s Calendar 

Executive Assistants should look at the 2022 calendar with their executive and block out planned vacations, typical meetings and annual conferences they plan on attending. While acknowledging that some of these plans may shift, be optimistic and schedule like they will occur as normal in order to set the executive up for success. It is more difficult to add these plans back into a crowded schedule than to modify or cancel events as needed. 

7. Personal Support 

For Executive Assistants who also help manage elements of the executive’s personal life, consider regular personal assistance in the executive’s life, such as landscapers, dog walkers, childcare, etc. A holiday card or personalized note may go a long way in helping maintain relationships with key personnel  

Especially after dealing with so much change personally in day-to-day life over the last two years, new government regulations and guidelines to adhere to, and supporting the workforce through a period of rapid evolution, executives likely had to pivot drastically this year, in both their business strategy and their personal life this year. Don’t limit helping an executive to just professional goals but see also how they might need assistance in achieving personal goals or helping problem-solve challenges they have encountered. This could be preemptively scheduling time with family, helping remember and prepare gifts or plans for special events like anniversaries or birthdays, and ensuring their personal vacation time is blocked off. 

How an Executive Assistant prepares now for the year ahead is pivotal to ensure themselves and their executives are set up for success in 2022.  

If you're looking for a new career, click here to check out the open roles we're recruiting for today!