I’ve been home from Executive Secretary LIVE in London for a week and I’ve been trying to put into word how amazing this conference was. I’ve been to a few Admin conferences and always feel like they could have done better. Executive Secretary LIVE was like Lucy Brazier and her incredible staff got into my head and saw all the hopes I had for the other conferences and executed them. I loved each and every moment. At Lucy’s request I live tweeted the sessions. I’ve been on Twitter for years, but confess to not utilizing it enough. I’m sure I produced as many Tweets in the two days of the conference as I have in the two years I’ve been on Twitter. Please check out @Debs224 for most of my key take-aways from the sessions.
First, for those who are not aware, Executive Secretary Live is the world's leading international event for senior and aspiring Administrative Professionals and Executive Assistants. The conferences take place throughout the year and around the world and features inspiring speakers and internationally renowned trainers for the Administrative Profession. The session I attended was in London. It was an amazing week spent with my mentors, heroes and colleagues. I reconnected with friends and greatly expanded my network. All sessions were structured for high-level admins.
Day one included two master classes. In the morning Cathy Harris spoke on creating and maintaining a successful internal admin networks. My favorite tip from Cathy was: Joining an admin organization or expanding your admin network helps you become exceptional! The afternoon was spent with Laura Belgrado, one of Europe’s most sought after trainer, giving us the ins & outs of public speaking. My favorite tip from Laura: Public speaking does not necessarily result in hurling, anxiety attacks or death. Laura provided many valuable tips on breathing, timing, non-verbal presentation skills and so much more. I can’t wait to put what I learned into practice when I speak during APW.
Lucy Brazier kicked off day two reminding us that we are who we are because of others. So true. Every person has an impact. Make your impact a positive one.
The day was jammed-packed with inspiration, so I’m going to give you my key take-away from each.
Marsha Egan spoke about “Powerful Priorities.”
Don’t get so caught up in the daily grind that you forget to work on your goals.
The incredible Bonnie Low-Kramen discussed “Finding Your Voice to Handle Challenging Situations.”
Women, in general, are raised to be competitive, but we need to be collaborative. We need to overcome our fear of saying, “I could really use some help.”
Next up, Vickie Sokol Evans shared “Timesaving (and jaw-dropping) productivity tips using Excel” and the room filled up with gasps of shock and cries of joy. If you want to improve your productivity and hone your technology skills, I highly recommend taking one of Vickie’s classes. I thought I was pretty tech savvy until I took one of her classes. Oh, the hours she has saved me.
Rhonda Scharf entertained up with her presentation “Sometimes You’re theWindshield – Sometimes You’re the Bug.” My key take-away was that when you are the bug is often when you learn and grow the most.
After lunch Bonnie & Vickie teamed up to record their next podcast on training for admins. Did you know that one hour of technology training provides one hour productivity increase per day? That is a great point to include if you are requesting training dollars from your company. As soon as the podcast is posted, I’ll share the link.
The speaker that had the biggest impact on me was Jasmine Freeman. Jasmine’s story was powerful and she shared it so eloquently, and with such honesty. The thing she said that resonated the most with me is, “What are you telling yourself that is simply not true?” Often our biggest critic is the voice inside our own head. Make sure that voice is not telling you lies.
Our final speaker was Peggy Grande, former EA to President Ronald Reagan. Peggy gave us her 10 tips from the top. It is hard for me to narrow it down to just one item from her presentation, so I’m choosing three:
We closed out Executive Secretary LIVE London with one heck of a birthday gala at the beautiful Ham Polo Club. Executive Secretary turned five, so we had a celebration. You’ve haven’t been to a party until you’ve been to a party with 150 admins. We dined, danced, sang and networked until the wee hours of the morning. It was one of the highlights of the trip for me.
Lucy Brazier has accomplished so much. She has done so much to improve the Administrative profession in the past five years. I’m so proud of her and was honored to be there to celebrate this milestone. I look forward to the next five … ten … TWENTY years!!! Thank you, Lucy!!
I’m planning on being at Executive Secretary LIVE again next year. I hope to see even more new faces.
The Audacious Admin is Debbi L. Shaffer, an outgoing, resourceful and highly motivated executive assistant with 20 years of experience specializing in C-Suite Executive Support.