10 In-Demand Skills for Administrative Assistants

Are you looking to really be a breakout admin assistant? Anyone can perform the basic duties of a receptionist, but an administrative assistant role is the perfect stepping stone to move up the corporate ladder. To really nail it, here are ten skills you’ll need to employ:

1) Proactivity

You will need to anticipate needs, not take care of them as they come. Being an administrative assistant is like playing chess – you need to be two moves ahead to win.

2) Organization

Staying prepared and organized will help your ability to do well in an admin position. Whether you’re a traditional person that likes to use a paper planner or a Microsoft Outlook mastermind, you’ll need to manage documents, communications, and meetings with ease.

3) Friendliness

An outgoing nature will lend itself well to admin work. Often the administrative assistant is the first face of the company, and front-line workers act as a representation of the entire organization, so friendliness and general courtesy are important.

4) Resourcefulness

Utilizing the capabilities around you will always be beneficial at work, but particularly in this role. As an admin, you need to be ready for any request. If you don’t know the answer to a problem, reach out or look it up, so you are always in the know!

5) Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence sounds fancy, but it’s really all about knowing other people and managing your relationships with them. When you interface with customers, colleagues, and supervisors, stay self-aware and consider how you can stay open and honest.

6) Solving Problems

Tackling the issues that arise throughout the workday comes naturally to a great administrative assistant. You may find it helpful to create a binder of policies and procedures, so you always know how to respond to a given situation.

7) Effective Communication

Master your approach as well as every method of communication you’ll need. If your boss prefers to communicate via email, make sure you’re checking your account consistently, and issuing any information clearly and efficiently to save time.

8) Multitasking

An administrative assistant often needs to drop their current task in favor of a more urgent one. Make sure you are skilled in picking up where you left off and working on more than one project at once.

9) Versatility

Managing multiple domains is required of an administrative assistant. You may be sending quick emails while also scheduling a conference for multiple important stakeholders, so expect to wear a few hats.


This needs to be next level. No missing attachments and certainly no emails to the wrong parties. Double-check all of your work.

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