5 Habits Guaranteed to Boost Your EA Career in 2021

Being an executive assistant is a wonderful opportunity that presents countless occasions to boost your career. You can enhance your professional development through ELS to build a long and lasting career where you are able to accomplish your goals, whether that includes gaining more responsibility or stepping into official leadership yourself. If you want to be able to start boosting your career, you need to build the right habits. In this post, we will discuss five habits that will change how you work forever!

Set SMART Work Goals

Setting SMART goals has been one of the top suggestions in corporate spaces for years—and it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon! You simply cannot argue with the results of this practice. SMART goals are Smart, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Based. Using these standards, you can leverage your goals for success in a wide range of areas.

Your SMART goals will be different than someone else’s—and that is okay! Your goals should be specific to you and your professional and personal development. Whether you set a goal to actually make time for a ten-minute lunch break now and then, or you use this goal-setting process to improve how you approach your work, focus on the value. Allow your goals to be your own, and choose goals that will help you get the most out of your career.

Start a Work Journal

Journals are absolutely invaluable tools. To discover their benefit, begin to use your journal as a point of professional reflection. With how busy you are, it can be difficult to really separate the good and the bad, and when it all blends together, we can start to feel lost, and the bad can begin to overshadow the good. With a journal, we can learn from our days and weeks to find ways to improve our processes and celebrate the wins.

To be successful with a journal, commitment is key. Once or twice a week, sit down and reflect upon your work processes. What worked really well? What accomplishments are you proud of? What did you struggle with and how can you be more prepared to succeed in the future? You will learn so much through this method!

Do a Personality Test with Your Executive

In order to be successful, you will want to focus on having a great dynamic with your executive. A fun and incredibly informational way to do this is through personality tests. Instead of simply guessing at strengths, take a moment to evaluate the both of you. Use these tests to identify strengths and weaknesses, as well as communication styles. This information can help you to work more effectively with your executive. For more on this, stay tuned for our Enneagram workshop at the ELS Spring Series!

Find an Accountability Partner

Accountability is where a lot of people struggle. While you might objectively know what you want and what you need to do in order to attain it, it is easier said than done. An accountability partner can help you to succeed and stay committed. With a good partner, you can remain focused and openly talk about your accomplishments.

If you aren’t comfortable finding an accountability partner on a peer level, it might be better to seek out a mentor. Find someone that can help you to talk through your process and help you to be realistic about your goals. A good mentor can guide you to greatness and push you through some of those rough patches. Mentors are more likely to be honest and aware of what you are realistically accomplishing, which can make a notable difference. A lot of people also feel better about discussing their struggles with a mentor, which makes them a great accountability partner.

Schedule Career Development into Your Calendar

There is no time to wait when it comes to investing in yourself. Your entire day is focused on doing your job and succeeding at executive leadership support. If you really want to find success, you will need to focus on your career development. A lot of people think that simply working helps them with their professional development, but that really isn’t enough. Committing to being the best executive assistant that you can be involves continuous learning so you can always remain one step ahead.

To accommodate this, you will want to set aside time specifically for professional development. Use some of your free time (as limited as it might be) to really push your own ambitions. You deserve to invest in yourself, and you need to if you want to achieve all of those big SMART goals you’ve set. Be realistic about how you use your time, and focus on how you can continue to improve. When you continuously place an emphasis on your own edification and ambition, you will find that success is much easier to come by. Don’t be the person that doesn’t think that they are worth their own time. You deserve as much as you give everyone else!


At ELS, our mission is to progress the profile and professional lives of executive assistants by creating an educational experience that inspires growth, collaboration, and community. Our events are focused on helping executive assistants make the most out of their careers, but to do that, you have to really put in the work. Your professional development is in your own hands, so do what it takes to meet the goals that you set out for yourself. Every single day is a new opportunity to improve, so focus on making it possible. Find the right people, set SMART goals, and put in the time to learn and improve. You will be so happy to see how your efforts play out in the end. You are the best investment that you can make, so act accordingly!