Below are examples of winning nominations from each of our Award Categories. All identifying information has been removed for privacy, but you’ll notice that these nominations come from varied types of companies and detail the wide array of duties and unique situations that arise from working as an Admin within different environments. These are exactly the kinds of details and anecdotes that the Admin Awards Board of Judges are looking for, and the reason many of these nominations came out on top. We hope this helps you craft the perfect nomination which you can begin using the “Nominate Now” button at the bottom of this page!
Above the Call Award
NOMINEE is an integral part of our team. She is a consummate professional in all of her administrative duties and then goes above and beyond our expectations to support our team, our customers and our mission. One of NOMINEE’s key accomplishments recently has been to manage our best practice learning sessions. These are global web-based meetings with over 300 attendees. She is there to plan and coordinate the sessions that are presented by a host of international team members. She ensures the technology is working and manages the feedback surveys and results as well. This is not part of her job description, but she offered to help as she found the topics interesting. In addition, our team has undergone many organizational changes over the past few years. It has been hard to feel like a “team”. NOMINEE volunteered for the task to help facilitate improvement in overall culture and mood. From team meetings and offsite team building exercises, to remembering birthdays and good or bad news for individuals, to working with facilities to paint our dull gray walls to bright, fun colors – she has taken the lead and the payoff is endless. Retention is always tough when there is a lot of change – we haven’t had any. NOMINEE has also begun managing some of our travel exceptions. At XYZ COMPANY we have strict rules about traveling without enough notice to get good airfare. NOMINEE was able to distinguish a certain job role that required immediate travel (to support our customers). She now maintains a list of these individuals so that they do not need additional approvals for immediate travel. They are extremely grateful – and in the end – so are our customers, who don’t have to wait for a technician to get approvals before showing up! That is not to dismiss the Administrative part of her role. NOMINEE is amazing in supporting the organization, and it is no small task. Administratively, she manages a very large department of individuals that report in a matrix, global organization. Not all of these individuals report directly to her boss – and yet she supports them. Calendars, Expense Reports, Travel Arrangements, Meeting arrangements, PowerPoint, Excel – you name it, NOMINEE does it and does it well. Recently a peer of mine saw the travel document that she put together for me which described pertinent details (car, hotel, meeting location etc.) and asked for a copy to use as a best practice for his department. And finally, NOMINEE is a leader in our charitable contributions. NOMINEE lead efforts for our Angel Tree, she manages our once yearly “Community Partnership Day” for our department (where we have built houses for Habitat, cleaned out a freezer for a homeless shelter, cleaned up a dog shelter and much more) and she does so much more. She is always giving back to the community and helps us to do so as well! Simply put – we don’t know what we would do without her! NOMINEE’s role is the Executive Assistant to the Global Head of XYZ COMPANY Procurement. There are 44 individuals in the department (8 direct reports to the Head). There are also another 25 procurement individuals that report to someone out of state that sit with us and are included in all we do. NOMINEE manages my calendar (tough task as I have endless meetings with different time zones, leaders of outside organizations including CEOs of suppliers as well as our own executive team – CEO, CFO). NOMINEE also keeps track of others’ travel so that in the event of a supplier situation – she can easily help me find someone (NOTE: we support manufacturing plants in addition to the headquarters so it is crucial that everything we do can be time sensitive). NOMINEE orders supplies and manages the supply cabinet. She manages our office space in terms of who sits where etc. She deals directly with the facility management team and escalates to their managers as appropriate. I never have to get involved as she knows exactly who to deal with and her positive personality ensures we get what we need! In terms of suppliers – there are always new suppliers cold calling and current suppliers with concerns or simply wanting to check in. She helps manage their needs – she could be talking to a sales rep or to a manufacturing site leader or to the CEO of a large supplier. In all cases she is professional and provides the type of service that they need while still maintaining my own personal sanity. NOMINEE provides exceptional service in so many ways that it will be difficult to list them all. To give context: We work in a global, matrixed organization to manage procurement within XYZ COMPANY. Some of the procurement professionals are XYZ COMPANY employees and most for our parent company. Some are local and some are in all Regions of the world. There are over 1000 procurement people globally that could support XYZ COMPNAY at any given time. And we also manage a large supply base of over 5000 suppliers. In short, its complicated. And yet, NOMINEE consistently and seemingly with ease juggles time zones, language barriers and special needs such as dietary restrictions. And she does so in such a way that everyone feels her individual attention. She knows people by name, offers to ensure they have proper accommodations or a ride. She helps people get on our campus using security and badging. She makes sure they have a place to sit with proper plug ins (key to International visitors). Basically, she makes them feel at home. She also manages a key employee training activity for all of procurement – including our parent company. This is 100% outside of her normal job description. We routinely conduct best practice sessions around key topics of interest. She coordinates the topics as well as the administrative piece of inviting everyone etc. Then she kicks off the sessions and also performs the interest surveys. Some of these are at middle of the night hours. The feedback for her performance is always top notch. NOMINEE was recognized in a global meeting for this work. She also manages our department office space. We occupy part of a floor of the XYZ COMPAMY buildings. Besides the office supplies and trouble tickets for the printers – normal activities — she also recognized that the area seemed a bit depressing (paint was a dull gray and lighting was not great). NOMINEE took it upon herself to work with our facility team to upgrade lighting and get the walls painted with fun, geometric shapes. The mood has really lightened. And she also coordinates all of our social activities. Tomorrow we are going to “Painting with a Twist”. In the late spring, we will be doing our annual day of Charity – in the past, she has coordinated for us to work with Habitat for Humanity, working at a homeless shelter and even a pet shelter. She also coordinates the annual Angel Tree for us plus our fun potluck lunches. Last year, a small team came to town from multiple different states and she organized a trip to the local “Escape Room”. She never forgets a birthday and ensures that I send flowers for proper occasions such as funerals and surgeries. She never tries to take credit for this (although I think most everyone knows it is NOMINEE that runs everything around here!). One more example is that she interfaces with all of the “C Suite” assistants to ensure that their leaders get what they need from our department. This can be a difficult job as the demands of their time are quite high and she finds a way to help. This could be travel issues or procurement issues or even supplier payment issues. Several have expressed to me that she is wonderful to work with. During our last annual “ratings calibration”, the team was reviewing multiple individuals’ performance. NOMINEE’s name had not yet been discussed when one leader asked about her rating. The person wanted to ensure that I gave her a high rating for her outstanding work. At that moment, I have never seen so many people chime in to describe how GREAT someone else is. Every single person commented about her stellar performance. Comments were “She does so much more than asked.” “She offered to help me on my project without being asked” “She is our glue.” “She is a jewel” “She always works to help others – does she ever take a break?” And these are just some of the comments. In short – NOMINEE goes above and beyond in everything she does for us. I am grateful for her every day – and I learned, so is everyone else. I hope you see fit to give her this award as she exemplifies the term “Above and Beyond”.
When NOMINEE was hired as Administrative Coordinator just over 2 1⁄2 years ago, we were a department of 14. Since then our department has increased five-fold. NOMINEE has seamlessly and proactively built, scaled, adapted, and streamlined administrative systems and protocols in response to this growth. Each year NOMINEE’s administrative responsibilities have expanded considerably but not just because of the rapid growth of the department. The expansion of her role is also the result of her ability to free-up capacity by creating efficient processes, coupled with her insatiable appetite for eliminating administrative “pain points”. For example, we, and many Museums, struggle with the timely processing and tracking of the many, many artworks and artifacts that are offered by the public for inclusion in XYZ MUSEUM’s collection. All of these requests (and there are dozens monthly) need to be given due consideration by the appropriate curator, declined politely and sensitively should they not be deemed desirable for the collection, or put through a rigorous and lengthy process of curatorial assessment, research, justification and approval. Not only did NOMINEE develop a transparent and rigorous process for tracking and vetting these collection offers, she also built commitment and buy-in from the whole team to adopt and adhere to the new process and protocols. Furthermore, she keeps potential donors informed at every step of the way. Part of her success is her keen ability to think through the best way to do things, the other part is her ability to build the trust and confidence amongst the professional staff for her to assume accountability for stewarding this complex and often delicate process. Because NOMINNEE has managed her administrative responsibilities so efficiently and has expressed a desire to learn and do more, her role has grown to include multiple collection and archive-related activities. For example, she single- handedly over a period of about a year, quietly and patiently chipped away at culling, organizing and inventorying 45+ years of exhibition files that were stored in various locations and states of disarray across multiple individuals’ offices. Not only that, she created a records room so that now anyone in XYZ MUSEUM can easily locate and research any past exhibition. This record room has now expanded to include other institutional records and archives. NOMINEE’s knack for seeing a need and stepping in to help extends well beyond her home department. For example, she recognized that some younger, less experienced staff in administrative roles were struggling to understand how complex institutions worked, and how they might grow personally and professionally in their roles. She created a weekly get- together for admin staff across XYZ MUSEUM over coffee, to discuss shared topics of interest (e.g. navigating change, managing up, having influence without authority), look for opportunities to collaborate and streamline work, and grow professionally and personally. NOMINEE took it one step further by successfully pitching that XYZ MUSEUM support them as a group to take some skill development courses. Needless to say, NOMINEE has received 2 promotions during her short tenure and now holds the position of Program Manager, Administration, in recognition of breadth and import of her responsibilities, authority, and portfolio. She is not only highly capable and productive, she is a mentor to emerging administrative colleagues, fiercely committed to the mission of the organization and the success of others, and, as a result, a cherished and beloved colleague across the institution. Much of what I’m going to describe here are activities and projects that XYZ MUSEUM had been singularly unsuccessful in prioritizing or solving for decades but were ultimately conquered by NOMINEE. And I don’t use the verb “conquered” lightly here. I should note that in each of these cases, it was NOMINEE who raised her hand to take them on. Not only that, in each case, she presented us with a plan on how she could get it done within her regular work week, while still fulfilling all her day to day essential administrative duties. XYZ MUSEUM has a massive offsite collection storage facility the entrance to which was completely impeded by 25 pallets of documents and materials that had sat untouched for over 11 years. We desperately needed space within this facility to build a custom cold storage unit for our acetate negative collections. With the help of a few summer students over a 3-month period, NOMINEE sorted and culled over 11,000 files which made room for this important project. Like many Museums that have been actively collecting for decades, there are many parts of the collection that unfortunately remain uncatalogued. In other words, large portions of the collection haven’t been adequately inventoried and housed to facilitate research and access by scholars, students and the public, let alone our own curatorial staff. A case in point is the extensive archive of pioneering California female architect and designer Elsie Crawford – 30 boxes of notes, original designs, and models that remained uncatalogued. When a family member called to look at the material, NOMINEE figured out a way to tackle the recording and housing of this collection so that the material could be reviewed safely and productively. She undertook a similar task with the Estrellita Collection of over 3000 items documenting the life and career of an early San Francisco cabaret performer. NOMINEE’s efforts have not only enhanced XYZ MUSEUM’s ability to steward these important objects, she’s also created a way for people within and outside of XYZ MUSEUM to access those objects for study, storytelling and display. Given her continued ability to deliver on these long overdue collections-related projects, on top of her administrative load, we have asked NOMINEE to design a system by which our staff and outside curators and researcher might be able to search the 60,000 items that make up the archive of California photographer Dorothea Lange. I think the examples previously mentioned demonstrate many of these qualities. But here’s another example: When processing the Estrellita Collection mentioned above, NOMINEE never slowed down despite the many tedious and time-consuming tasks such as sorting and creating an inventory of 300 news clippings, some the size of a postage stamps! NOMINEE’s days are full of interruptions. She is the phone and in-person de-facto receptionist for our department fielding multiple enquiries and juggling multiple competing priorities at once. Furthermore, many of the calls she receives are from members of the public with family “treasures” they are sure XYZ MUSEUM will want to take. NOMINEE juggles all of this with sensitivity, intelligence and aplomb, always with the utmost professionalism, and never without warmth and a sense of humor. NOMINEE spends a lot of time putting herself on the hook to make sure that XYZ MUSEUM can fulfill its commitment to public access and service. She responds to every donation inquiry and research request with care and a “can do” attitude. Even when people ask something impossible from her, she works with them and Museum staff to find a solution that satisfies everyone. There are countless students, curators, and members of the public that are indebted to NOMINEE for making their research request happen, often on a short timeline and despite logistical challenges. NOMINEE has a passion for making the impossible possible and giving people an extra special experience at XYZ MUSEUM.
Administrative Excellence in Public Service Award
NOMINEE holds a critical position within the City Police Department. She is asked to regularly assume many more roles than can be listed in this submission. In most cases, NOMINEE recognizes what needs to be done prior to being asked and completes these tasks in a timely and thorough manner. Although she may not have realized it when accepting this position, finance work has become a significant portion of NOMINEE’s workload. This includes the processing of invoices and purchase orders on a regular basis. However, it also includes building and managing the Department’s eighteen-million-dollar budget. None of this could be accomplished without NOMINEE’s hard work and dedication. In addition to a tremendous amount of administrative duties, NOMINEE has made herself available as an extremely valuable crime analysis resource. She regular assumes the role of a crime analyst and assists investigators with active investigations. When providing crime analysis support, NOMINEE is extremely thorough and diligent. She takes a great deal of pride in helping detectives and her work product is indicative of that. NOMINEE is often called upon to help identify potential victims, suspects, and witnesses. She does an exceptional job in doing so and often takes the initiative in identifying additional crime related data. NOMINEE has provided sworn staff with investigative avenues and techniques that were not previously available to them. She recently assisted in a human trafficking enforcement operation. Her work during this operation led to several arrests. NOMINEE prepares dozens of documents on a regular basis. These documents are always thorough and complete. Her written work product is outstanding. Her tasks are extremely diverse as she is asked to produce narratives, updates, budget related documents, and emails that are extremely well done. I regularly ask NOMINEE to proofread my written work. Not only does she complete her work in a timely manner, she ensures that I do as well. Many of NOMINEE’s suggestions regarding how the Department can operate in a more effective and efficient manner have been implemented. NOMINEE displays an extremely positive attitude and has fostered strong working relationships with individuals at every level within the Department as well as with employees in other City Departments. The fact NOMINEE rarely finds herself in difficult situations with coworkers is indicative of how well she works with others. She has adopted a team-oriented approach and possesses a strong understanding of information that can be shared and information that cannot. NOMINEE implements strong customer service principles on a daily basis. She continually receives inquiries from the public and handles them in a professional and effective manner. All of NOMINEE’s interactions contribute to promoting the image of the Department and City. She is a strong member of the Department’s social media team and does an exceptional job of both communicating with the public and enhancing the image of the Department. NOMINEE interacts with other City Departments more than most members of the Police Department. She has built strong relationships throughout the City that have benefited the Department. NOMINEE arrives for work very early in the morning and often stays well past the scheduled end of her day. She even comes in on her days off for special Department and City events. NOMINEE simply does not use sick time and is always in the office early, and she always presents herself in an extremely professional manner. It is difficult to articulate NOMINEE’s value to the Police Department and to me. As mentioned earlier, it is not possible to discuss all areas of her work within the confines of this submission. However, among her strongest attributes is her integrity. NOMINEE’s position is one that has access to private and sensitive information including criminal record information and police personnel files. She takes this responsibility very seriously. I have a tremendous amount of trust in NOMINEE and I know that my conversations with her are not shared with anyone else. She also has the canny ability to pass along information to me that she knows is important and that I need to know. NOMINEE has made the City Police Department a much stronger organization. Her work ethic, pleasant personality, professionalism, and dedication are exceptional. It is an absolute pleasure to work with NOMINEE and she should probably be supervising me rather than the other way around. I look forward to working with NOMINEE for many more years. NOMINEE implements strong customer service principles on a daily basis. She continually receives inquiries from the public and handles them in a professional and effective manner. All of NOMINEE’s interactions contribute to promoting the image of the Department and City. She is a strong member of the Department’s social media team and does an exceptional job of both communicating with the public and enhancing the image of the Department. NOMINEE regularly assists other staff in communicating with Spanish speaking members of the community. In her role as a crime analyst, NOMINEE provides an exceptional level of service to investigators, victims of crime, and the public that, more often than not, goes unnoticed.
Working with HR, our ACouncil (Admin Council) created a leveling guide for admins. This guide lays out what is required and expected at each level for an admin. This covers requirements as well for our global admin community. This allows both the manager and the admin to know what development and/or skills are needed to move to other levels. This gives both the admin and the manager a tool to work with for professional development. The admin community is also encouraged to think beyond the admin role for possible career advancement. XYZ COMPANY has had many in the admin community advance into coordinator, chief of staff, project manager roles. There is no limit on opportunities. XYZ COMPANY posts all internal job openings and anyone can apply for any job they feel they are qualified for. Our staffing department works with the hiring managers to ensure interviews are given to all that are qualified. They don’t look at the current title and limit them at all. XYZ COMPANY also provides many development opportunities so that they can expand their skills and have the chance at other roles anywhere in the company. When someone is hired into another role in another business unit, the managers work together on a transition plan to help make it as smooth of a process for all involved. They encourage every employee to not only set goals around current deliverables, but to also set goals for on-going development. XYZ COMPANY believes that Career Planning is an on-going personal process, driven by the employee and supported by his or her manager. XYZ COMPANY has a Growth and Career Planning Guide describing XYZ COMPANY’s philosophy, practices, process, and tools related to Growth and Career Planning. This enables them to plan a clear path, no matter what their growth plans are. It allows them to download a planning form to help them map out their path and provides them a tool to work with their manager on for development. Admins are encouraged to attend conferences or external training’s as well. The ACouncil (Admin Council) has built a robust admin community over the past 10 years that has helped many grow in their administrative careers. Our foundation was built on the values of XYZ COMPANY. The purpose of the ACouncil, in partnership with the executive sponsor and IT advocate, is to increase productivity, communication, and professionalism within XYZ COMPANY’s administrative community. The ACouncil serves the administrative community as mentors and advocates; providing practical training, professional development and guidance, philanthropic and morale-boosting opportunities. Part of the ACouncil we have several committees, such as the Newsletter Committee and the Website Committee. Both provide up to date information and resources for our admin community. Then, we also have the following committees, that all provide an all-around balanced life for our admins. The Admin Learning and Development Committee implements and maintains a formal on-boarding and training process for all administrative new hires, as well as offers a comprehensive training portfolio to all administrative associates. They offer a variety of educational seminars and workshops designed to enhance the professional development, career growth and success of all XYZ COMPANY’s EAs. The Admin Relations Committee plans activities and team building events for the administrative community while also focusing on giving back to the community by partnering with various charitable organizations in the bay area to collect donations for. The Admin Helping Hands Committee is dedicated to serving others in the Bay Area through volunteerism. The most precious gift is time and they have chosen to give their time in a tangible way by partnering with local charitable organizations on a quarterly basis. They are able to offer the admin community the opportunity to step away from their desk to give back by working with the charity directly. The Administrative Community Mentoring Program of XYZ COMPANY, (“Mentoring Program”) in partnership with ACouncil is to establish a relationship between two people, a senior mentor and a junior mentee on either an ongoing basis or for a single or specific situation. Mentoring has been identified as an important influence in professional development. Since the creation of the ACouncil (Admin Council) 10 years ago, we have always had a HR Sponsor. This sponsors role is to be the advocate for the ACouncil, which in turn is the advocate for the admin community. They play a vital role on the ACouncil to be able to get the ear and the attention of the top level executives. To ensure they are listening and not passing over the needs of the admin community. This HR Sponsor also helps bring Admin Leadership training to our admin community. This training mimics what our leaders are receiving, which allows the admins to be aligned with our leaders and be better partners. The HR Sponsor does not dictate how the ACouncil runs, they are only there as an advisor and advocate, which in turn has provided a very successful partnership for 10 years. With the guidance of the ACouncil (Admin Council) at XYZ COMPANY and the support of the HR Sponsor for the ACouncil, XYZ COMPANY’s leadership have come to respect the admin community and all they do. They look at the admin community as more of a partnership instead of a person handling their calendar. In turn the leadership have supported any and all training opportunities offered to the admin community. One good example is when the ACouncil brought a training series to XYZ COMPANY for the admin community. The leadership of XYZ COMPANY were completely supportive by ensuring their admins taking the training could step away from their desk to invest in their growth and development. They also made the commitment to participate in exercises with their admins to build a stronger working relationship. The executives also showed their commitment to the admin community when the ACouncil approached them for a budget for trainings and activities to benefit the admin community. They didn’t hesitate to commit to the funds to support them. XYZ COMPANY has many admins involved in projects that are critical to their organization. Our admin community is highly respected and any admin that has the willingness to take on the ownership of a project, they are supported. They are looked at like any other executive or team member would be, in fact sometimes even more so. Before the admin led the project, it would be led by a Sr. Manager or Director usually. The types of projects vary, depending on the function, examples are a bit harder to provide. The Administrative Excellence Award Program is a unique celebration that recognizes Administrative Excellence and honors the invaluable contributions of Administrative Professionals. To be considered for an Admin Award, nominees must currently serve in an administrative role(s) and have been employed at XYZ COMPANY for at least one year. This is an annual award given out on Administrative Professionals Day at our Admin Celebration. Nominations come directly from the managers and they must explain in detail how their admin deserves the award based on XYZ COMPANY’s Values. There are many nominations submitted every year and the managers always show a lot of passion in their nominations. We also have so many of our managers that make sure their admin is shown they are appreciated all throughout the year, in a variety of ways (lunches, bonus awards, flowers, etc). XYZ COMPANY will do a write-up on our winners and post on our community monitors throughout XYZ COMPANY, as well as on our Assistant Community website. XYZ COMPANY also ensures they support the Admin Awards every year since it came to our area. Managers and employees are encouraged to nominate, and the managers get very excited about their admin being nominated. They are more than happy to attend the Gala with their admin when they are a finalist, to support them whether they win or not. If they do win, the manager ensures they announce it to everyone right away. As well as complete a write-up that is posted on our Assistant Community website and on our community monitors throughout XYZ COMPANY.
NOMINEE is the absolute best administrative professional I have worked with in over 30 years. She has a cheerful attitude, a calm presence, and a can-do attitude. She has been a rock of stability as our company has grown rapidly, then downsized, and now is back on the growth trajectory. She has led major projects for our company, including each office remodel (now five in five years) and two Analyst and Investor Day programs. She is a key resource for our travel arrangements, working to creatively solve housing issues for employees in our region, through both permanent and temporary housing, She serves as our office manager and coordinates all aspects of our administrative office functions. She also takes tremendous care of “her people”, taking the time to know what someone’s favorite candy is, picking the right theme for their birthday cards, and remembering who has food allergies or preferences when planning group meals. She plans Board dinners, company management meetings, special outings and even designed onesies for the new XYZ COMPANY babies across the nation. More than anything though, her contributions to the company in the fall of 2018 make her stand out from her peers. Her leadership (described below) during Hurricane Harvey was unmatched and put our company in a position to succeed and be back in business in a much shorter time than many. It was through her efforts and her efforts alone, that we were able to secure temporary space for our employees in less than 48 hours and move in 1 week after the floods rendered our office uninhabitable for several months. She dedicated countless hours beyond the normal workday to ensure that we were able to get back to work quickly and start to bring some normalcy to our days. What can I say but WOW! NOMINEE showed tremendous leadership during Hurricane Harvey, first with her focus on the problem recognizing our office building was likely to flood (again!). She independently and proactively started taking steps to ensure our office with over 60 employees would have a workspace as quickly as possible subsequent to the flooding. While the rain was coming down, she was on the phone calling our real estate broker and started arranging tours of potential temporary spaces before the rain even stopped. Our company has moved from the flooded office to what we affectionately called the “temporary temporary space” within a week of the floods. We subsequently moved again into furnished space under a sublease while we build out new space to which we will move in May. Three moves in 9 months is a lot to coordinate and NOMINEE has handled it beautifully. She had the confidence to act and the persistence to keep working through issue after issue. She coordinated the “fireman’s rescue” of our IT equipment where we had employees staged in the stairwells of the flooded building to bring out as much IT equipment as possible in a 2-hour window. She coordinated the restocking of supplies when it was difficult to get our various suppliers to deliver to the right location. She was gracious and patient while waiting in line for two hours at a time to retrieve our mail from the post office. She coordinated address changes, communications and everything to make all of our employees feel at home in whatever space we occupied. At the same time, she coordinated our second Analyst and Investor Day. The event took place three weeks after the hurricane, so while she was coordinating all aspects of our office relocations, she was also coordinating all aspects of a visit of 60 people to our operations in our region, from the hotels to meals to transportation. I cannot thank NOMINEE enough for all she did last fall to ensure the company continued operations without a hitch and the professionalism she displayed in such a stressful time in the city. NOMINEE approaches everything with enthusiasm and professionalism. She previously worked for an apartment management company providing relocation services. She has put that experience to good use as we have house numerous employees on a temporary basis during major construction projects. She used her contacts to arrange for housing and negotiated fair rates for our employees. She has taken that experience to all of her projects, whether it is arranging for hotels and discounted rates for hotels we use frequently as a company, to searching out better vendors and lower costs for office supplies and other services. Her attention to detail and desire to help the company has translated into thousands of dollars of savings over the past few years. She has also mentored several assistants in our office, teaching them important skills but also providing an excellent role model for them. Two of our receptionists have been promoted into HR roles because of the guidance and training NOMINEE has provided. NOMINEE is completely dedicated to making the lives of those she works with easier. She is always responsive and reaches out to check in with employees who are traveling to ensure there are no hiccups. Her attention to detail, focus on efficiency and positive attitude, combine with her sense of ownership to create the consummate professional and someone I trust and value every day.
NOMINEE is one of XYZ COMPANY’s original employees that began working here 23 years ago. There is no normal day and the job entails supporting/leading the President of XYZ COMPANY (often times, she leads me). You don’t go to a school to learn how to run XYZ COMPANY and how to deal with a wide array of matters. NOMINEE is required to juggle all the balls and remain calm, cool, professional all while serving as my most-trusted adviser. The job includes dealing with fans, divas (sports stars, music artists, elected officials, media), staff, attorneys, the staff from our publicly-traded home office, concessions issues, merchandise issues, operational issues (could be weather-related, medical, parking, traffic, ticketing, etc.), security matters and more. And then there is the promotional side of my job that requires her to know exactly what I mean and how to respond when I hurriedly walk by her desk and say without breaking stride (and these are real examples): “I need a western shirt that lights up,” “Find me a monkey that will sell souvenir programs,” “I need two life- sized Rock ‘Em, Sock ‘Em robots today,” “Send the motorized bathtub to that dinner and remind them I can’t eat chicken.” And she never looks up either. She just gets the western shirt that lights up or the monkey or the Rock ‘Em, Sock ‘Em robots and all the rest. Because this is an everyday thing for her. And all the while, whether it is the President of one of America’s biggest corporations or a Congressman or a fan I met at a gas station calling me on the phone, she talks to them individually and they don’t realize that she’s also trying to get the next person in line auditioning as a fire-breather to go into my office to show me their skills. And that’s what she does all the time. Every day. That’s our normal. There isn’t any professional skill needed that she can’t apply. For 23 years. Everything. Perfect. No mistakes. Never forgot anything. We have box after box full of her daily spiral notebooks full of information from every call or conversation she has had here. Earlier in this application, I explained how she has to juggle lots of balls while also being my eyes and ears. Those skills are certainly apparent in her performance. I can tell you that so many of the professionals I come across, many big names that you would know, ask me about NOMINEE because they have developed a relationship with her on the telephone. She has attended many conferences and seminars related to her role here through the years, but I honestly cannot tell you what they were. I don’t have spiral notebooks on every conversation I have had in the last 23 years. But she has constantly kept herself abreast of the latest, particularly regarding computer skills. Recognize that in that 23 years we have gone from PCs to emails, data bases, computer targeting tools, micro-targeting, CSMs and more. We’ve virtually moved from the stone age to Big Brother over those 23 years. And NOMINEE is the one who has explained it all to me and helped me develop my (rudimentary) digital skills. Simply put, NOMINEE has run this business while I have been the front man for more than two decades. We’re pretty simple for a couple of reasons. One, I’m always telling our staff that we’re always going to do the right thing because it’s always the right thing to do. Two, we’re also a publicly traded company and I don’t want us to even have the appearance of doing anything inappropriate. We work hard, 12 months a year. But in the weeks leading up to a race and particularly the week of a race we often work 18 hours or more a day. NOMINEE has always led by example and she’s the first one here and the last to leave. She has told many members of our staff how they are expected to conduct themselves. She has explained to them about our XYZ COMPANY Pride and created a culture that everyone is to meet. Whether it’s how they dress, how they talk or how creative they are, she has challenged people countless times to make sure they are doing their very best at all times. Because we all expect that of each other. She has set the standard for our culture here. Everybody is to be treated honestly, openly and fairly. There is a standard in our industry and then there is a higher standard we expect at XYZ COMPANY. NOMINEE treats everybody the same and that’s honestly, openly and fairly. You get praised when you do well, but she has also gone to staff members to encourage them to improve their performance. She is not just my administrative assistant she is everybody’s assistant here and she provides much of the conscience and instills a pride that our staff has to meet. She develops relationships with everyone she speaks with, including those she only talks to on the telephone but has never met. She instills the XYZ COMPANY Pride. She will be at her desk on a Saturday two weeks before a race doing odd little administrative things she knows must be done because she also knows she will have to dedicate her time on the days immediately prior to the race to the impossible-to-anticipate issues that will arise. She out works everybody. She is my eyes and ears. It doesn’t matter if it is a new young person selling tickets or somebody in our gift shop or a new person in our IT department, NOMINEE sees all and hears all. I don’t get to see and hear things because I’m always in meetings and many people act different when the boss is around. So, if I say something about being disappointed in someone, she has often told me I’m misjudging them. She has encouraged me to talk with others to reinforce her thoughts on an individual’s performance. She has pointed out big and little things done by a staff member to make sure I notice them. She also tells me who is inherently honest and who isn’t. She has done all of these countless times through the years. She has put up with me since 1996. I must be honest…I got tired of me in 2002.
Rookie of the Year Award
NOMINEE is a first-generation college graduate. She is the child of refugees who escaped their home country and settled in the US. She overcame the multi-generational trauma inflicted on refugees to graduate and thrive as an administrative professional in higher education. NOMINEE is an organized self-starter. I only recently began chairing the Ethnic Studies department and have a lot of new initiatives that I am introducing to the department. NOMINEE has been able to support me in these initiatives by identifying resources across the university to aid in the initiatives. Her ability to identify university resources has been a great help in advertising Ethnic Studies department courses and programming. She also networks with other university offices and suggests how we can work with those offices to better serve our students. NOMINEE is data-driven. She developed and launched several data collection projects in the department to determine how students interact with the department. She hopes that such data can be used by the faculty members to show how much time they spent mentoring students in annual merit reviews. She has developed student surveys to inform our curriculum offerings. NOMINEE ends each meeting with “how can I help?” She always makes herself available to help me as chair and other faculty members. She accomplishes her job tasks and takes on extra work. Her organization allows her to get things done efficiently and within budget. In her short time within the university, she has transformed the Ethnic Studies department- our procedures, even our office layout, and all for the better. When I come up with new ideas as chair, she is there to help me execute those ideas. I really cannot imagine how I’d work without her. She is indispensable to the department. She spent 5 years working in special education at a charter school. She also established and runs her own apparel business. She has reorganized all of our files. That is, she has better organized previous files, creating a logical department archive where there was not one before. She has created new processes to make the department run more efficiently. For example, she created folders and checklists for faculty travel to streamline the process of reconciling travel expenses after official university travel. Noting that students often entered our office and seemed lost, she created a front desk reception area. Students and staff have all remarked how much more welcoming it is now. Beyond that, the front desk is also part of a new effort to collect student interaction data. The student workers at the front desk log what the students ask for and which faculty members they go to see. This data will help us decide what types of literature to have available for students based on the questions they ask. It will also help faculty demonstrate how much time they spend with students. Prior to her tenure, student workers were little utilized. Mostly, they would make copies when asked. NOMINEE trained the students. She gave them more responsibility, explaining to them how the professional training she gave them will help them in their future careers. She offered training in how to write professional emails, how to verbally communicate professionally, how to create eye-catching marketing material, how to use social media to reach our current and potential students.
She has made contacts across the university in order to ensure that we have access to university resources for marketing our curricular offerings. She has also become familiar with university wide initiatives so that we can be part of those initiatives and better serve efforts to retain our students and support our students to successful completion of their degrees. In order to better reach our current and potential students, NOMINEE signed up for a Facebook conference in the upcoming weeks. She has also signed up for administrative professional trainings in our area. In addition to that she keeps an eye out on HR and Office of Information Technology trainings the university offers. She attends and suggests that faculty attend these trainings so that we can all make use of technology that would make collaborating easier, especially since quite a few of our faculty now teach online and are not physically in the office as much. NOMINEE is such a wonderful help and huge asset to the University’s Ethnic Studies department. I want to underscore that she came from an under-privileged community and overcame many barriers to earn an advanced degree and become a higher educational admin. Recently, she helped organize her 10-year high school reunion because she was her student body president her senior year. Her class was the first to graduate since it was a newly opened school at the time. Somehow, she juggled the rigors of this job with organizing a reunion in another state remotely, all while fixing up a house she recently purchased. Her organization skills make her so efficient, and she does everything with a smile. I really cannot say enough amazing things about her. She is definitely my rookie of the year.
If you were to look up positive culture, perseverance, accountability or loyalty to team – you would find NOMINEE in the definition. NOMINEE is an Executive Administrative professional for the SVP and Chief Marketing Officer within our business and is the primary back-up for the President of our Business Unit within XYZ COMPANY. She does not shy away from a challenge, which sets her apart from some peers. She consistently demonstrates a can-do attitude and will find a way to solve a problem. She is also a trusted member of the leadership team she supports and is included in strategic staff discussions. She understands how to navigate sensitive situations and ensure confidentiality while also eager to learn the business, so her support is meaningful for the leaders. Company Culture and Team Spirit: In a time of change and uncertainty in our business, NOMINEE’s role became focused on team culture and creating a positive work environment. She had a vision to foster team spirit with forms of recognition and camaraderie in creative ways. She recognizes that a simple thank you, chocolate, or a shared laugh can make a person’s day. With this vision in mind, she set out a thoughtful approach to team engagement through the calendar year. Highlights of this include:
Holiday/Christmas potluck AND Christmas in July. This isn’t your ordinary potluck and gift exchange. NOMINEE balances cost and requested the leadership team to contribute a small monetary donation for raffle gifts for the broader teams. She and a few of her peers creatively produced theme-based gift baskets (very inexpensively but with high value) and had a white elephant exchange during a potluck holiday lunch. Examples of these baskets included ‘Siesta Fiesta – a basket of treats suitable for a classic Mexican fiesta’ or ‘Game Night – a basket of board games and candy’ and even ‘Movie Night – a basket of classic movies, popcorn and candy’. Each one was put together elegantly and with the team in mind. We did this twice with our most recent event in July – extending the holiday spirit through the year. The teams laughed, had a chance to connect with each other, and took away some great prizes!
MSM Emmy Awards: We are the Marketing and Solutions Management (MSM) team and she developed a play on that using the Emmy awards. This program tied together XYZ COMPANY’s values and culture. She created a simple nomination and voting process (MSM leadership team served as ‘The Academy’) and literally rolled out a red carpet during our quarterly townhalls. 3 nominees are voted for a different XYZ COMPANY Value and their work was highlighted to the broader group. In addition, there is an MVP award along with a team award. She brought very inexpensive wall décor and engraved Emmy trophies to create awareness for business results.
Service and birthday recognition: Each employee town hall NOMINEE will include a shout-out to service anniversaries. She insists that any business update should recognize teams for their outstanding tenure and contributions. In addition, she has led a monthly birthday program. Posting individuals on a chart for all to see monthly and carving out 1 hour to celebrate with cake, ice cream, or other creative treats. She is extremely cost conscious and finds ways to drive a big impact without breaking the bank.
Admin community support: NOMINEE loves to see the smiles on people’s faces and that doesn’t stop with the team she supports but extends to her other peers across XYZ COMPANY. For Administrative Professionals Day, NOMINEE goes out of her way to get a small token of thanks with her own money and ensure each Admin has something on their desk. No one asks her to do this, this is just how she operates.
To support all the examples noted above, below are a few quotes from current and past colleagues (leadership and peers). Outside of XYZ COMPANY, NOMINEE continues to support child advocacy efforts. Together, this amplifies her efforts internally and externally and reinforces her daily behaviors and positive impact.
“NOMINEE ALWAYS thinks about the bigger picture in terms of the Team and how to ensure the Team is able to perform at its highest potential. She truly embraces the role of Executive Assistant by doing more than simply being the assistant to the Executive of our Product/Marketing function. She provides guidance and support, at a tactical level as well, to each of the 300 individual team members daily. She is an amazing source of information and resourceful and efficient in getting things done for everyone.” [COLLEAGUE, Vice President Product Management]
“NOMINEE always works ahead and anticipates what information I will need going into a meeting. She prepares and prints meeting content for before I ask for it and generally takes care of many day-to- day tasks without my asking. She reminds me of “Radar” on the M.A.S.H tv series who was always one step ahead.” [COLLEAGUE, Vice President Business Development and Operations]
“NOMINEE is a brilliant Admin. She gladly accepts any challenge I throw her way and makes my complicated travel and expense report woes disappear like magic. Her positive attitude and professionalism help all our staff be more effective.” [COLLEAGUE, Vice President Technology]
“NOMINEE assumes responsibility for the organization’s culture and morale. She knows when we need a celebration, and she knows when we need a boost. One time she felt like the team was having a rough week, so she bought cookies and went to all the desks and meeting rooms handing them out, and, I don’t know how to explain this, but the building went from being kind of quiet and tense to having more happy conversation and laughter almost immediately” [COLLEAGUE, Director Strategy]
“..she is inclusive – for example she takes pains to address a range of dietary needs and preferences… and she goes the extra mile to address the details that make an event so special – the specialized cups, the way door prizes are wrapped and presented, the actual red carpet at an awards ceremony, etc. And she balances our need for a break or celebration with a strong regard for our ability to get work done every day. Her ultimate goal is productivity.” [COLLEAGUE, Director Strategy]
“NOMINEE is more than an Admin to our team; she’s the glue that holds us together. She works daily to make sure our business runs smoothly while looking for creative opportunities to energize, motivate and celebrate our colleagues. She truly takes her job to the next level – and our team benefits immensely.” [COLLEAGUE, Director Marketing]
“NOMINEE excels at event planning, especially when it comes to team building and recognizing her team’s accomplishments. She is extremely creative and goes above and beyond to make the recipients or attendees feel as special as possible. She has adapted within a frequently changing organization to support various executives who are always impressed with her administrative expertise and “whatever it takes” attitude. I’ve worked with NOMINEE at two different companies and this has consistently been her modes operandi.” [COLLEAGUE, Exec Administrative Assistant]
“NOMINEE is definitely the “cheerleader” of our group. She is a go-getter with outstanding ideas to bring her team and others together.” [COLLEAGUE, Exec Administrative Assistant]
“NOMINEE is a true “out of the box” thinker who always comes up with fun ideas to make you feel appreciated. She is so inspiring!” [COLLEAGUE, Administrative Assistant]
“NOMINEE is creative and is always looking for ways for the team to improve its effectiveness and efficiency. For example, she regularly would attend staff meetings and provide suggestions to make sure the team could get the most value from the least time. Documentation, notes, pre-submissions, etc. – she had suggestions for how to improve both the process and the materials to make the team better.” [COLLEAGUE, Branded Cards Operations, Chief Administrative Officer; Former Vice President at XYZ COMPANY and Manager to NOMINEE]
“When I think of NOMINEE, quiet strength comes to mind…I completely trusted her discretion and decision making and how thoughtful she was when I left the organization” [COLLEAGUE, CEO ABC COMPANY, Former SVP and CMO at XYZ COMPANY and Manager to NOMINEE]
While much of the submission captures our gratitude towards NOMINEE and her deservedness of this award, her inner strength is also to be noted. We spend more time with our work family than our own family some days and we tend to take these colleagues for granted. everyone has a story, everyone may be going through a health issue, everyone has their personal life and commitments to prioritize. NOMINEE is a great example of how she balances her professional role with her personal, despite known health challenges and family dependencies. She is a cheerleader for everyone she interacts with and we are very fortunate to have her on our team.
Strategic Partnership Award
Simply put, nobody deserves more than NOMINEE to win this award. Before working with NOMINEE, I can confidently say that I completely ignored the value of Executive Assistants. During exec meetings, as any typical CFO, I was looking at this EA cost center as one of the first cost reduction opportunities if necessary. Many assistants claim to want to be strategic, be proactive, support their execs be more efficient… but the truth is that very few can really perform at an excellence level like NOMINEE. NOMINEE converted me. I am the CFO of XYZ COMPANY. NOMINEE is my EA but also supports the Chief Legal Officer. This is a truly challenging situation, but I can say that I don’t feel that I’m being 50% supported. It’s closer to 300%! At XYZ COMPANY, NOMINEE raises the standard of EAs at an exceptional level, that is why, on top of supporting 2 executives, she is also coaching and training other EAs. For me, it all started during the interview process: she interviewed me! She wanted to understand, not only my expectations and my needs, but also my level of commitments to truly work together as strategic partner. Truly. It means being fully transparent, giving her full access to my email / agenda, being fully involved as part of my leadership team so that she can truly understand what is important to me and better anticipate my needs, my priorities and my objectives. NOMINEE perfectly understands my priorities and even sometimes reminds them to me when my focus is wrong, her ability to anticipate and proactively deal with specific situations makes my life so different. Many EAs would say that their job is to make Execs life more efficient. NOMINEE takes this concept to another level: she manages my energy during the day, understands how to position meetings so that I have time to reflect, follow-up on some topics, spend quality face to face time with employees, and during the best time of the day. She is so thoughtful and so intentional in everything she plans for me. It is obvious that I am much more productive and efficient with the support of NOMINEE, but she also creates ‘quality-time’ during the day that enables me to focus on the right topics and make better decisions. Execs’ impact is not about making more decisions faster, it is often about making better decisions on the most strategic topics and empower their teams to make their own decisions. NOMINEE creates this mindset. She simply makes me a better exec. There are also so many things she undertakes to solve by herself, by working directly with my team or other departments of the company, and always with the right positioning. People do appreciate working with her, not only because she can provide access to me, but because she always puts me and others in the best position to succeed. There are so many examples where her attention to details really made a big difference. What I enjoy the most about NOMINEE is her ability to openly discuss a strategic topic. Her observations and unique perspectives are so valuable. More importantly, we established a level of trust that enables us to disagree, understand our disagreements in a very safe environment. This is rare. I would also say that NOMINEE and I have very complementary personalities, that is why we are such a good team. I think it is extremely hard to be a good Executive Assistant, but even harder to convince an executive that you as an EA can do more than expenses and agenda management. NOMINEE convinced me in a few days, and this is truly an amazing success story, which is why I would love her to win this award.